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spare the rod, spoil the child? - Page 3

post #41 of 65
Casey, there is not a place to offer an opinion on using anything other than gentle discipline. No one was directly flaming you, they are flaming the Pearls and rightfully so. I read your post that was deleted as it can in my inbox, and as a new member who did not take the time to see what the purpose of this forum is about (one that many people put a lot of time and energy into) it was hurtful to myself and to others. You can definitely have an opinion. Unfortunately this is not the place to promote that one. Many other forums here value opinions and they are a main part of the forum.

Many here are familiar with Ezzo, the Pearls and others already. The main purpose of this forum is to help people use and understand gentle, positive discipline, and people feel infringed upon when you suggest they do something they vehemently are against. Maybe not even in theory, but in practice as well. Some people have never tried it, some people have. It varies. The main point is that we are all here to learn a gentle, positive approach. You suggested a book. Well, I read it, and I was horrified. I was chilled to the very core, and I am ashamed it is promoted in the name of Christianity.

A great avenue to consider if you are interested in learning why I and others do not spank or hit and use GD, is grace based parenting. It is a GD based parenting rooted in Christian principles. Also, a book called Biblical Parenting is a great read.

Quote:
Based on biblical teachings, GBD is a nurturing, God-centered approach to parenting your child from birth to adulthood.

This carefully researched method of parenting has received results for families and children of all ages, backgrounds, and family structures. Taking the stand that parenting is a covenant and not a burden, GBD insists on the formation of loving bonds of trust and mutual respect that begin at birth and will carry on throughout a lifetime. These bonds help the child to foster good relationships with parents and peers with the added benefit of establishing a sense of self-worth that will be essential to a successful life.
More links
http://www.thesockgirl.com/?page_id=162
http://www.parentingbookmark.com/pages/CM04.htm

As canayiank said, there are a vast number of forums here besides Gentle Discipline, many of which may be informative and useful to you. Hopefully you will find this a gentle place to be on the whole and a wonderful resource for you.
post #42 of 65
I'm new here & haven't gotten through this entire thread, but was wondering what you all thought of the verses

Prov 22:15 - "Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline will drive it far from him"

and

Prov 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 a rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell."

Faith (married to Phil, Mom to Caitlin (3) & Marianne (1) - due in Jan w/ #3)
post #43 of 65
Are you honestly asking, like you don't have an opinion? I'm sort of wary of a new poster just popping into a thread like this with that question.

This isn't a debate forum, it's a support board for gentle discipline. So obviously, as a Christian who practices GD I don't believe those verses say to punish your child. I don't think we look only to the "rod" verses for insight into our responsibility as a parent, though. But the meaning I take away from those verses is that it is important to teach, correct, and guide your children... but not to literally beat them. The whole "save their soul from hell" clause is a big clue that it is not appropriate to interpret it literally. No one is saved by being beaten, certainly not the smallest among us.
post #44 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by BetsyPage
I don't think we look only to the "rod" verses for insight into our responsibility as a parent, though. But the meaning I take away from those verses is that it is important to teach, correct, and guide your children... but not to literally beat them.
BetsyPage, I agree wholeheartedly.

A PP said her words were her rod. I take that to mean the same--to teach, to correct and to guide my child. To be there for him.

This issue has been discussed many times (though not in the GD forum since it is not the place), and the verses have been discussed. I linked to some previous threads if you see my first post in this thread if you are interested in reading more. It is one of those issues that I just find hard to consider the other side.

Forgive me for quoting myself because I am not sure if you saw my post, pfblackwood.

Quote:
Originally Posted by meco
A great avenue to consider if you are interested in learning why I and others do not spank or hit and use GD, is grace based parenting. It is a GD based parenting rooted in Christian principles. Also, a book called Biblical Parenting is a great read.

Quote:
Based on biblical teachings, GBD is a nurturing, God-centered approach to parenting your child from birth to adulthood.

This carefully researched method of parenting has received results for families and children of all ages, backgrounds, and family structures. Taking the stand that parenting is a covenant and not a burden, GBD insists on the formation of loving bonds of trust and mutual respect that begin at birth and will carry on throughout a lifetime. These bonds help the child to foster good relationships with parents and peers with the added benefit of establishing a sense of self-worth that will be essential to a successful life.

More links
http://www.thesockgirl.com/?page_id=162
http://www.parentingbookmark.com/pages/CM04.htm
post #45 of 65
I didn't mean to start a debate..just looking for your interpretations of those since the "rod" in other verses was shown as a rod of leadership/shepherding. I am new to the whole GD thing - not really sure of it I guess...just interested in your thoughts. Didn't mean to jump in as a newby & post something inappropriate, honestly just wanted your take.

