I’ll admit that this is a bible teaching that has been a struggle for me. When I have been in a war of the wills with a toddler who refuses to comply or a child who willfully disobeys, mustering up the courage to discipline, especially by force, is hard for me. Really hard. I mean, I don’t want to scar them or heaven forbid, not like me.
Spanking seems so… harsh.
In my experimental parenting I have learned something. I should model my parenting after the only perfect parent- God.
Think about it: Just as a parent disciplines a child, the Lord your God disciplines you for your own good.
And have you forgotten the encouraging words God spoke to you as his children? He said,
“My child, don’t make light of the Lord’s discipline,
and don’t give up when he corrects you.
For the Lord disciplines those he loves,
and he punishes each one he accepts as his child.”
As you endure this divine discipline, remember that God is treating you as his own children. Who ever heard of a child who is never disciplined by its father? If God doesn’t discipline you as he does all of his children, it means that you are illegitimate and are not really his children at all. Since we respected our earthly fathers who disciplined us, shouldn’t we submit even more to the discipline of the Father of our spirits, and live forever?
For our earthly fathers disciplined us for a few years, doing the best they knew how. But God’s discipline is always good for us, so that we might share in his holiness. No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening—it’s painful! But afterward there will be a peaceful harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way.
I correct and discipline everyone I love.
Lord, your discipline is good, for it leads to life and health.
2 Sam. 7:13
I will be his father, and he will be my son. If he sins, I will correct and discipline him with the rod, like any father would do.
- Is with Love
- Shows his parental claim
- Is painful
- Is good
- Is holy
- Is done with a rod of correction ( Click here for more on the “rod of correction.” )
But that’s God right? Not me? How can I parent like God? Am I supposed to spank?
Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger by the way you treat them. Rather, bring them up with the discipline and instruction that comes from the Lord.
1 Kings 1:6
About that time David’s son Adonijah… began boasting, “I will make myself king.” So he provided himself with chariots and charioteers and recruited fifty men to run in front of him. Now his father, King David, had never disciplined him at any time, even by asking, “Why are you doing that?”
Those who spare the rod of discipline hate their children. Those who love their children care enough to discipline them.
Discipline your children while there is hope. Otherwise you will ruin their lives.
Physical punishment cleanses away evil; such discipline purifies the heart.
A youngster’s heart is filled with foolishness, but physical discipline will drive it far away.
Don’t fail to discipline your children.They won’t die if you spank them. Physical discipline may well save them from death.
- Should not be in anger
- Done with God
- Purposed for salvation
- Is a must
- Will purify their hearts
- Drive out evil
- Prove my love
So what does the bible say about spanking? Do it. But do it the right way.
I thew out the methods pop psychology and modern parenting a long time ago. I am not trying to raise nice kids or successful kids. I am not even trying to raise good citizens. I am raising kingdom kids. My goal is to raise holy children, set apart children. My goal is to send out an army of children who love Jesus and who are passionately pursuing his mission to save the world. So for that I will take a chance. I will risk my comfort and walk in obedience even when I don’t get it. I will raise my kids God’s way.
For practical discipline check out Chip Ingram’s The Biblical Approach To Spanking.