So I’m reading this book about Christ and culture and came across one of those delightful questions that make you look at things in a new light. Would “kephalē” (head) have meant the same thing to first century speakers of Greek as it does to us?
In one of the more hotly debated versus in Scripture, after all, it is the very headship of Christ in the church and of the husband in his family that comes into question.
For the husband is the kephalē of the wife, even as Christ is the kephalē of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. ~Ephesians 5:23 (KJV)
We read “head” and think of the head of a government, company or organization. But is that what the early church would have had in mind? Not having a dictionary of early Greek immediately available, I looked up all the times kephalē was used in the New Testament and discovered something I thought was rather interesting.
John the Baptist’s kephalē was put on a platter. Jesus had no place to rest His kephalē. Christ is the kephalē of the church and the husband is the kephalē of his wife. And then my favorite.
Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the kephalēn gōnias: this is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes? ~Matthew 21:42 (KJV)
The cornerstone? When I looked this up, I did not realize this was the center of heated dispute between the egalitarians and the complementarians. It is not my intent to mess with anyone’s theology. I honestly did not read this as any relationship changing revelation, but as a beautiful word picture which seems to complete other ideas in Scripture.
Job 38:6 declares that God laid the cornerstone of the world, Isaiah prophesies a precious cornerstone, a sure foundation, the Psalms cry out about the stone the builders rejected and Matthew, Mark, Luke, John and Peter all claim it is Christ.
And as the Encyclopedia Britannica so eloquently puts it, “Cornerstones symbolized “seeds” from which buildings would germinate and rise.”
Is that not what Christ is to the church? Should it not be what a husband is to his family?
That led me to ask myself what the cornerstone of our homeschool is. Is it Christ or the flashy curriculum and ideas I have picked up along the way? I used to be sure of that answer, but a lot has come between me and my original vision for homeschooling over the last several years. I am still sorting through that, but homeschooling, like life, is an ongoing journey.