Thanks for answering.

Faith
post #46 of 65
Quote:
I don't think we look only to the "rod" verses for insight into our responsibility as a parent, though. But the meaning I take away from those verses is that it is important to teach, correct, and guide your children... but not to literally beat them. The whole "save their soul from hell" clause is a big clue that it is not appropriate to interpret it literally. No one is saved by being beaten, certainly not the smallest among us.


Not to mention, a true Rod (like ones used in Biblical times) were big, well, rods! Like a scepter. If you literally beat your child with one they very well could die and then that verse wouldn't make any sense at all!

FWIW, in the notes of my study Bible it said that they believe the word rod to mean authority. I was pretty happy to hear that.

Oh, one more thing: It's never a good idea to take a verse or even a handful of verses and build your whole parenting philosophy or whatever around them. I think we always have to use those verses in context not only in regards to the surrounding verses, but the Bible as a whole. Particularly when you are dealing with Old Testament verses such as the rod verses. You have to weigh them against the whole of the Bible - especially Jesus' teachings.

Of course, this is just my understanding as a Christian. I don't know that everyone who reads the Bible or parts of the Bible would agree.

Anyway, not trying to start a debate, but just thought I'd give the op some more to chew on from my perspective since it seems I'm the same religion as her parents, ya know?
post #47 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by sparkprincess


Not to mention, a true Rod (like ones used in Biblical times) were big, well, rods! Like a scepter. If you literally beat your child with one they very well could die and then that verse wouldn't make any sense at all!
Exactly. There is a picture of a rod (shebet) on gentlechristianmothers.com and it is taller than me. There is no way you could actually beat a small child with this thing.
The "rod" is a symbol of authority. We are called to be the authority in our children's lives, to discipline them-(disciple them, meaning to teach). There are many points in the bible that are speaking not literally, but symbolically.

Also, I don't know if this was said before, but the "Spare the rod, spoil the child" saying is not an actual quote from the bible.

These are some of my favorite GBD (Grace based discipline) quotes:

"For you will nurse and be satisfied at her comforing breast, you will drink deeply and delight in her overflowing abundance. For this is what the Lord says: I will extend peace to her like a river and the wealth of nations like a flooding stream; you will nurse and be carried on her arm and dandled on her knees. As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you." Isaiah 66:11

"For though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your ROD and your staff, they comfort me"
Psalm 23:4
----From that verse it is clear to me that a rod is used as a leader/authority role to comfort, not to beat with--- the same lines of thought as the shepard who does not beat his sheep with the rod, but uses it to protect them.

"There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love."
1 John 4:18

As for CIO: Jesus says to his disciples in John 14:18:
"I will not leave you comfortless, I will come to you."

On a side note, I wanted to say that if you are afraid that your father may hurt your child, do not leave your child in his care alone. You know your father best, and if he has an explosive temper, then long periods of time alone with your dc is probably not a good idea.
post #48 of 65
Hi Faith! Welcome.

I once emailed my cousin, who has a PhD in OT Languages, about the "rod" or shebet verses. He replied that it could mean about 12 different things, from a literal stick to branch of Jesse (i.e., a lineage thing) and that it was difficult to translate a lot of things "looking back"...IOW, if we want it to be a literal rod b/c our worldview supports spanking, then that's how we'll read it.

I understand it to mean "discipline"...we, as parents, must discipline our children. How we do that is where the obvious differences lie. I do not think it says "spank" or "switch" - for if one is truly interpreting it literally then you need to take an inch-thick stick and beat your child with it. (And, as a pp mentioned, that COULD cause your child to die, which the verse says "it" won't).

There is nothing that says, "Take a wooden spoon on bare buttocks and hug afterwards" a la Dobson. Or, "Cut a willow switch of 1/8th inch and whip your baby with it" a la Pearl (please see my previous posts before I think I'm accusing you personally of these). These are still *interpretations* of the verses, not literal applications.

My point is this: We are instructed to discipline our children. The techniques will vary. And as much as I'd love to say the Bible is anti-spanking, I don't see that either. But we are NOT Biblically mandated to spank/physically punish, as many people think - but we are to discipline, i.e., TEACH, our children.

I teach mine w/o punishment.

