Wise Saying #12:
“Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you strike him with a rod, he will not die. If you strike him with the rod, you will save his soul from Sheol.” (23:13-14 ESV)
Corporal punishment for children is a law from heaven. It is not an option, suggestion, or theory. The instruction from God through the Wiseman is to use this form of caring correction with children. It must be administered in the formative years (ref. 19:18), with a view to training them for wise living, not harming them[i] (ref. 22:15; 29:15). Furthermore, corporally punishing your children is a mark of your love for them (ref. 13:24; 3:11-12; Hebrews 12:3-11). Severe discipline is not cruel, but to withhold it from a callous youth is (cf. 29:15). Older generations understood this proverb well and applied it liberally. Sadly, however, a good ol’ hard spanking or switchin’ across a child’s backside has quickly become a thing of the past. Tragically, we are reaping the dreadful consequences of moral degeneration of society; spearheaded by generations of belligerent, narcissistic and proud adults who knew no discipline. Every parent must choose, will you submit to God’s wise words as the final authority on child rearing and save your children, or will you capitulate and sacrifice their souls on the altar of modern psychology? The choice is yours, choose wisely (cf. 29:17).
This week’s theme: The Thirty Sayings of the Wiseman
[i] Parents you brutalize their children cannot hide behind the rod doctrine of Proverbs. Ephesians 6:4 speaks to this saying, “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” To harm your children in any way not only contradicts the Holy word but will also bring the Father’s wrath upon you.