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Author Topic: Should We Spank Our Children  (Read 62779 times)

Dana Pescator

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Should We Spank Our Children
« on: August 22, 2003, 02:57:00 PM »
I just read an article about spanking children, and I don't think that I am in agreement with it. Beating children has never been the answer to discipline. There are many great books which prove this. Children need to be loved. The old saying that you get more bees with honey than with vinegar still holds true.

What do you are think about this subject? Are we making our children into monsters by beating them? It seems those who beat their children, their children grow up violent and disjointed and troubled. I hear about it on the news all the time. We need to find better ways to discipline our kids instead of violence.

Dan

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Re: Should We Spank Our Children
« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2003, 04:13:42 PM »
I agree. I can see how this situation can get so frustrating for parents, but children act out because they are disconnected and want attention. To spank them would be to make them as violent as you are being. It will send them such confusing messages that they will never become disciplined. Children are precious, but they just don't have the ability or strength to grasp christian boundaries and laws without peaceful prodding. Spanking is wrong as we agree, and so we must seek alternative methods.

There is really no quick fix solution for having children behave, but a time-out certainly will help them stop and think about their actions. With a little patience and careful planning you can discipline your children without violence to them.

One way is to not scream at them when they do something wrong, but give them a pat on the back and say you know they'll do better next time. Give them positive stimulation and feedback and they'll respond positively. They won't be trying to get your attention if you head that off by giving them your attention beforehand. If you give them positive attention, they won't be looking to get negative attention.

Children are not inherently evil, despite what calvinists claim, I see love and adoration in their eyes when I look at them. Think what must be going through their little minds when parents hurt them and physically, mentally, or emotionally abuse them by barking out orders or punishing them.

I am praying that other Christians will have some good wisdom and sound advice for parents, hopefully which doesn't include hurting children or causing them pain by spanking. There is enough pain in the world.


Glenda

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Re: Should We Spank Our Children
« Reply #2 on: August 22, 2003, 07:03:08 PM »
WHAT SAYETH THE SCRIPTURE:
Prov.15:10
 Correction [is] grievous unto him that forsaketh the way: [and] he that hateth reproof shall die.
 
Prov.15:11
  Hell and destruction [are] before the LORD: how much more then the hearts of the children of men?

Prov.22:6
 Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
 
Prov.22:15
 Foolishness [is] bound in the heart of a child; [but] the rod of correction shall drive it far from him.

Prov.23:12
  Speak not in the ears of a fool: for he will despise the wisdom of thy words.

prov. 23:13
 Withhold not correction from the child: for [if] thou beatest him with the rod, he shall not die.
 
prov.23:14
 Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell.
Prov.23:15
  My son, if thine heart be wise, my heart shall rejoice, even mine.
Prov.23:22
  Hearken unto thy father that begat thee, and despise not thy mother when she is old.
 
  I am not an advocate for "abusing children" and I would never "abuse my , or any other other child in my charge. But if I cant correct and or spank a child when it is needed I wont keep them. I remember parents saying , "it hurts me more than it hurts my child and I remember thinking ...yeah right! but as a parent I know it does hurt a loving, godly parent to spank a child more  than it hurts the child. These people who are coming around saying dont spank are in contradiction to what the bible says, and as a parent to 4 grown sons and a 10 year old girl I will say, you better be spanking if they need it or you'll pay for it later! This day in time people blow kids egos up and brag on their kids and NO-Where in the bible is that talked about, but the bible DOES talk about being humble.
Also the "world " says that we should'nt hit or punish our children I would like to remind you that :

1John 4:5,6
 says:  They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them.  
We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.
 
Just my Humble opinion!
Glenda
And all the inhabitants of the earth [are] reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and [among] the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou? Daniel 4:35

Bryan

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Re: Should We Spank Our Children
« Reply #3 on: August 22, 2003, 09:27:14 PM »
WHAT SAYETH THE SCRIPTURE

Words of wisdom, Glenda.  Scripture is our only guide to raising children.  I can't believe the comments I am seeing in this thread from Dana and Dan.

Dana said:
Beating children has never been the answer to discipline

Parents have spanked their kids since the dawn of time.  Now in this politically correct age we have Oprah Winfrey to tell us what parents have not known all this time--spanking our children is not the answer!!!  Dana, I got spanked when I was a kid.  And most of the time I NEEDED to be spanked.  And the next time I started to do that same naughty thing again, my parents only needed to give me the "look" and I knew they meant business.  

There are many great books which prove this.