I remember the first time I read about non-punitive parenting 4 yrs. ago...I didn't think it was possible. Or even desireable. I remember being, like you, being skeptical of the whole GD thing, too! But amazingly enough, my dh and I have become passionate supporters of Grace-Based Discipline. See www.aolff.org and www.gentlechristianmothers.com for more info.
post #49 of 65
I actually found this thread accidently, but found it very interesting. I had never heard of the "Pearl" theory, so in the spirit of expanding my knowledge I looked on the aformentioned site. How very sad, I had to stop reading during the instructions for training up your infant so the adult would not be in servitude. That this practice is actually considered, saddens me. Associating "No" with pain of any degree is unbelievable. The thought that this is actually applied to children upsets me. This is ends justify the means thinking. I know I should probably read the whole thing before I post such a strong thought (so I am not talking out of my a**)but I don't want to subject myself to this coldness. I have enjoyed and learned so much from MDC but this (Pearl) is the pits! I'm so glad there is MDC and us out there. I'm done, being too dramatic I know, just shocked.
post #50 of 65
MMM - I debated whether to include that link, as it is graphic. But I had the same visceral reaction as you did the first time I read it, and I think people need to understand just exactly what he stands for.

I will go back, however, and add a disclaimer for poor unsuspecting folks...
post #51 of 65
Thank you for this thread. I am a relatively new Christian and have had these same opinions of the "Spare the Rod" verses for a while. Its nice to have people verbalise what I struggle to say.

I usually just stick to what Jesus said - "do unto others a you would have them do to you" Luke 6:31
post #52 of 65
I believe that if your perception and opinions are already formed, or if you have entered a situation with your (concious or unconcious) mind already slanted towards a particular belief system, one can interpret anything to suit their already formed desire. (such as "Christians" who bomb abortion clinics and feel justified by biblical scripture)

In other words, two people can read and interpret the Bible vastly different depending on where they are in their lives when they begin. That goes with almost every other text known to man, whether religious or not. Some people feel that Romeo and Juliet is the ultimate story of true love at all costs and is the most romantic sentiment they have ever read. Others may see it as a tragic tale of two hormone crazed teenagers hell bent on defying their parents and who made a decision to take it all the way to death. Some people see both.

The way I gauge my own parenting is how I feel in my heart, soul, spirit and mind when I am interacting with my child. Equally important is how my child feels in all those ways and how she feels our relationship is -- if one or both of those are *off*, something isn't being done right (imo). Now, no one is perfect so you may not feel that way 100% of the time in every single situation, but it is a very accurate gauge to me.

No one need look to a book for an *excuse* to not hit their child. Worse, no one should be looking for any book as an excuse TO hit their child.

I sound judgemental because it is a judgement I feel comfortable in making that hitting is a form of violence. There is no way to sugar coat it or make it sound pretty. The act of intentionally hurting someone else, physically, even if you "don't leave a mark" or whatever parents say to justify hitting their children, is a violent act. I always shake my head when I read about "hitting with love" (Pearls and such) ... yeah, I could see my husband smacking me one in the face out of love...

I don't intend to offend anyone here who has come from a punitive background, or has made mistakes in their own parenting. Obviously if you are a returning member, you have realized or are in the act of realizing that hitting a child is not the form of "discipline" you would like to embrace, so no offense intended. The past can't be changed, but I commend anyone who is looking to change the future of their relationship with their child.
post #53 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by pfblackwood

Prov 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 a rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell."

i've always considered verses like this to be hyperbole. the author was exaggerating to make a point. it's the same thing as me saying i'd rather slit my wrists than be a bus driver. (no offense to bus drivers, i just think it has to be the worst, most unthankful job there is).
post #54 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by pfblackwood
Prov 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 a rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell."

Faith (married to Phil, Mom to Caitlin (3) & Marianne (1) - due in Jan w/ #3)
My Bible says "Withhold not chastisement from a boy..."

In fact a lot of these rod verses are translated with the word "chastisement." I always thought of chastisement as a verbal rebuke, not physical punishment. And it's only directed at boys anyway, like a pp said, written from father to son. (I'm Catholic so I don't read KJV, that's why I have a different translation.)
post #55 of 65
I am jumping in... I was raised in a Christian home, and spanking/discipline/rod were all part of our life... even expected. It is just the way things were.....everyone at church (and I do mean EVERYone spanked, and you were remiss in your duties if you didnt) thought that the rod verses referred to beating children.

The pastor of the church bragged about how badly he beat his children...from the pulpit. I;ll spare you the details and not make you barf....

Now I am parenting my own dd, who is 2, and my ds, who is 5 mos.

And I honestly have no clue how to go about things..sometimes i feel bereft, and i start falling prey to the whole "she's manipulating me!!" "Ineed to make her obey!!" feelings.....

My brain tells me that she should obey me, respect me, and I want those things for us.

But how can I cause those things to happen if there are no consequences for her actions???

I have read all the "child training " books that were mentioned earlier, and in writing, it looks alot like what I grew up with. But in practice....welll, that's another story. I couldn't hit my five month old baby!! Especially, especially not with a stick that i bought jsut for that purpose!!!!!

