Women in Combat

Former Secretary of Defense, Leon Panetta and the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff, Martin Dempsey have attempted to erase one of the last distinctions between men and women by “allowing” women to serve in combat units. Panetta stated, “Allowing women to serve in combat roles will strengthen the U.S. military’s ability to win wars.”[1]

In spite of Panetta’s attempt to fabricate the truth, women in combat roles do not add anything to a nation’s defense in terms of combat effectiveness. As a rule, women have not played a major part in combat throughout world history for the same reason they do not play professional football; they do not perform as well as men in these roles. Sadly, one need only look at domestic abuse cases to see that in general, women are physically weaker than men.

To be clear, there are women who can pass current combat unit physical standards, but that does not mean they should be allowed in the units or in combat. Although, women do not add much to our nation’s defense in terms of combat effectiveness, and will most likely degrade it, the main reason women should not serve in combat is because it is against God’s order for the universe. Women are to be respected and protected, not competed against and shot at.

Gender roles, like many things taken for granted as part of the founding culture, were not addressed in the Constitution.  But, if we as a nation are looking to the Constitution to address every aspect of our lives we are missing the point. The founders understood the Bible fulfills that purpose, because the wisdom to establish America, as the most successful nation in history, came from their biblical worldview.   We must also look for guidance and direction on how to live our lives and what public policies we should pursue from a proper interpretation of the Bible.

To do this, we must interpret the Bible as it was meant to be understood, being careful not to add anything to or subtract anything from what it says.[2] After doing this, we must follow its clear dictates without using human reason to justify personal positions or desires.

Many people today look at gender roles as an equality issue, but the issue is not that men are better than women, or that women are better than men; they are different and we should celebrate those differences instead trying to obliterate them.

Women were created by God to be helpers to men and, as women know, all men need help. This is neither a tyrannical invention of men nor a curse bestowed by God, but the single purpose for which God created women.[3]

Men and women are equal in creation, in the fall, and in redemption. We are all made in the image of God,[4] and the image of God is revealed in both men and women. Our gender oneness reflects our triune God and His creation, because God designed everything in creation for unity. He made everything to fit together with everything else. Adam was unable to make more image bearers of God without Eve, and Eve was unable to do this without Adam. It is only through their unity they are able to fulfill God’s dominion mandate.[5]

Men and women are also both equally guilty in the fall because they both broke God’s Law: they both ate of the forbidden fruit, and they both tried to cover themselves up. One gender was not more culpable than the other, but Adam is more responsible for the fall than Eve, because Adam understood what he was doing whereas Eve was deceived.[6]

For this reason, God curses them individually, by gender and it is from these curses we get a better understanding of the roles God intended each gender to play. “Because Adam listened to the voice of his wife”[7] instead of the commands of God, God cursed Adam’s primary sphere of stewardship, to cultivate the ground, which is labor outside of the home.[8] God also cursed Eve’s primary sphere of stewardship, child birth, but after doing so He reinforces His divine order to have the husband rule over the wife.

This divine order is revealed in the Genesis story before the fall. God created man for the purpose of cultivating and keeping the garden in order to transform it into an earthly temple in which God will dwell with man. Man is defined according to this purpose and before Eve arrives we see Adam exercising authority over God’s creation.  “God formed every beast of the field and bird of the sky and brought them to Adam to name and whatever Adam called them it was its name.”[9]

Next we see that Adam does not have a helper “suitable” for him.[10] So God caused Adam to go into a deep sleep, then He took one of his ribs and from his rib He fashioned a woman and brought her to Adam.[11] Adam names her woman, because she “is bone of his bone and flesh of his flesh.”[12] In naming her, Adam is exercising authority over her and from this it is clear Eve was created under Adam’s domestic government as his “helper” and she cannot be defined outside the purpose for her creation or from whom she was created.