Well, Dana, the greatest book of all proves these other "great" books wrong.

Proverbs 23:13 - Withhold not correction from the child: for [if] thou beatest him with the rod, he shall not die.
 
Do you understand what God is saying here?  The child will not die if you beat him.  If you love him, you will spank him.  It's that simple.  I don't care what all of your books from all of these psychobabble teachers say.  The Bible is clear that spanking is necessary and is not destructive to kids.

It seems those who beat their children, their children grow up violent and disjointed and troubled. I hear about it on the news all the time.

If you mean beat as in beat up to the point of causing physical harm, yes, you are right.  That is not discipline; it is abuse.  And no one here is arguing in favor of abuse.  But spanking a kid on the behind or slapping his wrists or the back of his legs is not abuse.  If done with the proper motives and common sense, it is loving discipline.

Dan said:
One way is to not scream at them when they do something wrong, but give them a pat on the back and say you know they'll do better next time.

ROTFLOL!!!!!     Dan, have you seen the kids of parents who do this?  There is one word to describe them.  BRATS!!!!  When I see parents trying to "reason" with their kids this way, I feel like taking the parents aside and slapping some sense into THEM.  Kids are emotionally immature.  Sometimes the only way to get through to them is to speak the language they understand.  Spanking.  That is why the Bible says not to spare the rod.

Children are not inherently evil, despite what calvinists claim

Psalm 58:3   The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies.

Sorry, Dan, but God disagrees with you.  Children are inherently evil just as all men are inherently evil and need to be born again to be freed from the bondage of sin.  We can believe your words, or we can believe God's Word.

Think what must be going through their little minds when parents hurt them and physically, mentally, or emotionally abuse them by barking out orders or punishing them.

I'm sure what goes through their head when parents "bark out" orders to them is what goes on in our heads when we don't like the orders we are given by our authority figures.  Our prideful hearts inwardly rebel against that authority.  That is because the heart is evil above all things and desperately wicked.  We don't like anyone telling us what to do.  That is why man wants the Ten Commandments removed from public display everywhere he goes.  He doesn't want to be reminded that God has laid down the law and told man what to do and not to do.  

I am praying that other Christians will have some good wisdom and sound advice for parents, hopefully which doesn't include hurting children or causing them pain by spanking.

And I am praying that other Christians will have the good wisdom to seek out God's Word for direction in rearing children and not the "we shouldn't spank our kids" false teachers who abound these days.

Glenda said:

and as a parent to 4 grown sons and a 10 year old girl I will say, you better be spanking if they need it or you'll pay for it later!

And all God's people said,  AMEN!





R.ellis

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Re: Should We Spank Our Children
« Reply #4 on: August 22, 2003, 10:09:43 PM »
No need for me to quote any scriptures on this subject as Glenda covered them rather well.  I would however like to submit my thoughts...

Having grown up in the country in a large family I have seen my fair share of "whippings".  By today's "enlightened" standards they would have been more fairly classified as abuse.  But these types of whippings have always been the norm all throughout the ages until this one.   We are all familiar with images of by-gone days in classrooms of teachers having a whipping switch or stick hanging above the chalkboard.  I myself have felt the end of those paddles during my school years of the 70's.  I will wholeheartedly conclude that I needed those whippings then from both my earthly Father and from the Schoolteacher.  And guess what, I'm over 40 and still getting whippings from my Heavenly Father (Heb 12:5-11)

I'm  a firm believer one should lay aside personal thought, human teachings on such subjects, and go solely to scripture for guidance.  The Lord lays on the heavy burden of parents to use firm discipline in raising their children.  Of course it must be based on Love, but at times the rod, or in the case of my children a paddle is called for.

Paddling a child is indeed a painful exercise for both parent and child.  I have often marvelled at the way a child behaves for the next few days afterwards, it's as if you have a whole new kid.  The Lord knows what He's doing when He tells us to discipline them firmly.  Spanking children, in my opinion, instills in them a healthy fear and reverence for their parents.  That's indeed the same principal the Lord is instilling in us when He spanks us.

To conclude, I believe a thorough study in the fall of man, or man's total depravity will reveal to anyone with a spirtual mind that children are not the little, if you will, "angel's" the world makes them out to be.  There is plenty of scripture to show otherwise.  I'll leave those scriptures for someone else to bring forward...  *

*As I was typing this Bryan already brought some of these forward


Glenda

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Re: Should We Spank Our Children
« Reply #5 on: August 22, 2003, 11:16:07 PM »
Here is a link to an excellent article on this site dealing with how to train your child in a Godly manner:

http://www.mountainretreatorg.net/articles/loving_art_of_spanking.shtml

And all the inhabitants of the earth [are] reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and [among] the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou? Daniel 4:35

judykanova

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Re: Should We Spank Our Children
« Reply #6 on: August 23, 2003, 03:55:16 AM »
Quote
And all God's people said,  AMEN!