I have a hard time letting go of my tendencies to want obedience all the time, and i try to remind myself that she is just two, but I seriously dont want my dd acting out of control and not listening, either!!
post #56 of 65
I get those feelings too, that my dd must obey me, and I start to feel controlling and angry. I try to be loving and patient and remember that she is still little. BUT, I do think that its important that she follow my directions. Check out the gentle discipline board on gentlechristianmothers.com. That and the book 'biblical discipline' helped me to understand that I am the authority in my child's life, and when i ask her to do something, I expect her to comply. I don't expect 1st time obedience or anything like that, and I don't use punishment/spanking/time outs, but I expect her to follow my directions because I am called to discipline my child as it says in the bible. If she doesn't do what I ask, or says no, I help her to comply gently. i.e. if i need her to pick up her toys, i will ask her to please pick up her toys. If she says no, I will usually reflect her feelings like, "I know it so much fun to play and you don't want to stop to pick it up, but mommy needs you to pick it up so I don't trip on them." If she still doesn't, then I tell her, "Can you pick up your toys by yourself or do you need mommy to help you?" Usually she wants to do things herself, so she will start picking up. If she still doesn't I will say, "Okay, mommy is going to help you pick it up." And I usually scoot her over to where the toys are and "help" her pick up the toys. If she throws a total temper tantrum then I just wrap my arms around her, (if I can) and I whisper in her ear.( Usually reflecting her feelings) until she calms down, then I sit down with her and help her to pick up the toys. It never really gets to that point with us, but it has happened. Either way, what I ask gets done. When I ask her to do something, I expect her to comply, and I help her to succeed and comply if she can't do it herself. I try to be very consistant and help her understand that my words mean something by gently insisting that it gets done, helping her if needed.

Obviously this is a lot of steps and takes a lot of patience, but my dd is not yet 2, and when she is older I wouldn't do as much talking. Lately I have started counting, not like "When I get to 3 you better do it or I'll spank." but it gives her a time limit to transition.
i.e. she loves to play in the bathtub forever. When I need her to get out, it used to be such a cry-fest. Now I say, "dd, its time to get out of the tub." Then, "Lets get out and brush our teeth." She says NO!. then I will try to reflect her feelings, "I know its fun to play, but we need to get out now." I look at her with this raised eyebrow look and I say, "can you get out yourself, or do you need me to help you?" Then I will count. 1....2.....3.... or sometimes I count down or start from 10 depending on what it is. When I get to three, I say, "Okay, time to brush teeth, mama is going to help you get out of the bath now." And I take her out. I have done this so many times that she knows I'm consistant that when I count down, I will make her comply, so by the time I get to 3 she usually climbs out herself because she doesn't want me to help her. This has worked wonders for me from everything to getting in her carseat to not touching something that could hurt her. In that case I would say, "Can you stop yourself or do you need me to help you stop?" And everything is said in a loving and calm voice. I never shout or say things angrily. And things get done when I need them to most of the time.

However, I give dd plenty of room to explore and let her experience "natural consequences" and logical consequences - (all explained in Biblcial parenting.) But when certain things need to happen, I help them happen. But I do take into account her age and understand what is age-approapriate and I try to go at her speed most of the time. But I do believe that I am to disciple to my child and teach her in the ways she should go, as the bible says. For me, its a balance between allowing her freedom to be 2, and not going overboard and being too permissive.
post #57 of 65
All ot laws still aplie in nt mathew 5 17-19
post #58 of 65
Mike -

Are you condoning spanking? If so, this really isn't the place for you.

I don't want to get into a big debate as this really isn't the forum, but from the very verses you just posted :
Quote:
I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.
We've actually already kind of talked about that, maybe you should go back and reread the posts? Also, make sure you are reading the verses you posted in context.

PS. the book of Proverbs is not a law book. Oh, and as many people have mentioned, many of the words use in the rod scriptures can mean different things.
post #59 of 65
Why do people insist on trying to justafy things with books the bible contridicts its self so much that you can read what ever you want out of it. I dont know how people decide what is metaphorical or literal or hyperbole. I think the bible very clearly is prospanking but why do you need a book to tell you what is right you should just be able to logicaly know and feel what is right. you can read the bible if you want but I dont know how you can interpet the blueness of thy wunds shall clencethe the of evil proverbs 20-30 but if you can interpet that any other way than literal tell me.
post #60 of 65
no im just trying to make the point the bible or any book is not were to find out what is right or wrong you should just feel and know what seems right to you. you can read a book to tell you why what you feel is right. but the bible dosnt realy explain the why it just tells you shoulds.
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