“Should teenage children be spanked for disobedience or rudeness?”
No! Teenagers desperately want to be thought of as adults. Spanking is the ultimate insult. Punishment for adolescents should involve lost privileges, financial deprivation and related forms of non-physical retribution.
--Dr. James Dobson, Minister for Focus on the Family
“Questions Parents ask about discipline,” pamphlet, 1993
| You know you are in trouble whenever a Christian, Muslim, or Baha’i believer, all from religions with “Old Testament” roots that nonetheless follow, what they believe at least to be, newer revelations, suddenly decide to “go back to the Old Testament” to "pick and choose" child abuse permissions. This is religious quackery at its highest. If beating children and adolescents is so much a “part of their faith,” then why can’t they find the “permission” or “command” to beat children in their own dispensational teachings? There is only one people on earth who those “Old Testament” books were given to—and the known remnant of that one country, modern Israel, does not allow any corporal punishment of any kind in its schools. The one people that those books were given to have even banned child hitting in the home! Any of the rest of us, non-Israeli or non-Jews, can’t even say those “Old Testament” teachings ever were given to us. They served perhaps as a “schoolmaster” to bring knowledge of Christ, according to the Apostle Paul, and served to provide the backdrop for several other revelations as well, but that is merely the “schoolmaster” evolution of religion that Paul was talking about (Galatians 3:24-25). Paul was saying, in effect, that the “Old Testament” was a primer, or an “early grade” lesson plan, and Christians of his time had since advanced to something higher. That isn’t a slam to today’s Jews either. They have likewise advanced to far more advanced social practices in other writings of their own. If Israel today doesn’t feel compelled to beat children, adults, or slaves, or to form a brutal Monarchy, then why should anyone from any other faith, to whom those Scriptures were never given?|
| Christians are very specifically condemned for trying to bring even one verse of the “Old Testament” into “New Testament law.” The Apostle Paul made it very clear to the Galatians, even those with a Hebrew heritage whom the Torah was given to, that if they went “back to the old law,” even on only one matter, then they “crucified Christ afresh,” and His sacrifice did them no good whatsoever (Galatians 5:4, Hebrews 6:6). He also told the Jewish Christians who were trying to get Gentile Christians to become circumcised, and to selectively follow “Jewish” Old Testament dietary laws for religious reasons, that if they tried to pick out even one point of the law, they had to live by the whole law (Galatians 3:10, 5:3).|
| Unless you are a Jew, the “Old Testament” was never given to you. Even if you are a Jew, you have since advanced far beyond the primitive times where "Old Testament" rules were socially practiced. If you want to pick out a few verses about beating children, you also have to pull out verses to beat adults, to beat slaves to death, and to stone to death anyone who works from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday. If “crucifying Christ afresh” doesn’t bother today’s Christians who “hearken back to the Law” for permission to beat children, then at least they have to "take the whole law.” Paul does not permit Christians to sneak out a few bits and pieces of the law, whether circumcision, diet, child beating, or anything else that suits them, while leaving the rest behind.|
| We've already seen clearly that the early Christians never paddled teen and adult women in school, as “Christian” schools so often claim they “must do” today. It is not a “Christian practice” for men to strike the upturned buttocks of adolescents in school. If anything it is anti-Christ to do such things. Paddling girls, especially teens, at the very least violates the Apostle Paul’s command that young women should be modest (II Timothy 2:9). Paddling is itself a thousand times more immodest than any clothing a woman could wear that the Apostle Paul gave counsel on, and which girls are commonly paddled for.|
| This chapter opened with a sad letter from “Kelli.” She described how she felt when she was coerced into "bending over" in a dress for a paddling, at age 17, from a man at a Baptist School in Florida. She still very much suffered psychological effects from that paddling years later. Does the Bible really teach men to paddle women? Do we really believe that the male Dean had no sexual thoughts or motive when he paddled this very sexy and mature young woman? Was her “terrible sin” of holding hands with her boyfriend more or less sexual, or more or less immoral than this middle-aged man forcing her to bend over a desk while he beat her buttocks with a board? As Jesus warned the hypocritical Pharisees: "Get the log out of your own eye so you can see clearly to get the speck out of someone else’s." In this case the log is polished and it has a handle.
This chapter opened with a sad letter from “Kelli.” She described how she felt when she was coerced into "bending over" in a dress for a paddling, at age 17, from a man at a Baptist School in Florida. She still very much suffered psychological effects from that paddling years later. Does the Bible really teach men to paddle women? Do we really believe that the male Dean had no sexual thoughts or motive when he paddled this very sexy and mature young woman? Was her “terrible sin” of holding hands with her boyfriend more or less sexual, or more or less immoral than this middle-aged man forcing her to bend over a desk while he beat her buttocks with a board? As Jesus warned the hypocritical Pharisees: "Get the log out of your own eye so you can see clearly to get the speck out of someone else’s." In this case the log is polished and it has a handle.|
| Some of our “Christian butt whackers” assert that they never paddle adolescents who were abused. The problem is no one on earth really knows which children or teens have been abused, or in what ways. Most keep it a dark secret. We know that the sexual abuse of children, girls particularly, is very common. Kelli was no exception, even though there was no “record” of her prior childhood victimization. A 21-year-old man from her church had previously raped Kelli when she was only 14. She kept the "dark secret" all her life from her parents, her later boyfriend, and everyone else. For all I know I’m the first person she told when she was in her late 20s. Our "paddle courts" and politicians would say, if rape had only to meet the definition of harm that paddling does in “paddle-whack” locales, that her "rape caused no permanent, visible, harm, so no harm was done." If we use that “whacko paddle standard" for harm, then sexual and psychological damages will never be considered—only bruises—and even they don’t legally constitute “harm” in many paddle-whack locales either. I'm guessing her bruises went away from both the rape and the paddling eventually, although she may have permanent scarring in her ruptured blood vessels. Sadly, in this “Christian school,” this “Christian man” did something to her that felt “just like rape,” only this man’s abuse was openly performed, and had the backing of religion and society.|