I add my AMEN! to Bryan's for Glenda's initial
post.  One but needs to compare the integrity and character evidenced in those of earlier generations who were raised along biblical guidelines, against  the pedominantly morally bankrupt generation of today, (exceptions of course like our Rebel and those raised by godly parents),  to know that God's way is the best way.

As already noted,  the Bible in no way advocates abuse.  Just the opposite is true.  Namely,  responsible parenting rooted in love, with a view of children as blessings, towards whom we are to be good 'stewards'.

And Let's not forget about the worse type of abuse of all -- emotional/psychological abuse from permissive, indifferent, or uncaring parents who neglect the discipline of their children.  

Eph 6:4[/u]

4 And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.


Col 3:21

21 Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged.



judy

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Jen

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Re: Should We Spank Our Children
« Reply #7 on: August 23, 2003, 10:37:13 AM »
Much good Biblical advice and scripture has been given on this subject. I just wanted to quickly add my 2 cents worth. I grew up in a home where... I was NOT spanked. I was disrespectful, a backtalker, rebellious, a liar, a hater, and violent. My Dad chose not to spank me, I wish he had. I wish my parents would have set boundaries for me and not worried so much about my "feelings". I lied and decieved my parents and had no respect for them much of my up bringing. I recieved the yelling and cursing instead, so for my teenage years that is how I dealed with confrontation, I would just yell louder and curse more than my opponent.
Then...came Salvation! I was in such a pit of SELF. The whole world revolved around me. Then I became hungry and thristy for the things of God, I became very uncomfortable with my sin , I studied the scriptures and the Holy Spirit convicted me of my most miserable hell deserving condition. The reason why I lived in such a way is because I was a sinner. Then by God's Grace, He taught me that Jesus was and is THE WAY THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE. My husband and I have 5 boys. I remember vividly an argument we had one evening about spanking, our first son was about 8 months at the time and my husband wanted to talk with me about how we would discipline. I was just staring to learn of God from my Bible and I said, "No I will never spank my children."( I was not aware of submission yet either). My husband, patiently tried to reason with me about how he wanted to discipline. Then I read in my Bible, many of the verses which Glenda shared. I began to understand that we are all sinners, even small children. When a parent properly administers a spanking in love for correction it shows that our sins will reap consequences. God is holy and He cannot look upon sin. We must teach our children "in love" that we all deserve nothing but hell. God in His Mercy has chosen a people for Himself and when He saves us, we will have a desire to be obedient to His Commandments as we learn them from the Bible.  A parent should not be easily angered, nor display outbursts of wrath. It should be with the intention to teach. The infliction of pain by itself will possibly produce a rebellious individual(that is one who is already rebellious). All that a Christian does, needs to be for the Glory of God. As a mother, I love my children with an eternal love. I want them to be saved and not to perish. I discipline when they are disobedient. I also praise when they are obedient. I do not love them less or more depending on their behavior, but I do correct them differently. The bible teaches that Foolishness is bound to the heart of a child. I know this and see it. If I truly love my children I will discipline them for their soul's sake, not their bottoms sake, or their feelings sake. I guess my 2 cents turned into more like 10...smile. Time to go. Take Care.
In His Mercy,
Jen

Carol

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Re: Should We Spank Our Children
« Reply #8 on: August 23, 2003, 01:19:57 PM »
I agree we should spank children when they need it.  Back in the days when children received spankings regularly, they were much more well behaved, respected their elders, and were much more pleasant to be around.   The high self-esteem movement of today has so changed our way of parenting.  Parents feel guilty if they even discipline their children anymore.  Parents worry that they might damage their self esteem.  We are told by mental health professionals to pay a lot of attention to our children.  The more attention we pay, the more we love them, and the better parents we are.  We are to praise them constantly, and protect them from frustration and failure.  I believe children have become addicted to praise and attention.  Our families are child-centered, instead of marriage-centered.  --When I was a child, we were told that children are to be seen and not heard.   My mother put me outside in the morning and told me to stay out and play all day.  She didn’t worry about keeping me entertained, about making sure I felt loved and happy all the time.  When I disobeyed, I had to go get a switch from a tree and bring it to her to use on me.   LOL. Talk about an humbling experience!   Of course, I didn’t like it at the time, but am so thankful today that I had a mother that loved me enough to discipline me and teach me humility, that the world didn’t revolve around me.   Love is not just a warm gushy feeling, it is doing what is best for a child, even if it hurts sometimes.  

