Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
July 23, 1970
NUMBER 11, PAGE 4,5b



Are you fed up to here with Cambodia and campus strikes, protest marches and pot parties, sex orgies and stock market gyrations? These subjects have just about preempted the news -journals and air waves in recent months. There comes a time when the average citizen is simply numb from being bombarded with such an avalanche of abhorrent news from a sick, sick world.

So take a few minutes out from the nauseous narrations of the daily press — and let us think about hair. That's right — hair. As a matter of fact, thinking about hair puts us right back in the middle of the modern scene. For, for whatever reason, "hair" has become the symbol in our day of the whole range of rebellion. From the fuzzy cheeked high school boy (who is not yet sufficiently mature to grow a beard) to the octogenarian Supreme Court justice whose greasy, scraggly gray locks somehow epitomize the emaciated character of his moral fiber and spiritual obloquy.

The Old Testament gives two outstanding examples of men to whom hair brought disaster. One because he had it; one because he did not. "But in all Israel there was none to be so much praised as Absalom for his beauty: from the sole of his foot even to the crown of his head there was no blemish in him. And when he polled his head, (for it was at every year's end that he polled it: because the hair was heavy on him, therefore he polled it:) he weighed the hair of his head at two hundred shekels after the king's weight." (II Sam. 14:15-16.) In all probability it was the very length and abundance of his hair which caused the rebellious young prince to be slain, for as he fled from the battle in which his forces had been defeated, "Absalom rode upon a mule, and the mule went under the thick boughs of a great oak, and his head caught hold of the oak, and he was taken up between the heaven and the earth; and the mule that was under him went away." Here the handsome young noble perished in shame and disgrace.

The story of Samson and his betrayal by the seductive Delilah is too well known to need more than a passing reference. The loss of his hair (a violation of his Nazarite vow) led to his capture, torture, and eventual death by suicide.

To the Corinthians Paul wrote, "Doth not even nature itself teach you, that if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him? But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given her for a covering." (I Cor. 11:14, 15) Whatever else may have been implied in Paul's teaching on "the hair," we believe one thing is perfectly obvious: the length of the hair is to be one distinguishing mark as between the man and the woman. If a woman cuts her hair so short as to blur that distinction, or a man lets his hair grow so long as to obscure it, then there is a violation of God's law. How long is "long" is not the question; the question is one of distinction between the sexes. The Corinthians were much given to homosexuality (effeminacy is the Biblical term), and it was undoubtedly true of the Corinthians as it has been in all lands and in every age that the homosexual male has a strong urge to affect the looks, manners, and appearance of the female. The feminine hair style on a man would certainly be "against nature," and would be a reproach to any man.

Psychologists will probably be analyzing today's "hair craze" for many a long year to come. But we believe they will all generally agree that this fad symbolizes a confused, immature effort at "self expression" and a basic indecision of character at the very heart of modern youth. The long, long years of permissiveness, parental refusal to exercise discipline, secularism and atheism in schools and colleges has finally caught up with America. We have spawned a "generation of vipers" who openly voice their hatred of society (they call it 'the establishment'), outfit themselves in the filthiest and most outrageous garb they can devise, shun soap and water like it carried a hideous curse, and generally deport themselves in such fashion as would lead most rational people to regard them as candidates for the mad-house. That they are confused and bewildered is obvious; the "long hair" mania probably even suggests a fundamental uncertainty as to their own sexuality — (the long-haired boys may have a deeply rooted subconscious desire to be girls, and the dirty, filthy, Levi clad girls may wish they were boys). But confusion, chaos, and utter amorality seem to be the order of the day.

We doubt that much can be done for the present "youth generation," but let their miserable and melancholy lives be a warning to every parent of children not yet in their teens! Some of these young people will probably find their way to sanity as they mature; others will remain an unsightly excrescence on the body politic until nature takes its inevitable toll. Meanwhile, the time to meet the problem is before it ever arises — meet it while children are still amenable to teaching and training. In all literature, both sacred and secular, there has never been found a sounder maxim than that given by Solomon so long ago: "Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it."

— F. Y. T.