Kathy Thile’s Arguments

“The Pearls believe that training is a separate thing from teaching and discipline. They start very early using a switch to inflict pain…to train babies to avoid things the parent wants the baby to avoid…just like a behavioral psychologist might use electric shocks and rewards to train rats to navigate a maze.

In my opinion it is repugnant and unbiblical because babies are human beings, made in the image of God, endowed by Him with far more mental and spiritual and emotional equipment and innate worth than animals have been given. In recognition of that, we glorify and respect God’s creation by dealing with human beings in accordance with these higher abilities–and that includes all human beings. Babies. The elderly. Prisoners. Slaves. The handicapped.

I don’t think the Bible is referring to behavioristic animal-style training when the word “train” is used (as in “train up a child in the way he should go”). The Pearls don’t make much of a biblical argument for their methods (unlike the Ezzos), but that one is certainly implied by the title of their book, and as I say, I just don’t think it’s supported by the Bible.”

Kathy Thile