Dare to Discipline

By Stan Mitchell
I remember this conversation: Two parents were discussing their son, who had just been arrested for shop lifting. He was also in possession of drugs. They were at their wits end.
“What can we do with him?” they asked.
A friend looked at them, and said something shocking, and wise: “You can tell him no.”
Worse things can happen to our kids than to be disciplined. One of those worse things is for them to not be disciplined!
“Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him (Proverbs 13:24, ESV).
No one should, under any circumstances, condone child abuse. “Discipline,” is a broad term, and the wise parent will be creative in the methods he uses to direct his children.
Having said that, take a look at society, and consider its decay. Ponder its delinquency, its drug abuse and violence.
Can we as a society afford not to listen to God’s advice on raising children? Can we really be so arrogant that we ignore God’s wisdom on raising children who are whole, respectful and self disciplined?
If we aren’t humble enough to listen to the Lord, then our children will humble us, instead. This sort of hands on parenting is the missing ingredient in the lives of many juvenile delinquents.
You can tell them “no.”

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Stan Mitchell

Stan has preached since 1976, in Zimbabwe, California, Texas and Tennessee. He serves as preacher for the Red Walnut Church of Christ in Bath Springs, TN. He is currently Professor of Bible at Freed-Hardeman University. He is married to the former Marjorie McCarthy, and has one daughter, Tracy Watts. He is the author of four books: The Wise Get Wiser, the Foolish More Foolish: The Book of Proverbs, Give the Winds a Mighty Voice: Our Worship in Song, and Equipping the Saints for Ministry. He has recently published another book, "Will Our Faith Have Children: Developing Leadership in the Church for the Next Generation.

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One thought on “Dare to Discipline

  1. I’m a little confused by what’s been written here. Are you suggesting that all we need to do is “Just say no” rather than adhering to the Scriptures by using the “rod”?

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