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Dear friends,

Welcome to my blog. I am honored to have you visit. I hope you'll find my articles a blessing. I welcome your input and especially comments and questions.

I write as a Christian from Jerusalem, Israel about Biblical subjects.

I am particularly interested in the subjects of children, families, women's issues, corporal punishment, science and nature as these subjects relate to the Holy Scriptures.

For more information, see my website: www.biblechild.com

With every good wish - Samuel Martin

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

"So you think corporal punishment/spanking/smacking is ok because you turned out fine: Think again"

So you think corporal punishment/spanking/smacking is ok because you turned out fine: 

Think again!

Spanking/Smacking/Corporal Punishment is not bad. I am the perfect example of that. Look at me. I turned out just fine so spanking/smacking/corporal punishment is just fine in my book. If I had a dollar for every time I have heard that over the last twenty years!

Make no mistake about it. This idea is one of the most prevalent among those who advocate in favor of corporal punishment of children. A simple Google search will easily confirm this.

I think many of us who have been engaged with this issue can say the same thing. Let's face it. The vast majority of people who were spanked or smacked (particularly in a Christian religious context) definitely believe this. 

The only phrase that you might hear more than this one is "Spare the Rod, Spoil the Child." We all know how engrained this idea is in our culture and how people just believe totally that this is what the Bible teaches.

I have really struggled over this statement, which is the title of this post. I have always been a bit intimidated by it because I never really had a good answer for this statement that I have heard over and over and over again, until now.

I am a good person. I am!

I guess it is normal to think that one is a good person. I remember my dad saying when I was a kid: "Hey, I am one of the nicest guys I know, just ask me and I will tell you!" Now he always said that tongue in cheek, but in fact, with the many flaws my dad had, he still considered himself a patriotic, generally law abiding, hardworking, fairly decent person overall. And he was all of those things!

Now, theologically speaking, my father did not look at himself that way, but for most people, I don't think their deep theological beliefs ever really come into their thinking or their assertions about themselves. They genuinely believe that they are basically good people and that a good spanking or smacking helped them tremendously in directing them to become the "good" person they are today.

Even though life going on around me is not good, I am above that because I was spanked/smacked

Now, I think that most reasonable people looking at the general state of humanity will say that the situation could be improved. In fact, in some cases, we have to admit that humanity is not currently in an ideal state.

"For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.
And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies." (Romans 8:22-23 ESV)

But the interesting thing about those who were spanked/smacked, they see in their experience a type of purifying that took place by them being spanked/smacked: a kind of "trial by fire" and guess what: they have come through the fire better off for the experience.

It is so interesting to see testimonies of people who grew up in these types of environments. These people really had the devil beaten out of them. They often even use this kind of language.

They think that those who received spankings as well as those who administer them to their own kids are better than other people.

Now, this is not a new idea. In fact, the roots of it are as old as history. Note what the prestigious Hastings Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics says in an important article about Flagellants (people who hit themselves because they think it is good for them):

"Voluntary flagellation as a form of penance is as old as history and almost as wide spread as religion itself." (vol. VI, pg. 49)

Flagellants, or people who hit themselves, came to believe that they were more holy than other people.

Note another quote from Hastings who talking about some of the Middle Age Flagellants in Europe said concerning these flagellants:

"they believed that their blood would mingle with the shed blood of their Saviour and that this practice of painful, penitential flagellation, continued for 33 days and a half would wash the soul free from all sin. As these ideas came to clear consciousness in the minds of the Flagellants,. they began to feel that the means of salvation were in their own hands and that the mediation of the Church and its priesthood could be dispensed with." (ibid., pg. 50)

Today, we know these people as "holier than thou" types and make no mistake about it, these type of people are some of the most ardent supporters of corporal punishment/spanking/smacking and its beneficial aspects today.. 

They still believe that the devil can be beaten out of people, and especially children. 

There is only one problem with this. The devil cannot be beaten out of something in which the devil is not inside in the first place. 

But wait a minute! These people say: "I was evil and I deserved it." But were they really evil?

They use very literal interpretations of the book of Proverbs and totally believe in the efficacy of these types of spiritual activities of inflicting violence. The people who undertake these trials are definitely better for their experiences. 

