Child Rearing

It is the responsibility of both the mother and father to raise their children. However, in scripture, the primary responsibility of raising children is placed on the father, not the mother (Ephesians 6:4, Isaiah 38:19). The women are to "help" the fathers raise them (Genesis 2:18,20).

Love is the basis of child training. I can selfishly spare myself the pain of spanking my child and send him out into the world unprepared for the natural suffering the world will give him. But an unselfish love realizes that an adjusted child is produced at the cost of pain.

God loves us and chastens us:

Hebrews 12:6-8, "For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons."

Because you do not spank them in anger, you could take them in your arms right after spanking them, kiss them, and tell them you love them, but they have to obey. This is what God demonstrated in:

Hosea 6:1, "Come, and let us return to the LORD; For He has torn, but He will heal us; He has stricken, but He will bind us up."

Spanking releases guilt. After the rod is used we can completely forget the incident. Fellowship is restored between us as parents and our children. But if, instead, we nag, scold, scream at or yell at, we maintain a hostility towards the child because he has not been corrected.

Anger and hostility is the price we pay for disobeying God by not using the rod consistently as God commands. When the rod is used consistently for the slightest disobedience, it is never associated with anger, because the parent disciplines the child with a patient, loving spirit in obedience to God.

No matter what the offense is the correction should not be done in anger. Children are, then, able to understand that this kind of correction is done in love. The rod then becomes a rod of correction and comfort, not abuse. Many children witness that they are glad their parents trained them with the paddle. The pain the rod inflicts on the body now, delivers from the pain the whole person would suffer later in life from a selfish will.

The Psalmist confirms this truth:

Psalm 119:67, "Before I was afflicted I transgressed; therefore have I kept thy word."

Psalm 119:71, "It is good for me that thou hast afflicted me; that I might learn thine ordinances."

Psalm 119:75, "I know, O LORD, that thy judgments are righteousness, and that thou in truthfulness hast afflicted me."

Discipline teaches self discipline. If we donít discipline him when he is young, heíll require more severe discipline when he is older. When we spank him, he learns to discipline himself to obey. He knows he has a choice, and he chooses the right one if he is disciplined correctly.

Lamentations 3:25-30, "The LORD is good to them that wait for Him; the soul which shall seek Him is good, and shall wait for, and quietly expect salvation of the LORD. It is good for a man when he bears a yoke in his youth. He will sit alone, and be silent, because he has born it upon him. He will give his cheek to him that smites him: he will be filled full with reproaches."

There is no tyranny in godly training. God gave us His example. Our relationship to our children should mimic the Fatherís relationship to us. His example teaches me the training of my children should be for their good. When my Father chastens me, it is not an angry reaction, it is an action toward me for my good.

Deuteronomy 5:29, "Oh, that there were such a heart in them, that they should fear me and keep my commands always, that it might be well with them and with their sons for ever."

Hebrews 12:10, "For they [human fathers] indeed for a few days chastened us as seemed best to them, but He for our profit, that we may be partakers of His holiness."

Usually, most discipline with younger children are for arguing with each other. When you disciplined them for this behavior, it shouldn't be because they are bothering you. They are usually pretty quiet about it anyway. But It's for their own good Ė to learn how to discuss a problem without fighting. It is a long process of learning.

Inconsistent use of the rod is tyrannical. Itís at our whim. To be consistent is extremely important. What could be more frustrating to a child than to never know what is really expected? It is our inconsistency which provokes and discourages our children. One day we feel stern and punish a certain disobedience. The next day, weíre more mellow or lazy and donít punish for the same thing. They become provoked to anger, become discouraged, and rebel. God says not to do that:

Ephesians 6:4, "And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord."

Colossians 3:21, "Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged."

Discipline with love is obedience to God. Some say, ďI tried it but it didnít work.Ē But, Itís not debatable. Itís Godís command. You can rest in the following verses:

Proverbs 19:18, "Chasten thy son while there is hope, and let not thy soul spare for his crying."

Proverbs 13:24, "He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes."

Proverbs 23:13-14, "Withhold not correction from the child: for if thou beatest him with the rod, he shall not die. Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell."

Hebrews 12:11, "Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it."

2 Samuel 22:31, "As for the Mighty One, his way is blameless; The word of the LORD is strong and tried in the fire: He is a protector to all that put their trust in Him."

Training and Admonition

Deuteronomy 6:4-7, "...The LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up."

Proverbs 22:6, "Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it."

Ephesians 6:1-4, "Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honour thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise) That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth. And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord."

Psalm 32:8, "I will instruct thee and guide thee in this way wherein thou shalt go: I will fix mine eyes upon thee."

1. Training is different from teaching (Proverbs 22:6; 1 Samuel 2:23-25,29; 3:13).

a. Admonition and the rod (Proverbs 22:15).
b. I love him too much to hurt him (Proverbs 13:24.)
c. There are other ways of correction ({Proverbs 23:13-14)
d. But he shouldnít be stifled (Proverbs 29:15).
e. Heís too young (Proverbs 19:18).
f. It might cause more rebellion (Proverbs 29:17).
g. But every child is different.

2. Love is the basis of child training.

a. God loves and chastens (Hebrews 12:6-8; Hosea 6:1).
b. Spanking releases guilt (Proverbs 20:30; Psalm 119:67,71,75).
c. Discipline teaches self discipline (Lamentations 3:25-30).

3. There is no tyranny in godly training.

a. God gave us His example (Deuteronomy 5:29; Hebrews 12:10).
b. Inconsistent use of the rod is tyrannical (Ephesians 6:4; Colossians 3:21).

4. Discipline with love is obedience to God (2 Samuel 22:31; Hebrews 12:11).


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