My thoughts,
Carol
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Doug Johnson

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Re: Should We Spank Our Children
« Reply #9 on: August 24, 2003, 03:12:57 PM »
I once believed in spankings. I keep hearing reformed christians say that "it's better to spank children than to let them run wild." But I don't think I believe that. Children remember their father's angry yelling and whacks on the butt and it takes years for them to understand how they got to be such timid and withdrawn adults. I'm sure parents did the best they knew how in old days but it's a new day now.

People who got spanked as children and just happened to appear to be normal do so in spite of those insults and violence, not because of it. How is violence a good example to set for children. I share the concerns of all those who wish to discuss parenting methods apart from spankings, and the surrounding social issues that result from that.

I gave up spankings because spankings interfered with my relationships with my children. I didn't want my children afraid of me, I wanted them to feel comfortable with telling me exactly how they felt, even if they expressed it angrily or even with curse words. It's the only way to communicate with them peacefully, solve the problems, and really get to the bottom of their rebellion.

You Christians act as though you don't make mistakes yourself. Parents make mistakes every day. I learned to apologize to my kids and accept their criticisms.

 I don't think that you all know this, but you could be arrested and charged with a crime for hitting your children. If you need help, there are many family services that keep a library of books on non-violent parenting. And many states have agencies that offer help and even workshops and support for parents who once spanked. You people have to get over your need for "the good ole days" and come into the 21st century. Because spanking is nothing more than a lack of self control. We need to be better parents and we won't have to spank, and will be able to raise our children free of violence and hurtful coercion.

Children deserve more than to be hit on by people twice their size, and who should know better.

jd@

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Re: Should We Spank Our Children
« Reply #10 on: August 25, 2003, 12:30:53 AM »
No one is advocating "angry yelling" Doug.  We have to be careful to distinguish between the use and the abuse of spanking.  If it is done in a godly way, then yes - it does profit the child.

Quote
I don't think that you all know this, but you could be arrested and charged with a crime for hitting your children.

It's interesting that you say that.  Where I live the Government is considering legislation that will ban all smacking.  I believe this is religious discrimination because at least some Christians believe that the Bible commands (not just allows) smacking.




judykanova

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Re: Should We Spank Our Children
« Reply #11 on: August 25, 2003, 03:07:30 AM »
Quote
Children remember their father's angry yelling and whacks on the butt and it takes years for them to understand how they got to be such timid and withdrawn adults. I'm sure parents did the best they knew how in old days but it's a new day now.

Doug,  I think it's important to distinguish between the issue of parenting in general, from the issue of spanking.  The relationship a parent establishes with their child, if a strong and loving one, is not going to crumble as a result of spanking.

Quote
People who got spanked as children and just happened to appear to be normal do so in spite of those insults and violence, not because of it. How is violence a good example to set for children.

You presume that it’s “in spite of” when the evidence suggests otherwise.  Also, "insults" can occur without anyone touching another, and is not the same thing as discipline.  'Violence' implies abuse, which is not condoned by anyone here, that I know of.

Quote
I gave up spankings because spankings interfered with my relationships with my children. I didn't want my children afraid of me, I wanted them to feel comfortable with telling me exactly how they felt, even if they expressed it angrily or even with curse words. It's the only way to communicate with them peacefully, solve the problems, and really get to the bottom of their rebellion.

No one is suggesting that other forms of discipline cannot be used, as much depends upon the child and the circumstances.   However, this seeming need of some parents to be their child's 'friend', and this fear that their child won't 'like' them, sets the stage for disrespectful and disobedient behavior.  Disobedience towards parents is no small matter, and makes the teaching of obedience to God that much more difficult.

I suspect that your relationship with your children did not suffer because you spanked them (assuming that’s all it was).   What child enjoys any kind of discipline?  And what child can’t quickly pick up on and take advantage of insecurity, hesitancy or inconsistency on the part of the parent?  One thing about a spanking -- it’s over quickly, brings home the point, and ‘clears the air’. :)   As opposed to prolonged tensions and built-up resentments, and escalating rebellion to see just how far they can stretch the limits, which arise from taking too little or no action at all.

