Does a Christian woman have a spiritual covering? In a previous article, I discussed whether a woman needs a spiritual covering. In response, a reader named Hansel asked me about the structure of marriage and the covering of a woman in marriage. The reader also said that I had ignored 1 Peter 2:25-3:7 and asked me to respond from these verses. This article will deal with a few more verses than Hansel suggested as the context of Peter’s instruction should include 1 Peter 2:9-3:17 to get the full context.
Does Peter identify that women have a spiritual covering?
The term “covering” is not found in 1 Peter concerning wives. However, we also need to consider whether a responsibility of leadership over the wife is found in the text without the term covering. Hansel brought up example of a husband and wife arguing:
If it’s true that her husband is to be her covering, then the other half of that teaching is also true, and she’d need to get back under “submission” so as to be “covered”.
The teaching that a husband is responsible for his wife’s behavior because he is a covering for her is not found in the Scripture. In fact, the covering/authority/responsibility teaching has caused great harm to the body of Christ and to many marriages. When a husband enters the marriage believing that he is responsible for his wife’s actions, it can lead to him believe that he is responsible for making her perfect. Many Christian husbands literally believe that God will hold them responsible for her behaviour and so it becomes a huge burden on their shoulders to deal with their own failures…and hers too! …