May 16, 2021

Discipline yields Self-Discipline

Woman Holding a Little Girl

I don’t know exactly the first moment I understood the point of discipline. For years, I had been under it, and that first point of
understanding may have come from a summer music camp at which I was a counselor. During one of the training sessions, we discussed discipline and it’s roll with the teens that were about to be coming on campus. The head counselor spoke about how we discipline so that they, in turn, would discipline themselves.

Now that I have kids of my own, I’m still following that principle. I do spank my children. I was spanked as a child, and I believe it works. I endeavor to spank out of love, and not anger. I try to use it as a training tool, not a venting tool.

Some may argue that my “hitting” and then not allowing my child to hit other children causes a rational problem. My wife asked a similar question a few months back. How do we teach our children it’s ok to throw a ball, but not another toy? Should we ban all throwing?

In my parent’s house, there were only certain few foods that the children were allowed to drink a soft drink. However, my father was allowed to have a soda any time he wished. In my parent’s house, we each had different bed times, and my parents were always the last ones to bed.

In each of these cases, there were different sets of rules for different groups. Same with spanking. Parents are allowed to discipline their children in this way, children are not to hit others.

It’s also illogical to try to compare spanking to assault and battery (normal or sexual) between adults. For one thing, children (at times) need some kind of physical reaction to a wrong accomplished. That’s why you send them to their room, place them in a time out chair, or whatever you do whether or not you spank. However, if you send them to their room, you might also have to include “no computer”. If they’re younger, how do you expect their young minds to associate being sent to their room with something they did wrong– especially if it was something they were not supposed to touch? Furthermore, I find that it just gives them time to get angry.

A simple light slap on the hand can instantly tell a young child not to touch mom’s new vase. It’s immediate. They know what it’s about. Now, that isn’t efficient for older children, but you tailor your discipline for the age level. I don’t ever remember being spanked as a teenager.

Lastly, the Biblical aspect. The Bible has multiple things to say about discipline. It says that God chastens those He loves. It shows that God is the only one that can fit the punishment to the crime. It tells fathers not to provoke their children to wrath. It tells children to obey their parents. It talks about sparing the rod and spoiling the child. An honest search of the Scriptures will yield a great understanding of what God’s thoughts are on how to raise children.

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8 thoughts on “Discipline yields Self-Discipline

  1. Why do people choose to hit their child on the bottom? is it to hide bruises? really spanking has done more harm then good and research proves it. So does the bible:”Spare the rod and spoil the child”, though much quoted, is in fact a misinterpretation of Biblical teaching. While the “rod” is mentioned many times in the Bible, it is only in the Book of Proverbs that this word is used in connection with parenting. The book of Proverbs is attributed to Solomon, an extremely cruel man whose harsh methods of discipline led his own son, Rehoboam, to become a tyrannical and oppressive dictator who only narrowly escaped being stoned to death for his cruelty. In the Bible there is no support for harsh discipline outside of Solomon%u2019s Proverbs. By contrast, the writings in the Gospels, the most important books in the Bible for Christians, contain the teachings of Jesus Christ, who urged mercy, forgiveness, humility, and non-violence. Jesus saw children as being close to God, and urged love, never punishment.

  2. To answer your first question, I do not just spank on the bottom, I slap (though not hard) the hand. I have never left a bruise on a child, and though I was spanked as a child, I was never bruised.

    The mere statement that “research proves it” doesn’t mean any more than you are trying to add weight to your argument. Find and quote the research, then you can discuss it.

    You state that “Spare the rod” is a misinterpretation, but then do not back up the statement. In fact, you prove it is not a misinterpretation since, in the very next sentence, you state that the proverb is correct, though you slander Solomon’s name.

    Solomon, if you know your history, was the one who greatly expanded the nation of Israel. His wisdom was known throughout the land, even to the point that the Egyptian came to visit to see his wisdom. The man had many wives and concubines. The logic that you need to prove that Rehoboam was a product of Solomon’s disciplining methods is strained. First, you’d have to prove that Rehoboam was spanked and that Solomon did not just come up with the wisdom through trial and error. Next, you’d have to presuppose that All of Solomon’s children turned out the same as Rehoboam. Last, you’d have to have something to contrast with– a proof that some leader or future king that was not spanked lived to do things correctly. Since many of the kings of Israel and Judah were evil in the sight of the Lord, you cannot simply say that the evil set was spanked and the good set not.

    Who are you to say what “the most important books in the Bible are for Christians?” Jesus, the “non-violent”, removed the money changers from the temple using his belt for a whip. Jesus, the “non-violent”, is also returning after sending massive judgement on this earth. And let’s not forget that Christianity believes that the three (Jesus, the Father, and the Holy Spirit) are one, and therefore God’s character is just.

  3. Thats why GOd made our butts — so we would have a place to discipline instead of beating somewhere else. LOL There is always someone out there who try to take the bible and fix it to meet their needs. We need to learn to read and study the bible before we open our mouths — we also need to be able to back up what we day with scripture. God bless

  4. Thank you so much for this reply! I am writing my research paper on this subject and I heard these arguments regarding King Solomon and didn’t know exactly how to respond.

    As for what the “research” shows, most of this research is performed by secular psychologists who 1.) lump all sorts of spanking together to say that it is all wrong (i.e. a slap on the bottom and a whelp on the back with a belt several times) 2. assume that children are naturally good and therefore reason and sweet-talk will surely convince them 3. people should not be made to endure any sort of pain and 4. the most precious thing about our kids is their happiness and self-esteem. From a biblical worldview, this is incorrect and if a parent parents God’s way (including spanking with self-control,(for the wrath of man does not bring about the righteousness of God”, building a solid relationshp with one’s child to the point where the child knows that the parent loves and delights in him and making sure to train the child from the beginning to obey consistently, children would turn out a lot better these days.
    Trumbull, Den A. M.D. and S. DuBose Ravenel, M.D. (October 1996) Spare the Rod? New Research Challenges Spanking Critics. Family Policy. 9 (5) Family Research Council. Washington, D.C.

  5. I am always confused by the statement that “research shows that spanking is not good for your children”. Its only been the last 20-30 years that this view point has become common place. Have children become more disciplined in the last 20-30 years, or less? Are the statistics higher, or lower for childhood depression? Have there been more or less reports of extremely violent behavior from children?

    Clearly if spanking was such a horrible thing, wouldn’t you expect a trend of more obedient, happier, less violent children as it becomes more common place NOT to spank? Yet, we don’t see this, why is that?

    1 Corinthians 1:25-28 “Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men. For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: ”

    This leads us back to Proverbs. Is it a suprise that Solomon, one full of God’s wisdom, would write things that confuse our worldly experts?

    Pro 23:12-14 “Apply thine heart unto instruction, and thine ears to the words of knowledge. 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.”

  6. Man! Is there anything left to say!? MIN, Angela and Doug you all hit the nail right on the head. At least you can still get Godly advise about raising kids in some places! Check out for more info if you need more advice!

    (thats No Greater Joy Ministries, but Michael and Debi Pearl)

    Mrs. Meg Logan

  7. Actually, it’s and I second that recommendation.
    I also like Gary and Anne-Marie Ezzo’s

    Both ministries come under attack regularly. Remember when you train/discipline according to ways and means prescribed in help-books, you have to take things into context and use wisdom. I’ve had great success with both, own all the books…etc, etc. and recommend them all the time.

  8. thanks for that correction Mary! I read Ezzo too, even though they have terrible reviews from the “grace based parenting” sect. Don’t ask me what grace based parenting is, I parent with grace and mercy too. LOL

    Mrs. Meg Logan

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