They feed on texts like this:

"The blueness of a wound cleanseth away evil: so do stripes the inward parts of the belly." (Proverbs 20:30 KJV)

But the key question we really have to ask is: Are these people really better off for being spanked/smacked?

The Arrogance of saying "I am better off because I was spanked or smacked."

One of the things that was a realization of mine of late was the utter arrogance of saying that I am better off for being spanked or smacked. 

The important question in my mind surrounding this assertion is the following: "Better off than who?"

Well, most people are going to say that I am better off than those who were not spanked or smacked.

Now, before we entertain this assertion, let's back up just one baby step and consider the following fact. 

Any person who says that they are better off for being spanked or smacked holds a view of themselves which believes that they are better than other people!

There is no secret in this. People who say it just openly come out and say: I am better than other people. You can sugar coat it and say: No, wait a minute, that is not what we mean? Oh! Not in my book.

They are more holy
They are more righteous
They are more correct
They are better
They are more honest
They also know the truth better than other people 

This is exactly what Michael Pearl, for example, teaches:

"It has come to my attention that a vocal few are decrying our sensible application of the Biblical rod in training up our children. I laugh at my caustic critics, for our properly spanked and trained children grow to maturity in great peace and love.

Numbered in the millions, these kids become the models of self-control and discipline, highly educated and creative—entrepreneurs that pay the taxes your children will receive in entitlements. When your children finally find an honest mechanic or a trustworthy homebuilder, it will be one of ours.

When your children apply for a job it will be at a company our children founded. When they go to a doctor, it will be one of our Christian children that heals them with cutting edge innovation. When your adult kids go for therapy it will be one of our kids-become-psychologist that directs them to the couch and challenges them to release their self-loathing and embrace hope for a better tomorrow."


They are just simply better people because they sin less than other people! 

Yes, that is correct. They are better off for being spanked or smacked.

They are "models of self-control" 
They are "highly educated"
They are "creative"
They are "honest"
They are "business owners" who are more successful, more blessed, smarter and richer than others!

It is almost as if unless you are spanked/smacked you are never going to become anything good in the mind of these dear misguided people.

So how does this view square with Scripture?
How Does God Look At People Who Hold Such A View of Themselves?

In reflecting on this idea, there is one idea that really comes to mind: 100% ARROGANCE!

There really is a supreme arrogance, a superiority, a condescensionary type of elevated look that people who hold this view seem to exhibit. At least that is my experience. I guess I could be wrong, but it seems to me to be a common trait of people who were raised like this.

They have a tendency to look down on others
They have a tendency to pontificate
They have a tendency to lecture and find fault

It really reminds me of an ancient prayer that my father used to put in all of his publications. For me, it really represents a fundamental truth that I was raised with. 

I was raised and taught that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God and because of that, you need to show humility and not be arrogant or think you are better than anyone else. And I mean ANYONE!

Here is the prayer I am referring to here and many who have read anything I've written will remember this prayer. It is really a part of me personally.

From the cowardice that shrinks from new truth,
From the laziness that is content with half-truths'
From the arrogance that thinks it knows all truth,
O God of Truth, deliver us.-- Ancient Prayer

But to some people spanking and smacking are the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth and they themselves are all the proof that they need to know they are 100% correct.

I guess it is normal to think that one is a good person, that in the morass that surrounds us, we are above all of that. We are good people. We are holy, loving, virtuous, generous, intelligent, reverential, successful, etc.

The thing is, though, ARE WE all of these things?

But what does the Bible say about this orientation? 

Saint Paul: Standing in front of everyone in the Sinner Line

I am a big admirer of St. Paul. He was a straight talker! Saint Paul was a person well experienced with life. He tells us about his many experiences including many sufferings.

“But whatever anyone else dares to boast of—I am speaking as a fool—I also dare to boast of that. Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they offspring of Abraham? So am I. Are they servants of Christ? I am a better one—I am talking like a madman—with far greater labors, far more imprisonments, with countless beatings, and often near death. Five times I received at the hands of the Jews the forty lashes less one. Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I was adrift at sea; on frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from robbers, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brothers; in toil and hardship, through many a sleepless night, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. And, apart from other things, there is the daily pressure on me of my anxiety for all the churches. Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is made to fall, and I am not indignant? If I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness. The God and Father of the Lord Jesus, he who is blessed forever, knows that I am not lying. At Damascus, the governor under King Aretas was guarding the city of Damascus in order to seize me, but I was let down in a basket through a window in the wall and escaped his hands.” (II Corinthians 11:21-33 ESV)

He also speaks often of his many joys in Christ (Romans 15:32; II Corinthians 2:3; Philippians 2:2; I Timothy 2:20).

