The issue of women serving in combat, or other typically male related roles, came up in another thread. I put this in the family forum for a reason. This is a family issue. This is a marriage issue. This is a headship issue. Scripture makes it clear that some roles are particularly suited for men and women. There are many tasks that are gender neutral. But there are many that clearly are not. We need not discuss the obvious fact that only women can be wives and mothers and only men can be husbands and fathers. I hope that we don't need to discuss the fact that men are to lead the family as the head and women are to help them in godly submission. And, it is also established in Scripture that each is to do this regardless of how well their spouse fulfills or doesn't fulfill their own roles. With this in mind, let's talk. Is a woman suitable for combat? Is she as capable physically, mentally or emotionally? What about women leaders? Corporate? Military? Political? And, if we step further into the secular arena, is there a point where headship is no longer an issue? A major issue here is also whether or not there is biblical justification to separate secular and religious. I'm going to line up some Scripture here that is pertinent to the discussion, to some degree at least. Then we'll see how folks think through these things. Women are: (references and subtitles from MacArthur Topical Bible) Weaker than man. 1 Pet 3:7 Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered. Timid. Is 19:16 In that day Egypt will be like women, and will be afraid and fear because of the waving of the hand of the Lord of hosts, which He waves over it. Jer 50:37 A sword is against their horses, Against their chariots, And against all the mixed peoples who are in her midst; And they will become like women. A sword is against her treasures, and they will be robbed. Jer 51:30 The mighty men of Babylon have ceased fighting, They have remained in their strongholds; Their might has failed, They became like women; They have burned her dwelling places, The bars of her gate are broken. Nah 3:13 Surely, your people in your midst are women! The gates of your land are wide open for your enemies; Fire shall devour the bars of your gates. Forms of employment, Household work. Gen 18:6 So Abraham hurried into the tent to Sarah and said, “Quickly, make ready three measures of fine meal; knead it and make cakes.” Prov 31:15 She also rises while it is yet night, And provides food for her household, And a portion for her maidservants. Agriculture. Ruth 2:8 Then Boaz said to Ruth, “You will listen, my daughter, will you not? Do not go to glean in another field, nor go from here, but stay close by my young women. Tending sheep. Gen 29:9 Now while he was still speaking with them, Rachel came with her father’s sheep, for she was a shepherdess. Ex 2:16 Now the priest of Midian had seven daughters. And they came and drew water, and they filled the troughs to water their father’s flock. Drawing and carrying water. Gen 24:15–16 And it happened, before he had finished speaking, that behold, Rebekah, who was born to Bethuel, son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, came out with her pitcher on her shoulder. 16 Now the young woman was very beautiful to behold, a virgin; no man had known her. And she went down to the well, filled her pitcher, and came up. 1 Sam 9:11 As they went up the hill to the city, they met some young women going out to draw water, and said to them, “Is the seer here?” John 4:7 A woman of Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give Me a drink.” Grinding grain. Matt 24:41 Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left. Luke 17:35 Two women will be grinding together: the one will be taken and the other left. Spinning. Prov 31:13–14 She seeks wool and flax, And willingly works with her hands. 14 She is like the merchant ships, She brings her food from afar. Embroidery. Prov 31:22 She makes tapestry for herself; Her clothing is fine linen and purple. Celebrating the victories of the nation. Ex 15:20–21 Then Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took the timbrel in her hand; and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dances. 21 And Miriam answered them: “Sing to the Lord, For He has triumphed gloriously! The horse and its rider He has thrown into the sea!” Judg 11:34 When Jephthah came to his house at Mizpah, there was his daughter, coming out to meet him with timbrels and dancing; and she was his only child. Besides her he had neither son nor daughter. 1 Sam 18:6–7 Now it had happened as they were coming home, when David was returning from the slaughter of the Philistine, that the women had come out of all the cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet King Saul, with tambourines, with joy, and with musical instruments. 7 So the women sang as they danced, and said: “Saul has slain his thousands, And David his ten thousands.” Attending funerals as mourners. Jer 9:17 Thus says the Lord of hosts: “Consider and call for the mourning women, That they may come; And send for skillful wailing women, That they may come. Jer 9:20 Yet hear the word of the Lord, O women, And let your ear receive the word of His mouth; Teach your daughters wailing, And everyone her neighbor a lamentation. The list of those who train and go to war are inevitably men/sons. Numbers 1:20 Now the children of Reuben, Israel’s oldest son, their genealogies by their families, by their fathers’ house, according to the number of names, every male individually, from twenty years old and above, all who were able to go to war: Numbers 1:32 From the sons of Joseph, the children of Ephraim, their genealogies by their families, by their fathers’ house, according to the number of names, from twenty years old and above, all who were able to go to war: 1 Chronicles 5:18 The sons of Reuben, the Gadites, and half the tribe of Manasseh had forty-four thousand seven hundred and sixty valiant men, men able to bear shield and sword, to shoot with the bow, and skillful in war, who went to war. 1 Chronicles 7:11 All these sons of Jediael were heads of their fathers’ houses; there were seventeen thousand two hundred mighty men of valor fit to go out for war and battle. 1 Chronicles 12:1 Now these were the men who came to David at Ziklag while he was still a fugitive from Saul the son of Kish; and they were among the mighty men, helpers in the war, 1 Chronicles 12:24 of the sons of Judah bearing shield and spear, six thousand eight hundred armed for war; 1 Chronicles 12:25 of the sons of Simeon, mighty men of valor fit for war, seven thousand one hundred; What about women leaders? 2 Kings 11:1 When Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she arose and destroyed all the royal heirs. Judges 4:4-9 - Deborah goes with Barak to battle and says, "nevertheless there will be no glory for you in the journey you are taking, for the LORD will sell Sisera into the hand of a woman." This is obviously a dishonor to Barak. Women ruling over a nation is a curse Is 3:12 As for My people, children are their oppressors, And women rule over them. O My people! Those who lead you cause you to err, And destroy the way of your paths.” A word search with men and war brought up 55 verses. With women and war only 2 verses came up, neither of them referring women as fighting (Judg 21:22; Jer 41:16).