Question:

I found your web site while searching for churches for a trip we are taking. I found your question section to be quite impressive--when you do have time to do anything else?

I was, however, surprised at the number of questions that you have posted about spanking. I think your answers and support of it are right on and biblical concerning its use. I don't adhere to your insistence of a switch (although I know its biblical and don't disagree with it). but use a paddle. I teach in Alabama and in our rural school, it is not an issue. Teachers here are allowed to and sometimes do use the paddle. I appreciate your answer to the question "Should teachers spank children?" However, I think it is used quite effectively and not overly used in our schools.

Is the same "rod" a switch that is spoken of in the 23rd Psalm "thy rod and thy staff....? Was that a switch? If you are describing something as big as your little finger, is that not a cane?

Some questions seem quite made up by people --such as "Should I spank my son for breaking a window?" or "Is it still right for my dad to spank me at nineteen?" Although if an honest question, I guess I appreciate a person trying to determine the best reaction. (How do you determine what question is just staged?)

Our children are now mid and late teenagers. We used a small toy ball paddle when they were younger and then made a paddle when they were in late elementary school. However, we have not needed to use it in quite some time although our son was given three licks at school this past year for tardies. The teacher's policy is three tardies and three licks on the third tardy. I do think that she changed his behavior. It's nice to teach at the school where your child attend.

I also agree that as you replied in one question, "What was once common knowledge in society has been lost...parents, unable to control their children, asking 'how do I spank a child?'" I guess they didn't learn "how to" from it being done to them as children. I just thought it was common sense and knowledge I think your suggestion of ten swats would be too much with paddle. Not sure I agree with your premise that it should leave no mark or bruise.

I've always considered the goal to be behavior change.I found that calmly talking about what has happened and what was going to be the punishment and having the children discuss that they knew that there needed to be punishment and how much, always seemed to have more positive outcome than just a quick spanking and having it over with.

Just reading the questions that you have received I guess I just think that there are a lot of bogus questions about the mechanics of it (how to how many) and not a lot of questions concerning changing behavior and attitude. I just thought the question of "Should a seven year olds pants be taken down for spanking?" to be silly and probably misdirected to your site and not a porn site.

Keep up the work


Answer:

Thank you for your kind words. In regards to how it gets done, I try to answer a few questions each day. What you see is the accumulation of several years work. I enjoy it as the variety of questions I receive and attempt to answer keeps me sharp and searching my Bible for answers.

I do agree that a number of the questions that I receive, especially those revolving around spanking, are fake. When I started answer questions, one of my objectives was to answer all the questions that I could, knowing that if one person asked there would bound to be thousands of others asking similar questions. I have since modified my goal, being a victim of success I receive too many questions and some of them are trash or someone wanting a platform to espouse false doctrine.

In regards to the spanking questions, I will post a note that I'm certain is fake if an issue is raised that hasn't been addressed before. Usually I will edit the note and remove things not pertinent to the issue I want to address -- especially things that involve the mechanics of spanking. Even your own note was edited in this fashion.

In Psalm 23:4, the Hebrew word for "your rod" is shebet, and the word for "your staff" is mish'enah. The word shebet refers to a small branch or a scion off of a tree. It is the same as the rod found in Proverbs regarding the punishment of a child. The word mish'enah refers to a walking stick or a shepherd's staff. Both were used by a shepherd to keep his sheep in order. The Israelites did not use dogs to herd sheep, so a rod delivered a small sting when a sheep insisted on going his own way. After all, if one sheep decides to stray it isn't long before others start to follow him. The staff was used to guide a sheep by giving a push or pull in the right direction. The staff could also be used as a weapon to fend off an animal attacking the sheep.

In regards to the ten swats, you must consider the context. The question was regarding punishing a teenage boy. I agree that it would be too much if a paddle was used, but since the Bible doesn't mention using a paddle, I stay within the bounds of what God did say (I Peter 4:11).