When we read Paul’s experiences, we can see that he lived a human life much like that which you and I experience today: a life of suffering and a life where one experiences great joy.

A part of Paul’s (and ours) experiences in life lead him to express his own shortcomings and human frailties when coming to the question of the daily task of reconstructing his own character. Paul (like you and especially I) had major challenges with this issue and this is exactly what he tells us. 

Paul did not hold a very high view of himself! Note what he said:

“What then shall we say? That the law is sin? By no means! Yet if it had not been for the law, I would not have known sin. For I would not have known what it is to covet if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.” But in, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, produced in me all kinds of covetousness. For apart from the law, sin lies dead. I was once alive apart from the law, but when the commandment came, sin came alive and I died. The very commandment that promised life proved to be death to me. For sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, deceived me and through it killed me. So the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.

Did that which is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin, producing death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin, and through the commandment might become sinful beyond measure. For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin. For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good. So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.” (Romans 7:7-24 ESV)

Paul saw inside of himself a delight in God’s law, but in his own experience, he found himself deficient (as are you and I) when it came to performance. His reference to his own shortcomings was not an isolated incident. He referred many times to his own personal nature, which he characterized as sinful, mortal, corruptible, and fleshly, terms an honest self-reflecting person is very familiar with. Note what he told Timothy:

“I thank him who has given me strength, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he judged me faithful, appointing me to his service, though formerly I was a blasphemer, persecutor, and insolent opponent. But I received mercy because I had acted ignorantly in unbelief, and the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost.”  (I Timothy 1:12-15 ESV)

It is interesting that Paul did not say that he “was” previously the “foremost” sinner. No! He uses the present tense to describe his earthly condition. Let us be honest though, Paul was doing his best to pursue his Christian walk, but found that “I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing.” (ibid.)

Paul comes right out and says it. I am the foremost sinner. You just can't even think for a moment of Paul coming out and saying: "I am better than other people." Hardly! 

Isn't it interesting that even after all of his trials and tribulations, all of the miracles he wrought, all of the Scripture he wrote, what does he tell Timothy:

 "Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost.”  (I Timothy 1:15 ESV)  

Paul underwent many trials, but he never chose to elevate himself. On the contrary, he headed right to the front of the sinner line. 

Many of the proponents of corporal punishment/smacking/spanking don't seem to have this orientation that St. Paul had.

They are not more sinful than other people.

They are good people

They are better than other people because they have been "corrected." 

They have been "disciplined."

We can give some other examples from Scripture

This idea of saying that one is better than other people because they were disciplined is really captured clearly in the following parable.

 "And He spoke this parable unto certain ones who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: "Two men went up into the temple to pray, the one a Pharisee and the other a publican. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, ‘God, I thank Thee that I am not as other men are: extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week; I give tithes of all that I possess.’ And the publican, standing afar off, would not so much as lift up his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’ I tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other; for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased, and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.” (Luke 18:9-14)

Where do you think Paul would have oriented himself in this parable? Pretty obvious I think.

Jesus makes the whole matter clear and orients us properly

We've seen the example of Paul and how he looked at himself, but let's now look at an even stronger example, I think. It is that given by Christ Himself.

"And a ruler asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone." (Luke 18:18-19 ESV)

We can go round and round on what this means exactly, but I think it is telling us that mankind needs to reach to a higher example, an example outside of himself, because I think it is fairly clear that if we look horizontally, we can all agree that man, generally speaking, is not good, no matter what these "holier than thou" types say.

Let's agree with Jesus who said: .

“Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone." (Luke 18:18-19 ESV)

I'd welcome your view.


austin said...