Don’t misunderstand me when I say this, but children should fear the consequences of rebellious behavior.  Fear has it’s proper place. Some people even try to deny the fear of God, which is the beginning of wisdom (Ps 111:10).

Deut 6:5-7, 12-13

5 And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.
6 And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart:
7 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.
12 Then beware lest thou forget the LORD, which brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.
13 Thou shalt fear the LORD thy God, and serve him, and shalt swear by his name.

Ps 34:9-11

9 O fear the LORD, ye his saints: for there is no want to them that fear him.
10 The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the LORD shall not want any good thing.
11 Come, ye children, hearken unto me: I will teach you the fear of the LORD.



Quote
You Christians act as though you don't make mistakes yourself. Parents make mistakes every day. I learned to apologize to my kids and accept their criticisms.

I doubt any parent can honestly say that parenting is easy, or that they never made mistakes.  Saying I’m sorry is something that’s very important to model for our children.  As for criticism, I would rather use a different word; children should feel free to come to their parents with any concern, but it had better be expressed with an attitude of respect.  There are too many children today who disrespect authority and are allowed to control the household, rather than the other way around.

Eph 6:1-4

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

Col 3:20-21

20 Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord.
21 Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged.



Quote
I don't think that you all know this, but you could be arrested and charged with a crime for hitting your children. …. Because spanking is nothing more than a lack of self control. We need to be better parents and we won't have to spank, and will be able to raise our children free of violence and hurtful coercion…. Children deserve more than to be hit on by people twice their size, and who should know better.

Those laws you're speaking of are aimed at child abuse, not appropriate discipline which includes spanking.  (Though I admit some would like to make it otherwise).  No punishment should be administered unjustly,  nor with the intent to do harm, but rather with the intent to teach.  Since self-control is one of the lessons that children need to learn; an out-of-control parent should not lay a hand on their child.  Any parent who truly abuses their child deserves to be held accountable, and will ultimately have to answer to God.  The Bible makes this clear:

Matt 18:6

But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.


Heb 13:17

17 Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.



Quote
If you need help, there are many family services that keep a library of books on non-violent parenting. And many states have agencies that offer help and even workshops and support for parents who once spanked. You people have to get over your need for "the good ole days" and come into the 21st century.

Godly parents should recognize that our children belong to the Lord, and our ultimate desire is for their salvation.  A careful study of biblical principles of child rearing, which goes well beyond the topic of spankings, should guide us.  There are some good books by authors who recognize the authority of Scriptures.  It’s these permissive ‘2lst century’ books, who wrongly view all corporal punishment as ‘violent’ and abusive, while promoting a ‘ME’ generation of self-centered  people with under-developed consciences, no Christain values, and no fear of the Lord.  That’s what these ‘21st’ century books promote by and large.

When you consider what the Bible teaches as a whole about parenting, it’s not so much the issue of physical punishment per say.  The real issue is that of obedience,  which begins with obedience to parents.  Obedience to God is of utmost importance and a characteristic of a true believer in that they have an ongoing desire to be obedient.  This is no small matter when you consider these passages in the OT, which this side of the cross should not be taken literally because Jesus came to fulfill the law, but nonetheless show how serious this matter of obedience is to the Lord:

Prov 30:17

The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.

Deut 21:18-23

18 If a man have a stubborn and rebellious son, which will not obey the voice of his father, or the voice of his mother, and that, when they have chastened him, will not hearken unto them:
[19
Then shall his father and his mother lay hold on him, and bring him out unto the elders of his city, and unto the gate of his place;
20 And they shall say unto the elders of his city, This our son is stubborn and rebellious, he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton, and a drunkard.
21 And all the men of his city shall stone him with stones, that he die: so shalt thou put evil away from among you; and all Israel shall hear, and fear.


This brings to mind the incident in the OT (Num 15:32-36) where a man gathers a few sticks on the Sabbath – the day of rest.  For this seemingly minor infraction, God demanded he be stoned to death, because of the importance that we recognize our salvation rests wholly with Christ – the author and finisher of faith, towards which we can contribute nothing.  So the above account about the stoning of a disobedient son suggests that obedience and salvation go hand-in-hand – (a passage I will take great delight in showing my young adult son at the earliest opportunity   :)).

May God give you the patience and wisdom to raise godly children.

judy
'For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven.'   Ps 119:89

Carol

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Re: Should We Spank Our Children
« Reply #12 on: August 25, 2003, 08:32:22 AM »
Very well said, Judy!

