Sunday, June 6, 2021

Child Discipline

 Prov. 19:18

Discipline Definition (n.)  Discipline = the practice of training people to obey rules or a code of behavior using punishment to correct disobedience.

On one hand, not all discipline includes punishment   (example:  self discipline, Christian disciplines (Bible Study, prayer, fasting, etc.

However, discipline nearly always includes that which is uncomfortable, unpleasant, difficult ... something we have to work at; goes contrary to natural inclinations.

So... Child Discipline = training a child to obey, do right, etc. using methods the child considers unpleasant (spanking, grounding, time out, privileges withheld, go to room, go to bed, no dessert, no TV, no games, no phone....

There si SOLID Theological Basis for Child discipline in the Bible.

I.  God disciplines His children
Heb. 12:4-12
Rev. 3:19
Deut. 8:5
Psm. 94:12

II.  We are called to be Godly ... ie to be like Him; to practice Godly behavior.

Therefore, Proper child discipline = Godly behavior
Failure to do so = ungodly behavior - Eph. 5:1

I)  Words to Parents (from Proverbs) - (short, condensed bits of wisdom)

Prov. 22:6, 15 - not intended to be absolute.  Child has own free will

Children = inexperienced therefore do childish things
Options = teach them OR leave to their own devices
     Prov. 29:15, 13:24, 29:17, 23:13-14 - all these are conditional, there can be exceptions

The Purpose of discipline = Formation, Character development - for the sake of the child.  Not for emotional personal catharsis.

As Christians, should discipline:

    (1)  according to God's Word - His direction, examples which includes forgiveness, love, consistency, etc.

(2)  according to the child's needs - temperament, etc.

(3)  for the proper reason - ie to teach, correct, form.   Contrast: childish behavior with rebellious spirit.

(4)  in the proper spirit
 Not because your are angry, annoyed, embarrassed.

Discipline should include
(5) explanation - why being punished

(6)  affirmation - express love before and after

NOTE:  (1)  uNo guarantee of the outcome - children have their own free wills

            (2)  consistent discipline a likely result = feelings of guilt

IF proper child discipline - difficult
Then follows ... parent must be self-disciplined!
(in other words ... discipline the child but not self!?

II)  Words to the Child - wisdom is not only for old people!!!
     Prov. 13:1, 15:32, 15:5, Ex. 20:12

III)  Words to Both - (parent AND child)
     Prov. 6:23, 12:1, Heb. 12:11

Parents:  You won't be perfect disciplinarian!  (Rom. 3:23)
When you fail ... own up, get up, go again
May be need of apology:  (a)  to grown children  (b)  to kids .. for improper discipline

Kids:  You won't always respond well to (proper) discipline- Rom. 3:23
When you fail, own up, get up, go again.  May be a need for apology ... to parents!!

Closing:  Psm. 127:3-5

1 comment:

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