This is one of thee most ridiculous articles I have ever read. What kind of person goes to such lengths to try to undermine what is totally reasonable and acceptable in the sight of our Lord Jesus? Why would someone lay as a foundation, to speak against corporal punishment, words that assume even conclude that these people that "spank" slash "smack" their children are all portraying themselves as "holier than thou"? You cite people and articles from such arrogant abuses of what has always been for me loving and appropriate discipline, and use these misguided people and their comments as a reason to set aside spanking a child, even if the loving use of this discipline is acceptable, allowable and even effective before God our Father. Do you see scripture railing as you do against the proper and loving use of corporal correction? Let me ask you some serious questions sir. When a Mom and Dad choose to put a child in "Time-out", who in their right mind would accuse that parent of child abandonment as they sit in a corner on a chair. If a parent sent their child to their room, who in their right mind would accuse those parents of unlawful imprisonment? Yet, whenever a loving parent makes the decision to spank their child on their bottom, for a reason they feel will not just curtail the wrong behavior, but "correct' it (and that's the long term goal for the betterment of the child not the parent) why would anyone ever conclude that these parents have "abused" their child or done something "wrong?" Could it be that they have struggled to find an answer to something that was never a problem with the Lord? Could it be, as you confessed, that in disagreeing with your Dad, or whoever, you finally found an answer (as you said yourself) to something that needed no answer. Yes, there are abuses, and yes some parents do the wrong thing. But if a parent yells loudly at a child inappropriately, do we start telling all parents that raising your voice is evil, wrong, not right, unlawful, unrighteous and must be avoided, abandoned and even spoken against? I remember screaming at the top of my lungs at my child . . . she was about to run out into the street and a car was coming, and she stopped immediately, in fact, I believe to this day, my voice saved her life. My friend, I spanked (smacked?) both my children as they were growing up, only when as a good and loving parent, decided it was an appropriate method needed to immediately teach a strong lesson and "correct" the behavior. It was my sovereign right and duty as a Dad, and in those few times I did it, never once, not for one second, did I do anything wrong before God. Stop hurting the ways of the Lord who wants good parents to lovingly discipline their children and at times, if they see fit, use loving corporal discipline on the children they love and care about. If it's chosen out of love, administered from love, and produces right behavior, it should not be viewed as something wrong or evil or inappropriate. Find another cause to decry that will keep evil, real evil at bay. Don't rail against good parents, who chose righteous and acceptable methods to lovingly guide the growth and behavior of their immature children to good and loving adults. I feel strongly you will not publish my comments, but they are aimed at you personally. I will pray that they are not heard in vain. May God give you a higher cause than preventing good parents from using righteous and acceptable discipline when they lovingly believe it is needed and appropriate. I am not holier than anyone, but I know the Lord is happy with the way I lovingly rewarded and punished my children because I wanted them to follow the ways of God. May God have mercy on our souls.

Samuel Martin said...

Hi and thanks for your inputs.

Please note that this post is a part of quite a large body of writing that I have done on this subject.

I can understand how you might evaluate this post as you have.

Perhaps you might consider reading some of my more foundational materials because this might help you better understand and contextualize where I am coming from.

The best place to start is with my free ebook - http://whynottrainachild.com/2013/06/22/download-martins-book/

Here is one review from only one scholar of my book and what I am doing - http://redemptivechristianity.com/?p=214

In closing, I just got this from a loving Christian dad who gave me a wonderful Palm Sunday present.

Talk about something to make your Palm Sunday - Just got this from a father of four - "I want begin by telling you I appreciate the fight you have waged on so many important topics. Your studies into corporal punishment helped convince my wife (and a reluctant me) of the need to gentle parent. It has done wonders for our family." - www.facebook.com/byblechyld

austin said...

