Sunday, October 9, 2011

Drawing the line between "spanking" and "abuse"

I was just thinking...if you were to talk to your "average" pro-life Christian about abortion...and you would discuss with them the topic of "when does a baby become a baby?" They would agree that the  pro-choice mentality of choosing when they think that babies become babies is very arbitrary and based on opinion and not fact. They would find this type of reasoning offensive.

BUT...talk to those same Christians about when "spanking" becomes "abuse" and interestingly...they begin to sound an awful lot like the people they believe have faulty reasoning...

OK...so...in order to eliminate the "arbitrary" nature of some pro-spanking reasoning and to take the "opinion" out of the argument...let's define that line for everyone.
Let's...draw it out...and make it all clear. Just the way we'd like to get the pro-choice camp to clearly define (and support scientifically) when a baby becomes a baby...let us clearly define (and support scientifically) when spanking becomes abuse...and prove that spanking is good for children...

I feel the best way to define it is to answer some questions definitively...questions that can be answered without exception in all cases...
And, since the Bible tells us to be prepared to have an answer for your beliefs I feel it is important for Christians who do spank (in the name of God) to have answers (or at least some reasonable idea if not the actual answer) for all of these questions:


When is it proper to strike your children?
When would Jesus strike a child?
What types of offenses are worthy of a spanking?
For what offenses would Jesus strike a child?
At what age should spanking begin?
At what age should spanking cease?
Should a child's intelligence be factored in? (For example, would you begin spanking a very intelligent child sooner than a child with Down's Syndrome?)
The children referred to in the Bible as those to be struck with a rod were "teenagers". In what way has it changed that we now do not strike teenagers and only little kids? When did this change and why?
How "hard" (how much force) is acceptable (non-abusive) when spanking Biblically?
How many pounds per square inch of force are acceptable to strike a child with and at what point do they change to "unacceptable"?
Should the pounds per square inch of force be lessened if more strikes are necessary?
How many strikes at what force are non-abusive?
If fewer strikes are going to be applied, should greater force be used?
Does it make a difference if the spanking is done on the buttocks, back of legs, or back?
Which parts of the body are considered "OK" to strike in a non-abusive situation? Are all parts of the same body considered the same?
If there are some parts of the body which are not considered non-abusive, why or why not?
If some parts of the body are considered non-abusive to a "certain degree" please define.
How do we choose which part of the body to "spank" for different offenses?
At what age is it appropriate/inappropriate for a child to pull their pants down and bend over for a spanking?
Is spanking on the bare bottom an acceptable position for non-parents to use on a child?
Is it appropriate to use a hand when spanking on the bare bottom?
Is it appropriate for anyone but the child's parent to use a hand on their bare bottom?
Which part of the body is the preferred by God for non-abusive spanking?
Which parts of the body are considered by God to be abusive for spanking?
What verses in the Bible substantiate these beliefs?
Do we take into account the material the striking tool is made of when calculating the strike force of non-abusive spanking?
How much force is acceptable (non-abusive) for rubber spatulas?
What determines if the line has been crossed into "abuse" with this "rod"?
How much force is acceptable (non-abusive) for plastic spatulas?
What determines if the line has been crossed into "abuse" with this "rod"? 
How much force is acceptable (non-abusive) for wooden spatulas?
What determines if the line has been crossed into "abuse" with this "rod"? 
How much force is acceptable (non-abusive) for mixed-material spatulas?
What determines if the line has been crossed into "abuse" with this "rod"? 
How much force is acceptable (non-abusive) for a "switch" made from a tree?
What determines if the line has been crossed into "abuse" with this "rod"? 
How much force is acceptable (non-abusive) for whatever type of "rod" a parent prefers?
What determines if the line has been crossed into "abuse" with this "rod"? 
How does a parent choose a "rod"?
Which rod would Jesus most likely use?
Would Jesus choose different rods for different age children?
Where in the Bible would we look to find answers to this?
What about using the hand?
How much force is acceptable (non-abusive) for using a hand?
How does one take into account the thickness of the skin of the spank-ee when calculating the correct amount of force to use? (ie: smaller children have thinner skin...)
How does one take into account the material the skin is covered with? If it is a diaper, underpants only, skirt and underpants, jeans and underpants, jeans and diaper, etc.
How does a parent calculate the correct amount of force considering the material of the spanking tool and the child's skin and the materials covering the child's skin to apply the correct non-abusive force?
Where is the "line" that distinguishes between "abuse" and "non-abusive" spanking considering all the factors involved?
How many times is acceptable to strike a child within each different set of variables (rod material, strength of the striker, child's skin, clothing, etc.) before it becomes abuse?
How do we properly calculate how many strikes at what force for each variable is non-abuse and where is the line that crosses into "abuse"?
The 39 lashes that the Romans dished out to Jesus were considered a "death penalty" at 40 lashes because people often died from it. Should there then be a limited number of strikes for each "offense" that a child is to receive?
The number of lashes chosen by the Romans was based on the "rod" they used and it's destructive ability...so calculating the amount of hits a child should receive for each type of offense should include factors such as the chosen "rod" and it's "destructive force" (if it leaves marks or not) and the child's skin, clothing, and strength of the spanker?
How many strikes/lashes/hits/licks would Jesus choose for lying?
How many would Jesus choose for lying for the "umpteenth time"?
How many strikes would a child receive for general disobedience?
Would the number of strikes change based on age? (as with time-outs being 1 minute per year of age)
And, again, would the number of strikes be based on the child's age, skin thickness, clothing, "rod" material and the strength of the striker/spanker?
Also, certain times of the day the human body is more sensitive to pain than others, should this become a factor when calculating force and number of strikes?
What types of "marks" are acceptable?
At what point do "marks" become signs of "abuse"?
Do all "rods" leave marks?
If spanking on a bare bottom it is more likely to leave a mark than if it is thru a diaper or jeans, so, how should this be factored?
Should a "rod" be chosen which does not leave a mark?
Should a "rod" be chosen which does leave a mark to make sure the child has a reminder of the disciplining for a few hours to better make the point?
Why would leaving a mark matter?
How does one judge marks as a determination of abuse/non-abuse on a dark skinned child as opposed to a pale blonde haired child? (As the white child would redden quite quickly)
Does bruising constitute "abuse"?
What if your child "bruises easily" even in non-abusive situations?
If some bruising is acceptable, how do we measure "abusive" bruising? What is the size of a bruise which is "abuse" and what is the size of a bruise which is "non-abusive"?
What are the psychological benefits of being spanked?
What are the psychological problems with being abused?
Where would be the line and how would we know we've gotten close to that line based on our child's mental state?
Where is the line between being benefited and being detriment-ed in the spanking procedure and how would one tell that they've reached that limit?
In what way does being struck and caused pain by a parent draw the child closer to God?

