Christian insight on spanking your child

Staff Writer
Santa Rosa Press Gazette

Dear editor, 

The American Academy of Pediatricians just put out the latest reasons for not spanking your child. (but, it sounded more like they meant reasons for not seriously beating your child). There is a big difference.

Spanking a child, for a Christian, is a God-approved method of correction. You need to read Proverbs 23:12-14 for your Godly approval. Then, let’s analyze what it says.

Proverbs 23:12 says, "Apply your heart to instruction," (i.e. listen) "and your ears to words of knowledge" (i.e. hear wisdom).

Proverbs 23:13 says, "Do not withhold correction from a child" (i.e. don’t ignore the need), "and if you beat him with a rod, he will not die" (i.e. not beat him with a club or a hammer or a pipe or a fist, but only a rod).

Proverbs 23:14 says, "You shall beat him with a rod and deliver his soul from Hell." This is a little more complex, but I’d say it’s important.

A few concepts are needed (my definitions): 

  • Child: a person under the age of 6
  • Correction: need to change a behavior
  • Rod: strap, belt, or your open hand
  • Spanking area: rear side
  • Length of spanking: five or fewer strokes

If you are the spanker, the presumption is that you are a Christian, you understand the difference between right and wrong, and you are correcting (labor of love), and not venting or raging. Spanking teaches both obedience and proper fear of their parents to the child. This is a good thing. Remember that the Bible verse Psalms 111:10 says, "The beginning of wisdom is fear of the Lord."

The link to the soul is as follows.  If, as a child, one learns how to obey, then later in life, as an adult, they will be equipped to deal with sin. See [Pro. 22:6] A non-repentant sinner will go to hell.  So, as you teach your children obedience (which may likely include some loving spankings) you will be equipping them to know how to be personally obedient to Jesus Christ later in life when they are an adult. (i.e. to be saved) [Pro. 29.15] is what happens when a child is left to themselves. (uncorrected)



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