Woman was given to Adam by God, and Adam names her and what he named her is what she was called. She is of the man, to the man, for the man and is named by the man, which is ordained by God and is all very good. Adam names her in oneness to himself and his words are an exercise of his authority over her. His naming of her is also an obedient act to God. This is God’s express design and purpose for women.[13]

Further support of this is found in Jesus referring to Adam and Eve as historical figures[14] and in the divinely inspired words of Paul: “Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, …, teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbandsso that the word of God will not be dishonored.”[15] “For man does not originate from woman, but woman from man; for indeed man was not created for the woman’s sake, but woman for the man’s sake.”[16] “But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man,…”[17]Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church,…”[18]Wives, be subject to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.”[19]

We must also recognize, women fulfilling their role, as man’s helper, is not a one sided proposition. It not only fulfills men’s needs, it fulfills women’s needs as well. Cooperation with another to achieve a common goal is how work is accomplished and positions of subordination are critical to every task. Subordination is not an inequality of humanity. An employer is no more human than one of his employees and men are no more human than women.

To fulfill their God given role, women should never be the boss of men, they should not be the rival or competitor of men, and they should not be out to achieve a different agenda then men. Instead, they should be the helper of men in fulfilling the dominion mandate.

This does not mean woman cannot or should not work outside the home. Women’s primary role is domestic, but she is not restricted to it just like men are not prohibited from helping in the home as some men may desire their wives to believe.

In the description of the worthy woman from Proverbs 31, she works outside the home, but in doing so she does not neglect her primary sphere of stewardship. Before wives decide to work outside the home, they should discuss it with their husband to determine the effect it will have on their family and God’s mandate for us.

To modern Americans, all of this may sound archaic, chauvinistic and unreasonable. Many may say women should be defined by their job and the money they make, not by men. Yet, such thoughts are not in submission to God’s will and they lead to death and disorder, which is to say they are perverted. In order for women to be defined by their job they must abandon the job God has given to them.

Each one of us, men and women alike, must recognize the nobility and critical importance of women’s God given role. Her role is vital and should not be diminished. Stable marriages and healthy families are essential to sustaining a population and guaranteeing posterity. Without enough women fulfilling their God given role, birth rates decline below what is required to sustain a nation and in time the nation commits cultural suicide. If not enough children are born to maintain the nation then the nation will die.

Placing women in combat is just another step into cultural oblivion. It may be too late to reverse this course and perhaps it is what we deserve for the seeds we have sown.

Character is always lost when a high ideal is sacrificed on the altar of conformity and popularity.[20] For a nation that now sacrifices its unborn children for sexual promiscuity and freedom to choose pleasure over responsibility, it is easy to also sacrifice their women for the illusion of gender equality.

[1] Leon Panetta, January 24, 2013.

[2] Deuteronomy 4:2, 12:32; Revelation 22:18-19

[3] Genesis 2:18

[4] Genesis 1:27

[5] Alan Dunn, Distinctive Femininity: Helper, September 11, 2011.

[6] 1Timothy 2:14

[7] Genesis 3:17

[8] Genesis 2:5, 15

[9] Genesis 2:19

[10] Genesis 2:20

[11] Genesis 2:21-22

[12] Genesis 2:23

[13] Alan Dunn, Distinctive Femininity: Helper, September 11, 2011.

[14] Matthew 19:4-6

[15] Titus 2:3-5

[16] 1 Corinthians 11:8-9

[17] 1 Timothy 2:12

[18] Ephesians 5:22-23

[19] Colossians 3:18

[20] Charles Spurgeon


11 thoughts on “Women in Combat

  1. This was nothing more than a PR move by the DoD to take the focus off of the issue of women being raped and sexually assaulted by the US military.
    The fact that US troops can’t stop rape in the military shows that we can’t trust that women would be protected in combat.


  2. Comment: The last line in Ephesians 5:25-33 seems to indicate a mutual respect that one may find in a godly marriage. If only the world would follow Christ in marriages and all relationships including combat!

    Ephesians 5:33 Each of you, however, should love his wife as himself, and a wife should respect her husband.

