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Taking a Tripp

I’m pre-dating this post (on March 1, 2008). This quotation needs be out there and exposed for what it’s worth: sloppy writing at best and bad theology at worst.

Tedd Tripp, in the much-acclaimed conservative Evangelical parenting manual Shepherding a Child’s Heart, says that spanking is redemptive. Look for yourself:

God has ordained the rod of discipline for this condition [sin/rebelliousness]. The spanking process (undertaken in a biblical manner set forth in ch 15) drives foolishness from the heart of a child. Confrontation with the immediate and undeniably tactile sensation of a spanking renders an implacable child sweet. I have seen this principle hold true countless times. The young child who is refusing to be under authority is in a place of grave danger.

The rod is given for this extremity. “Punish him [a child] with the rod and save his soul from death” (Prov 23.14). Your children’s souls are in danger of death–spiritual death. Your task is to rescue your children from death. Faithful and timely use of the rod is the means of rescue. [emphasis added]

This places the rod in its proper setting. Use of the rod is not a matter of an angry parent venting his wrath upon a small, helpless child. The rod is wielded by a faithful parent, recognizing his child’s dangerous state, employing a God-given remedy. The issue is not a parental insistence on being disobeyed. The issue is the child’s need to be rescued from death–the death that results from rebellion left unchallenged in the heart. (106-107)

[tags]Tedd Tripp, Shepherding a Child’s Heart, Evangelical Child Rearing[/tags]

2 thoughts on “Taking a Tripp

  1. Hey Camille – Do you have a post or a document where you detail your biblical understanding of discipline within the home? I’d be interested in reading your full argument, not to argue back but for the sake of my thinking.

    Thanks!
    Matt (mattn@nhcconline.com)

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