Rebellious teenager

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LilyG

Puritan Board Freshman
Teens are meant to be rebellious. Their “rebellion” informs them to find jobs, leave their parents, start families, make their parents happy, and come back with their wives and toddlers to church. Where would we all be without teens asking frightening questions and genuinely coming to faith?

I learned a lot from rebellious teens who asked embarrassing questions and eventually won answers. Some of the most rebellious I know are most reliable, faithful Christians today in middle age.

They are not meant to be rebellious. Growing more independent, processing what they have been taught and confess, working through hang-ups, doubts and questions, sure.

Not rebellious. "Honor your father and your mother..."
 

CovenantPatriot87

Puritan Board Freshman
I agree, I do not think physical discipline is in any way appropriate. I was very surprised by the other response.
The church we are currently attending is wonderful. We just disagree about baptism and therefore can't become members. It has been so hard to know what to do. But I am submitting to my husband's decisions on where we worship.
I think you should be deciding that together as you are both following Christ. Your his wife, not his child. Ya'll should be studying both sides of the issue together and then eventually, you should come to an agreement together.
 

iainduguid

Puritan Board Junior
I mean...thats what it says...
First, this isn't how wisdom literature works. It takes wisdom to apply proverbs because you have to know where the proverb fits. Is this an "Answer the fool according to his folly" situation or a "Don't answer a fool according to his folly"? It depends; some proverbs have universal applicability, others don't. It's not clear to me why you have applied this proverb just to teenagers rather than wives, servants, infants, or the state discipline of offenders: the proverb doesn't say "Beat a teenager until he is bruised." So your conclusion doesn't rest simply on "that's what it says"

Second, what Proverbs 20:30 says, literally, is "Blows that wound rub away evil". The word for "blows" here (chabburot) is never used of child discipline. It is generally used of wounds suffered by adults, inflicted by by man or God (Exod. 21:25; Ps 38:6; Isa. 1:6; 53:5). Ditto the parallel term, "stripes" (makkeh; Lev. 26:21; Deut. 25:3; Isa. 1:6, etc.). In other words, the proverb is explaining how we (believers) should receive hard providences (which may or may not involve physical bruises) as God's gracious discipline to spare us from something worse.

Hence John Gill says: "Some men must be beaten black and blue, or must have very sore correction, before they can be reclaimed and reformed from their evil ways; so some interpret it of the evil man: sanctified afflictions to God's people are the means of purging away their iniquities, their dross, and their sin; but there is nothing so effectually cleanses from sin as the blood of Jesus, or heals or cures of it as his blue wounds and stripes."
 

Devoted

Puritan Board Freshman
I think you should be deciding that together as you are both following Christ. Your his wife, not his child. Ya'll should be studying both sides of the issue together and then eventually, you should come to an agreement together.
Well sure. But in the case of disagreement, is not the wife supposed to defer to her husband's judgment as long as he is not asking her to sin? And anyway, that's not the point of this post.
 

CovenantPatriot87

Puritan Board Freshman
First, this isn't how wisdom literature works. It takes wisdom to apply proverbs because you have to know where the proverb fits. Is this an "Answer the fool according to his folly" situation or a "Don't answer a fool according to his folly"? It depends; some proverbs have universal applicability, others don't. It's not clear to me why you have applied this proverb just to teenagers rather than wives, servants, infants, or the state discipline of offenders: the proverb doesn't say "Beat a teenager until he is bruised." So your conclusion doesn't rest simply on "that's what it says"

Second, what Proverbs 20:30 says, literally, is "Blows that wound rub away evil". The word for "blows" here (chabburot) is never used of child discipline. It is generally used of wounds suffered by adults, inflicted by by man or God (Exod. 21:25; Ps 38:6; Isa. 1:6; 53:5). Ditto the parallel term, "stripes" (makkeh; Lev. 26:21; Deut. 25:3; Isa. 1:6, etc.). In other words, the proverb is explaining how we (believers) should receive hard providences (which may or may not involve physical bruises) as God's gracious discipline to spare us from something worse.

Hence John Gill says: "Some men must be beaten black and blue, or must have very sore correction, before they can be reclaimed and reformed from their evil ways; so some interpret it of the evil man: sanctified afflictions to God's people are the means of purging away their iniquities, their dross, and their sin; but there is nothing so effectually cleanses from sin as the blood of Jesus, or heals or cures of it as his blue wounds and stripes."
Would this not be the same idea for the rod passages as well? Why then must we appeal to "wisdom" outside the text of the rod passages in proverbs to come up with a doctrine of "spanking"?
 