    AmericanFoundingPrinciples: I do not dispute that husbands and wives should have mutual respect as we understand the modern term ‘respect’ and your points about marriages and combat are valid. That being said, we must look at what the original Greek words mean to be sure we understand the intended meaning of the passage. In Ephesians 5:25, 28, & 33 men are called to ‘love’ their wives and in Ephesians 5:33 women are called to ‘respect’ their husbands. The Greek word for ‘love’, used in v25, 28, & 33, is agapao (ag-pa-ah’-o) which means to love in a social or moral sense. The Greek word for ‘respect’ in v33 is phobeo (fob-eh’-o) which means to frighten or be alarmed; by analogy to be in awe of or to revere aka reverence. I hope everyone can see there is a big difference between these two words and what they command from each gender.

    Additionally, few people understand that the Greek words for ‘husband’ and ‘wife’ are the same for ‘man’ and ‘woman’ (aner and gune), because Greek does not have specific words for ‘husband’ or ‘wife’. In Greek they are understood to mean ‘husband’ or ‘wife’ when used in conjunction with a possessive pronoun.

    Possessive pronouns are used in Ephesians 5:25-32 in conjunction with ‘man’ and ‘women’, but in the second part of v33 it drops the possessive pronoun in front of both ‘man’ (aner) and ‘woman’ (gune). In the ASV it is translated as “and let the wife see that she fear her husband.” It could also be translated “and let the woman see that she revere man.”

    This translation is supported by and corresponds with 1 Corinthians 11:3 “But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.” In this, God is laying out His hierarchical order between Christ, men and women. Christ is the head of all men, men are the head of all women, and God is the head of Christ. This means Christ is the head of men in all things and men are the head of women in all things to include the home the church and the government.

  3. Question: In the Old Testament there is a story about Deborah, Judge, Prophetess and Warrior …These rulers were called “judges,” an office that traced back to a time when Moses appointed assistants to help him resolve disputes among the Hebrews (Exodus 18). So a judge was still an appointed assistant or helper. I always was taught that Deborah was an exception in that Deborah had to step up because the man wouldn’t!!!

    I find Deborah’s story interesting….and would like AFP’s take on this.

    AmericanFoundingPrinciples: Deborah was a Prophetess of God who also acted in the unofficial capacity as an adviser and counselor. Although, she was a judge from the book of Judges, she and the other judges from Judges are not like the ones appointed by Moses; i.e., she was not an elected or appointed official of the Hebrew government as Judges 5:9 points out. Therefore, definitively she was not a “ruler” as you indicated in your question.

    Additionally, although she had to encourage Barrack to do what God commanded, she did not lead men into combat, Barrack did. She only went with him, so even in this capacity she was different from the other judges who protected Israel in a martial way, like Gideon and Samson.

    Hermeneutically, one should never allow narrative passages of Scripture to cancel out explicit precepts, laws, statutes, and doctrines of Scripture. Moreover, when comparing examples to law; examples have no strength when the question is about law. Therefore, Deborah is an unusual case, but her narrative story does negate Paul’s words from Ephesians 5:22 and 1 Corinthians 11:3.

    John Knox had this to say about it, “To the first I answer that particular examples do establish no common law. The causes were known to God alone why he took the spirit of wisdom and force from all men of those ages and did so mightily assist women against nature, and against his ordinary course…. With these women, I say, did God work potently, and miraculously, yea to them he gave most singular grace and privilege. But who has commanded that a public, yea, a tyrannical and most wicked law be established upon these examples?”

  4. Love this page, And I agree with you Matt, WOMEN!!!!!! should not join the Military, they don’t help us hardley at all,one Question, are women allowed to be a DOCTOR or a NURSE in the Military? just Curious!!!!! 🙂

  5. I would agree with your position. I believe women in a combat role would further hamper readiness by destroying the culture of already existing combat units. This culture is one of (but not the only) primary factors that develop the sense of cohesiveness in a unit; that true bond between men that aids them in being an aggressive, deadly force. Something that I’m sure I don’t need to describe to you.