So when Jesus turned over the tables in the temple he sinned? No, he had a righteous anger and He did the right thing as always. When a Dad, a Father, a Mother need to be stern (like the word rebuke, it's in the bible) they have every reason and right to not act as if somehow the fear it may bring to a child's mind is wrong. Gentleness is not a requirement when punishing a child. If gentleness were the goal in discipline the good Lord "who is holier than thou" would have said so. Reread Hebrews 12 when you have time and stop reading men's works that make you feel better about what you know nothing about. trust me, I know the hardest words to say for us are "I was wrong". We just continue to justify ourselves by claiming plain words were taken out of context. Or we send another man's view to bolster our feeling that we were right all along. here's the bottom line. BIBLE says that all discipline is painful (Hebrews 12) and that it brings about righteousness, and peace (gentleness in a child that is well trained when young). I stand by my original comments, and mostly because this assault against really good parents who willingly and lovingly spanked their children when it was appropriate had great kids that turned out very well, and should never be made to feel that it was I any way motivated by what you propose, but rather 100% love, which is what it is in many very good parenting homes that use it. If a Mother or father feels a lack of self control when they punish, that's not a spanking problem, that's a Mom and dad problem. Gentle parenting is simply our way of saying, 'It's hard for me at times to ever punish my child, so I will do what makes me feel better about what I do" . . . which does make you feel better, it must or you wouldn't use it. But I have never once considered what would make me feel better when choosing what was appropriate punishment for a child's behavior, and even when I spanked my child (rare, very rare) it was always for their benefit to correct the behavior. We can go back and forth about this but the proof is in my kids. they are living testimony to how I parented and at times chose to apply corporal punishment. My dad beat the you know what out of me when I was growing up. He actually knocked me out as a teenager. but he was a drinker and a non Christian. BUT I never believed that just because he was a violent physical man, that I was supposed to abandon the proper way to lovingly discipline my kids when and if they needed that form of discipline. I could have easily made excuses for setting aside corporal punishment because of the perverse way it was used against me. But I chose to prayerfully execute it when needed, and that was my right, my method and my joy, as I watched it help my kids make changes and grow up into very good adults. I am not holier than anyone, but my Lord is, and it is never hinted in scripture that all parents who used "the rod" (I never used nan object but my palm on a bottom) to correct, were somehow missing something he was teaching us. No, those scriptures that we try to treat as culturally irrelevant and archaic are full of wisdom and as relevant and useful as they were the moment they were written. I will end by saying, I loved my kids enough to not let my soft feelings and desire to never see them cry or be sad, get in the way of me being the best dad I could be, and I am thankful that the lord gave me the wisdom to overcome the temptation to be slack when it came to consistent and loving discipline . . . yes even, corporal discipline. May it continue to be lovingly administered. Love, always, Austin.
I don't always sound gentle in my emails . . . but my heart is in the right place. I trust you will know that I mean no harm, only help. John 3:30

Christina said...

Great writing. Another point is that when someone says they are better for being spanked it is to say "I would have been more evil and out of control and possibly a criminal if I were never spanked." It is completely ridiculous to believe that hitting another person develops good character.

austin said...

Hitting another person? That's like saying that God asking us not to murder and then he destroyed nations, did the wrong thing. Do you see the difference between "hitting a person" and lovingly applying corporal punishment when a sovereign parent believes it is needed and correctly applies it? Are you saying that putting a child in time out or sending them to their room builds character? The goal of punishment is to punish. The goal of spanking is to correct and change behavior. there is nothing evil about corporal punishment, but to the emotionally soft and those that would never want their child to feel pain or suffer at their hand in any way, do not complain when they refuse to obey you, or they grow up out of control, because you were making sure you didn't feel bad about correcting your child. I raised two kids to adulthood, and rarely spanked them, but when I did, it worked, and they were the better for being corrected. I didn't hit my children, anymore than you didn't abandon your child when you set them in a corner alone, or you didn't imprison your child when you sent them to their room. Spanking works, when applied out of love from a parent who is interested in training their child to behave, not interested in what will not cause their child any sadness or pain. Read Hebrews 12, and then try to argue with God about discipline. These comments about hitting are misguided and terribly foolish. Wisdom is justified by the children she bears. We shall se what happens . . . but if the holy scriptures are not opposed to corporal punishment, you might ask yourself, why am I?

Samuel Martin said...


I would urge you to consider a view of a Christian father of four who read my free ebook.



Sam Martin

Anonymous said...

Quoting the Bible to defend your beliefs is the most non-convincing way to promote you argument. For anybody. On any thing. Why? Because every single person will find some quote, some where, that they "interpet" as supporting their view. This whole blog post is nothing but people saying "But, look at THIS line". Pointless.

Anonymous said...

So glad I'm not a Christian anymore. Don't have to deal with "God mandated" corporal punishment and I can just love my kids, letting them flourish. The home should be a place of security, a sanctuary. Not a place a child fears.

Anonymous said...

