Wednesday, August 23, 2006

corporal evangelism

I came across this proverb this morning. I wonder if this is where the phrase "beat the hell out of him" came from.

Do not withhold correction from a child,
For if you beat him with a rod, he will not die.
You shall beat him with a rod,
And deliver his soul from hell.

- Proverbs 23:13-14 NKJV

I wonder if this principle applies to everyone and not just our children. If it does, we may have found the new form of evangelism that the mainline churches have been looking for: Beat them with a rod to bring their souls to God!

10 comments:

needscorrection said...

Just what we need at church, the "rod of correction". Perhaps our ushers can use it on those who don't tithe as well.

Anonymous said...

Nope, General Conference says no to spanking children.

Jason, I nominate you to write a petition to allow corporal punishment when a UMC elder confesses to lying to the church about his ordination vows. You can tell them, hey, its less painful than lying to the Holy Spirit.

On 2004-MAY-31 the United Methodist Church's General Conference passed two anti-spanking resolutions -- each by an overwhelming vote. In doing so, they repudiated the teachings of their founder, John Wesley, who believed in the corporal punishment of infants and children was necessary "to break their rebellious wills and save their souls." 1

Delegates from the Grace United Methodist Church in Sioux City IA presented two petitions to the UMC 2004 General Conference.

"Corporal Punishment by Parents and Caretakers:"
The first petition passed by a vote of 88 to 0, with 18 abstentions, from the Church and Society Committee. It was later overwhelmingly passed by a vote of 892 to 7 by the Assembly delegates. It was Petition Number 41038, (41038 CS R9999).

Whereas, corporal punishment models aggressive behavior as a solution to conflict,
Whereas, some research has associated corporal punishment with increased aggression in children and adults, increased substance abuse, increased risk of crime and violence, low self-esteem, and chronic depression,
Whereas it is difficult to imagine Jesus of Nazareth condoning any action that is intended to hurt children physically or psychologically,
Whereas, time outs and deprivation of privileges are as effective as corporal punishment in stopping undesirable behavior,
Whereas, the effectiveness of corporal punishment decreases with subsequent use and therefore leads caretakers to hit children more severely,
Whereas, children must eventually develop their own conscience and self discipline, which are fostered by a home environment of love, respect and trust,

Therefore, be it resolved that the United Methodist Church encourages its members to adopt discipline methods that do not include corporal punishment of their children. And be it further resolved that the United Methodist Church encourages congregations to offer opportunities for dialogue and education on effective discipline of children. 2

The second "whereas" is an apparent reference to some of the long-term studies that have been made in Ontario, Canada and New Zealand.

The Peace of Jesus Christ be with y'all,

John Flores
Frisco, Texas
John Flores

Jason Woolever said...

but maybe it will fly if we can convince them that its for evangelism!

Anonymous said...

It’s lame that we disagree with what God has given us. The rod is not meant to beat the crap out of someone and damage them. Everyone needs boundaries, and a loving parent (and a loving God) will set those boundaries and provide consequences for crossing them. Sometimes it can be done with time outs and deprivation of privileges, sometimes it can not. I am in no way advocating violence against kids – proper discipline has to be administered with love, compassion, and a complete lack of anger to be effective. I do believe however that sometimes effective discipline involves corporal punishment, so count me on the side with the Bible and John Wesley.

bandlady said...

Speaking as a teacher, I wish more parents would grow a spine and realize that they are PARENTS and follow through with a little corporal punishment once in a while. Many of my students are in control of their lives and their parents, having no fear of punishment or consequences. Believe me, getting a swat once in a while from my parents (which was definitely deserved) did me a world of good, even if I didn't like it and didn't like them for a while.

Parents are so afraid of being liked by their kids. That's not your job. Your job is to lovingly parent and discipline when required. In turn, your kids will respect and social boundaries. Evenutally, they'll see that it is for their own good and they'll do more than like you; they'll love and RESPECT you and those they encounter in the future.

Jason Woolever said...

on one side is james dobson and john wesley and on the other is general conference.

Anonymous said...

Thus is the problem sometimes with organized religions with men trying to "better" what God taught, or "conform" to societal norms.

God is eternal, He does not change, "6 I the LORD do not change. So you, O descendants of Jacob, are not destroyed. 7 Ever since the time of your forefathers you have turned away from my decrees and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you," says the LORD Almighty." Malachi 3:6-7

It hurts me to think that any church, Methodist or otherwise, is making changes to doctrine based on pressures from society....and yes I am Methodist.

Jason Woolever said...

it is scary, isn't it!

Carol Herdien said...

When I was a kid, teachers could spank a child and they would get another one from Dad when he would hear about it. When my kids were growing up, parents could spank. Now Mom and Dad could be arrested.

Hey, Jason, I still have an old (1968) Board of Correction (shaped like a fraternity paddle I bought at Turkey Run that kids could sign after being paddled) -- No, I don't mean beating a child! You could use it to enlighten those who keep all their money for themselves and fail to give what is due to God.

Sometimes a swat on the behind was the only message a child would understand, especially those that ran into the street or who wandered away rom their yard. Reasoning and timeouts are for when they are older. Of course this was the answer in the 1950's. A simpler and less complicated time.

Perhaps God will use his "Board of Correction" on all those who fail Him.

Carol Herdien

Jason Woolever said...

If its good enough for Carol Herdien, its good enough for me.
I like your idea also of not only using the rod for an evangelism tool, but as a stewardship tool.