    I admit, I have some trouble accepting some of the biblical nature of your position, but I think perhaps that is due to my ignorance of the bible or my inexperience with the church. Either way,I do notice at least one coincidence here between one of your thoughts and one of my own. You say that, “To fulfill their God given role, women should never be the boss of men, they should not be the rival or competitor of men, and they should not be out to achieve a different agenda then men. Instead, they should be the helper of men in fulfilling the dominion mandate”. I have, for a while now, felt that there is some connection between women’s suffrage and the demasculinization of men both politically and culturally. We are seemingly, as a nation, abandoning traditional values in favor of the “playground” mentality of being nice to everyone, and we are being pushed towards an attitude of indifference. The implication is that we should stand for nothing in order to get along. I feel that this is at least partly occurring because of the “conflict” that exists in the thinking of men and women.

    To connect this with your post, I suppose that I am also insinuating that putting women in a combat unit further demasculinizes men and pushes them into a position that weakens them in more ways than just combat effectiveness.

    • I make arguments based on biblical truth, because that is the standard the founding culture used. The principles of our founding culture are biblical principles, so in order to better understand the nature of American law and the Constitution we must look to the Bible.

      As a side note, I don’t believe Christianity because the founders did or because of tradition; I believe it because facts support it and the Bible is a self-authenticating book. If one wants to disprove Christianity, they need only disprove that Christ lived, died and rose again from the dead. Many people have attempted this, but they either quit in frustration or became believers.

      There is more documentation to the life, death and resurrection of Christ than there is documentation for the life of any other historical figure. We know things are true when two or more people documented an event in which they did not have a way of corroborating their accounts, but their accounts are similar.

      I concur with your root cause analysis concerning women’s suffrage. Universal suffrage is a sufferable evil imposed upon our society by refugees from the failed 1848 European socialist uprising. In other words universal suffrage is a concept either devised or popularized by Karl Marx. Voting is not a right as many today believe, it is a duty and it should only be bestowed upon those who have integrity and applicable knowledge of how our governmental system is supposed to work. The men who were bestowed the duty of voting at our founding were to do so on behalf of their family. Woman’s suffrage divided the family, such that the husband was no longer the head of the household, because women could thumb their noses at their husbands and vote independent of their position.

  6. Commander, I disagree with you regarding women in combat. While I am appreciative of your service to our country, I believe you’ve got it wrong with this topic. You seem to imply that women are property of the men and that “you know what’s best for us”. That’s horribly misogynistic. I do not appreciate a God or a Christ or a man that would make me a second-hand person. This has nothing to do with thumbing our noses at our husbands…this is about freedom. I could go on but I doubt you’d consider what I have to say in any serious debate.

    • Dear Miss West Virginia Democrat,

      I neither stated nor implied women are property of men and for the record please allow to make it clear I don’t believe that to be the case either.

      I am not sure if you read my entire article as I thought I was very clear about the relationship of women to men and men to women in the article, i.e., we are equal in our humanity, meaning one is not better than the other or even more important than the other and certainly not second-hand to the other, but we have different God given rolls to fill.

      I assume you work or have worked for someone in your life, if so did the person who was responsible for the work you were doing own you? I seriously doubt this was the case, and so it is with the relationship of men and women, no ownership just submission, for both men and women, to God and His word.

      Therefore, there is no need to resort to ad hominem attack in your response and I will be glad to entertain a debate on this subject, just so long as we can agree on what truth is and from where it is derived. This is an epistemological question, so I ask you how do you know what you believe to be true is in fact true?

      Did Christ live, die, and rise again from the dead? Is He who He said He is? If you don’t know the answers to these questions or you believe them to be false I recommend you watch The Truth Project with Del Tackett and determine for yourself if there is in fact truth to be found there.

      May the Holy Spirit open your eyes so that you can see God for who He is instead who you want Him to be.

      God bless you,

      Commander Shipley

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