I am a new Christian and hence new to the bible .I have to admit that I was very close to leaving my faith until I read Samuel Martins blog.I have also read his credentials and trust in his in-depth knowledge of the Bible .Thanks to Samuel and his writings I have regained my faith in Christianity and Christians .
Thanks to the above post I just read Hebrews 12 .I dont see in that verse where we are encouraged to hit/spank our children .In fact I cant see how you could interpret that verse as a reason to hurt/ humiliate your child, I do see the word discipline ,as in disciple/ guide.
Also I have worked with children for almost 2 decades ,some with severe behavioral issues .I NEVER laid a finger on them in punishment ,in fact I dont believe in time-outs either because as you say its abandonment and I God doesn't abandon us when we mess up .ALL of my children (despite their challenges ) are wonderful ,respectful ,college grads (or college bond).
Samuel is a man of Grace and hence handles his debates like a gentle man ,he has not called anyone out of name ,unlike a previous poster .When the argument is lost the looser resorts to slander .

Anonymous said...

I am a new Christian and hence new to the bible .I have to admit that I was very close to leaving my faith until I read Samuel Martins blog.I have also read his credentials and trust in his in-depth knowledge of the Bible .Thanks to Samuel and his writings I have regained my faith in Christianity and Christians .
Thanks to the above post I just read Hebrews 12 .I dont see in that verse where we are encouraged to hit/spank our children .In fact I cant see how you could interpret that verse as a reason to hurt/ humiliate your child, I do see the word discipline ,as in disciple/ guide.
Also I have worked with children for almost 2 decades ,some with severe behavioral issues .I NEVER laid a finger on them in punishment ,in fact I dont believe in time-outs either because as you say its abandonment and I God doesn't abandon us when we mess up .ALL of my children (despite their challenges ) are wonderful ,respectful ,college grads (or college bond).
Samuel is a man of Grace and hence handles his debates like a gentle man ,he has not called anyone out of name ,unlike a previous poster .When the argument is lost the looser resorts to slander .

Christina said...

Sorry to hear it...it is God's mercy and grace that empowers me to show the same mercy and grace to my children. Those who teach violence against children deny the work of the cross and are workers destroying the body of Christ

Christina said...

Sorry to hear. Because of the mercy and grace shown me I am empowered to show mercy and grace. Punishment denies the work of the cross.

Anonymous said...

Austin, I am 100% on your side. To the others....having been spanked myself as a young child, I have never, ever walked about acting as if I am holier than thou, though I am thankful for the loving discipline my parents raised me with. The Bible teaches that we are all sinners (no one less or greater than the other). Doesn't matter if you were spanked or were not spanked; do spank or do not spank - all are equally as sinful at the foot of the cross. Being spanked has nothing to do with personal holiness or an attitude of self-righteousness. I find Mr. Martin's argument to this end quite distasteful.

If Mr. Martin feels that it is violence to administer the rod according to the principles laid out in Scripture, then it should be equally as horrible to take those Scriptures and change their definition and label all spanking as abuse and "smacking."

Samuel Martin said...


Thanks for writing.

By the way, the use of the term "smacking" is one which in some English speaking countries means the same as "spanking."

Samuel Martin

Lelia Schott said...

I enjoyed this article. Thank You Samuel for sharing truth and light. It can be difficult for some people to hear. But I like it because you are reaching people and softening their hearts to be more like Jesus.You are helping people see the importance of treating children with respect and honoring each other in the home for our authenticity. To me that is the greatest gift you could give anyone. Thank You

TealRose said...

austin .... where in your Bible do you find Christ telling us to hit our children? Christ died on the cross for us ALL, he brought grace to us ALL not just to adults. Children should be treated like the precious souls they are, and not hit into submission. Christ warned us not to make our children stumble, or it would be better to have a millstone put about our necks and thrown into the sea. He told us that to enter heaven we had to become as a child. What therefore makes you believe that somehow He would say that on one hand, and think children are somehow evil creatures that need knocking into shape on the other ? Respect needs to be given to children .. and hitting is not respectful. You want it, you think you 'deserve' it then give it first. You can't hurt ie hit and love, it's just not possible. Ask any adult that has been hit by their spouse. As much as you may THINK and feel you love that little one, if you hit them ... that is not a loving nor gentle nor right thing to do.

Thank you Samuel for showing us so clearly how Christ never intended for children to be hit !