HONESTLY couldn't I go on and on and on and on with questions???

Give examples from the Bible of times Jesus spanked people.
Picture Jesus in your mind with a small child looking frightened...over His knee...spanking them.
That's messed up.
All of this is messed up.
It's all sick.

Just as we know that when the pro-choice camp cannot answer the questions about when a baby becomes a baby means that they're in the wrong, then the ability or inability to answer these questions should indicate to us the same thing.



1 Peter 3:14-16
But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. and do not fear their intimidation, and do not be troubled,  but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame.

Really, if any position a Christian holds to can't stand up to a barrage of questions like this...it needs to be re-evaluated. 

Personally...I believe the easiest and most clear line which can be drawn and is 100% defensible and supported by science....between what is "abuse" and what is "non-abuse"...is hitting or not hitting. You just do not hit your children. Simple.

And, I can tell you that I not only have Jesus and science behind me...but I have personal experience as well...I have not ever hit my 3 year old...and she is not...a brat. She is not...out of control. She is not...ungodly. And, if I were to decide to ever hit her...something huge would have to change inside me...that would be a very bad...

Don't be afraid to have been wrong.
The worst thing about being wrong is when you choose to keep being wrong...

Below is a photo of an ancient shepherd's rod...
THIS is what the Bible is referring to when it says if you fail to use it...you hate your child.
Clearly...this is not for use ON your children.
Clearly...this is not = to a spatula or spoon...


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