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Last Updated: Dec 13th, 2003 - 09:40:48 

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Why Christian Women Should not Join the Military: A Plea from a Woman Veteran
By Mrs. Richard Downin
Jun 25, 2003, 14:58

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In the New Testament there are many direct commands that speak to women about how they are to live. There are also many examples of godly women who served the Lord. These commands and examples prove, I believe, that the military is no place for a Christian woman.

The first direct command is found in Titus 2:5, "To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed." Women are to be keepers at home. Not just "housekeepers," but keepers at home. How can they keep (protect) the occupants of their homes if they are off fighting in a war? If they are not keepers at home they are blaspheming the word of God.

The next direct command I would like to examine is found in 1 Peter 3:4, "But it let be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price." To God the meek and quiet spirit is worth a great price. He values the gentleness of a woman higher than any other adorning that she can put on the outside. If a woman is to serve in the military, she can not be gentle and quiet. The military is an occupation that requires its members to continually prepare for war. War by nature is anything but a gentle and quiet procedure. War is about fighting, killing and destroying.

When a woman is in the military she needs to be agressive and dominant. It is unsafe if she is not. Her comrades depend on her to be that way. When I was a flight engineer, I worked with a woman pilot a few times who had a gentle voice. She was asked to speak louder, and many felt uncomfortable around her because she seemed to lack command. In her proper sphere, this gentleness is perfectly in its place; in the military it can be life-threatening. Men are better suited to command forcefully.

The next verse I would like to examine is 1 Timothy 2:9" "In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold or pearls of costly array." The first phrase that stands out to me in this verse is "modest apparel." When a woman is in the military, she must wear men's apparel. The clothing that I had to wear was anything but modest. I wore a dark-colored T-shirt, battle dress pants, a battle dress jacket over the T-shirt and black combat boots everyday. When working inside, airmen are allowed to remove their jackets. And I can tell you from eight years experience that the men enjoy seeing the young female soldiers in their T-shirts.

There is another word that is in direct opposition to what is expected of a strong military airman. That word is "shamefacedness." Shamefacedness is not talked about much anymore, nor is it practiced, even among Christian women. Nevertheless, it is in the Bible. To be shamefaced is to not stare at men or hold their gaze for a long time. When a woman is in the military, she works very closely with other men and must look at them. She may at times be tempted to hold their gazes while working alongside them.

In the same chapter of Timothy in verse 12 there is another command" "But I suffer not a woman to teach nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence." Women in the military are almost always placed in authority over a male. There is a rank structure in the military that allows one to outrank someone else very quickly. This is clearly not God's design for Christian women to order men around. This does not mean that a women are not intelligent or strong; it simply means that women are not to rule over men.

The last and possibly most important direct command is in 1 Thesselonians 5:22: "Abstain from all appearance of evil." When I was in the military I had to work very closely with men. Some men were married, some were divorced and some were single. There were several times when I had to work nighshift for a few months. Each time I was on this shift with only one other male. We worked all night together, just he and I. I truly believe that I gave the appearance of evil when I spent entire nights alone with men who were not my husband. I have also had to literally sleep next to men who were not my husband. Nights in the woods were spent close to these men in a tent or in sleeping bags. I also spent many nights sleeping next to other men in other areas. No godly Christian woman would dare sleep next to a man other than her husband night after night, but that is what the military requires. The military requires that you become like a man. You must do what the men do. This is not the place of any woman, but it is especially important that women who profess the name of Christ avoid all such situations.

© Copyright 2003 by LAF/

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