Carol
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But gives me neither feet nor hands.
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Anne

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Re: Should We Spank Our Children
« Reply #13 on: August 26, 2003, 05:46:44 PM »
Dana,
 I think this article may be helpful for you to read concerning this issue.

It's Not P.C. But Spanking Works

Source: Boston Herald
Published: October 20, 2000 Author: Betsy Hart

On the way back from a recent trip to visit family in Chicago, I found myself on a plan handling my three young children by myself. The 6- and 4-year-olds behaved well, which meant I could concentrate on minimizing any annoyance the 17-month-old might cause. So, I spent the entire time focused like a laser beam on pacifying her and keeping her from fussing. I was largely successful - and exhaused.

It later occurred to me that on that relatively short flight I got a little taste of what it's like to be a fairly typical parent these days - meaning one who is always intimidated by her children and their outbursts, and will do anything to avoid a tantrum.

I see it constantly, in settings both public and private. Sure, maybe sometimes it's just another mom trying to keep the peace with her young toddler out of consideration for others. But when I regularly watch 3-, 4-, 5- and 6-year-olds completely intimidating their parents, throwing fits, calling the shots, I cringe. These are parents who don't have much confidence in their necessary position of authority in their children's lives.

And I can pretty much guarantee they are not parents who judiciously spank their children. It's not politically correct, it's certainly not something today's "experts" approve of, but appropriate physical discipline at the appropriate ages trains a child to understand that words like "no" have meaning, and that the parent is in a position of loving authority in the child's life. One doesn't have to be a psychologist to know that feelings often follow actions. Properly and lovingly using spanking to train a child a child to outwardly respect authority and the rights of others or to control his temper will in time inform his heart on those matters.

Besides, if I told my kids I loved them but never touched them, would they believe it? So too, if I tell them "no" but never physically back up the word, can it have much meaning? Too often, I see parents who refuse to spank resort instead to bribing, begging, screaming, empty threats, or ineffectively rendered "time-outs." Noe of that happens in our house. A line is crossed, a controlled spanking is rendered, there are hugs all around and we move on. In fact this consistency means my kids get the message fast - and spankings quickly become relatively infrequent for each child.

The "experts" of course suggest that a controlled spanking teaches "violence." What nonsense. To use a very loose analogy, that's like saying that allowing police officers to use judicious physical force teaches criminals to be violent. Wade Horn is a noted child psychologist and head of the National Fatherhood Initiative, an organization which encourages responsible parenting. He believes that a number of different discipline methods including appropriately administered 'Time-outs," which he prefers, are effective. But Horn says there is no evidence that judicious spanking causes children to "act-out" more aggressively as some psychologists maintain the studies show.

Instead, such studies just as likely evidence the obvious - that children who are naturally prone to "act-out" more aggressively simply get more spankings.

But his biggest concern, he says, is that if we remove spanking as an option parents can use to intervene early before bad behavior escalates, that might increase the risk of child abuse if parents then find themselves pushed to the point they strike out in anger.

Today's children, thanks to the "experts," have to be the least spanked in our history. Yet our current generation of young people may be the most violent, depressed and "angry" we've ever seen. They are certainly the most medicated. Not only are more than four million young people on Ritalin to control staggering levels of Attention Deficit Disorder, some 2.5 million are on anti-depressants. And since 1990 the number of preschoolers - yes, preschoolers - prescribed such drugs has risen dramatically.

Spanking is hardly a panacea for too many young people spinning dangerously out of control. But it does seem to me the fear of using appropriate physical discipline with one's children is a sympton of a larger problem: an epidemic of parents afraid to stake out their rightful position of authority and responsibility in their children's lives, for the training, well-being and protection of their kids. Betsy Hart is a commentator for national news stations.

Dan

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Re: Should We Spank Our Children
« Reply #14 on: August 27, 2003, 03:06:32 AM »
Anne

To my mind, hitting anyone remains battery, and battery is abuse. Special interest groups is the only reason why in some places it is still looked upon as OK to hit children. Spanking is shaped by the person administering it, their frustration, rage, ego, pride, issues or momentary need for instant compliance.

Do you know that to perpetuate biblical as well as legal foundation for the use of what you call "reasonable disciplinary" action by christian parents against their kids will ultimately give new licence to child abusers in the name of the bible. Saying it's o\k to beat children, even with the hand will confuse well-intentioned parents and place them in the compromising position of being legally charged. This has already happened in some states.  You can't just hit your children anymore. Not without being reported to authorities.

Why can't we just say that spanking is wrong because it teaches the wrong lessons? And if spanking works, please tell me why there are so many troubled children in our world?


 


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