CovenantPatriot87

Puritan Board Freshman
Well sure. But in the case of disagreement, is not the wife supposed to defer to her husband's judgment as long as he is not asking her to sin? And anyway, that's not the point of this post.
Are you paedo or credo? I guess thats my next question. I actually forbid my wife (ironically) to defer to my judgment even if (I think) it ends up me being right. The devil is a lot more subtle that just "asking" or "suggesting" something black and white. There is a reason Eve was decieved since it required ignorance of something the devil could latch onto. I always want her to own things for herself and not because im the man. You could say we are a board of directors :p
 

iainduguid

Puritan Board Junior
Would this not be the same idea for the rod passages as well? Why then must we appeal to "wisdom" outside the text of the rod passages in proverbs to come up with a doctrine of "spanking"?
The "rod" passages do explicitly connect discipline with youth (Prov. 22:15; 23:13; 29:15). But yes, basic interpretation of any Biblical proverb involves wisdom. Do I have to spank for every offense? What range of ages does na'ar cover? Do I have to use a rod or will my hand serve adequately? Since the Hebrew word shebet can mean "cudgel" as well as "rod," should I discipline my child with a cudgel? Any single proverb will not give you a complete philosophy of child discipline, and if we use the wrong proverb for the particular situation, then we can do severe damage (Prov. 26:7, 9).
 

CovenantPatriot87

Puritan Board Freshman
Serious question: Do you leave bruises on your children when you discipline them?
Of course not! Not at five, two and seven months. These are not na'arim's. I dont hit them at all, lol.

Its interesting that no one is able to "obey" these texts because its been turned into a catch-22 promise. You if you took these text literally it would deemed "child abuse" but if you make them into something else you are now disobeying what it actually says.
 
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Tom Hart

Puritan Board Senior
@CovenantPatriot87,

Respectfully, I do not think your contributions here are helpful to the conversation; they have taken it rather off course from the OP. I would urge you to take your considerations to another thread.
 

iainduguid

Puritan Board Junior
Of course not! Not at five, two and seven months. These are not na'arim's. I dont hit them at all, lol.

Its interesting that no one is able to "obey" these texts because its been turned into a catch-22 promise. You if you took these text literally it would deemed "child abuse" but if you make them into something else you are now disobeying what it actually says.
Actually, in Biblical terms they are ne'arim (if they are boys), as I demonstrated in my earlier post (see 1 Sam. 4:21; Exod. 2:6). na'ar is a term with very broad semantic range. But that doesn't mean you should beat them black and blue (there is actually nothing color related in the Hebrew of Prov. 20:30: these are "Blows that wound"). Again, Proverbs don't become meaningless just because we don't interpret them as literal commands: nobody interprets Proverbs 25:24 as an instruction to live on the corner of your roof because you happen to have a quarrelsome wife. We interpret proverbs as proverbs, and let them guide our behavior appropriately. I cited John Gill to give one example of how Reformed interpretation of this proverb has not in the past seen it as instruction for child discipline. Can you give examples of well-respected Reformed scholars who agree with your position?
 

Elizabeth

Puritan Board Sophomore
Oh, Kristin, I am so sorry for your pain.
I know the seemingly unbearable sorrow of these things.
Please know that the Lord keeps your heart, not your son. We tend to idolize our children.
Your home is your (as parents) domain, you make the rules.
Set your face like flint over this.
Try to remove the motherly emotion and concern as much as possible when dealing with your son.
Be straightforward and unbending when warranted. Don't let him work you.
Be prepared to let him go emotionally. This may be the best thing for him. Get stern. I wish I had.
I let my girls have their own way because I felt they were so very special.
Nope...they are just sinners like the rest of us. Remember this.
Face like flint. Protect your other children.
Do not beat this young man as has been suggested.
There is a whole society just waiting for you to do that.
Again: be firm, don't be manipulated. Set that face like flint.
Pray, but don't give your life over to this chaos.
You have other responsibilities: to your Lord, your husband and your other children.
 

LilyG

Puritan Board Freshman
Dear sister, I empathize as I think about my oldest brother, the black sheep of the family, who gave my parents much grief (now a believer - praise the Lord!). I have young children of my own, and sometimes agonize over this possibility. This post from the Heidelblog was helpful, and I remembered you.

 
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