Shannon’s Testimony and Plea to End Obedience-Based Christian Parenting

Shannon Evans pleas for an end to Obedience-Based Christian Parenting, especially for adopted children, in a very well written post. This is a good post to share with pro-spankers because she explains the danger of the mindset without condemning spankers. I realize that many of my followers are disappointed in this post and claiming that it does not go far enough. We have to understand that there is a time and place for baby steps. People rarely jump from pro-spanker to anti-spanker in moment of epiphany. Such a change is usually a long, arduous journey. Information taken in at each step of the way will either push them further along on the way or push them backwards. A blog post which condemns all spanking is often rejected and may even push them right back to their starting spot. It is clear from this post that the author has come a long way and is in danger of alienating many people she loves by posting this. I applaud her courage and passionate plea.

The Prince of Peace vs. The Prince of This World

A while back, a Christian pro-spanker said that I was doing the work of the devil after engaging in a discussion about why spanking/hitting children is neither Biblical nor from God.  When this person learned about my book, Gentle Firmness: Conveying the True Love of Jesus to Your Children Through His Example, he got even angrier and said I was from the evil one.  Others have accused me of twisting God’s Word in order to fit my own beliefs about not inflicting pain on children in order to “discipline” them.  They quote the same verses from Proverbs at me about using the rod to “discipline” children.  They’re so certain that these verses must be taken literally despite the original Hebrew meanings showing that all of the rod verses that seem to advocate spanking/hitting children were never meant to be taken literally (see my series entitled “Spanking is NOT God’s Will” or my book for more info on how to accurately interpret the “rod” verses), that they quickly become accusatory and insulting.  One must ask, “Who is really driving these people?”

It turns out that I am in awesome company when it comes to being accused of being from satan when it comes to teaching and promoting peace, love, mercy, forgiveness, and healing.  [Read more…]

John Rosemond: Pro-Spanker?

Conservative  Christian, John Rosemond  “is known for his old-fashioned, Bible-based parenting philosophy and approach” according to Wikipedia.  Because of this, I found was very interested to find out that he does not advocate spanking.  While I do not recommend his parenting advice which I find very harsh and punitive,  I decided to share this information on my blog for the following 2 reasons:

1) If you believe that spanking is Biblically mandated you might be interested to know that John Rosemond disagrees with you on that point.

2) If  you do not spank and someone is trying to convince you that it is Biblically mandated, you can now refer them to well known author John Rosemond.

Note that John Rosemond does not condemn spanking and will defend it from those who argue against it, but he says very clearly in his FAQ that he does not advocate for spanking, does not find it very effective and does not believe that it is Biblically mandated.  He does not go into much detail about how he came to that conclusion, so here is an in depth examination of The Biblical Rod.

Discussing Tim Challies’ Reviews

Recovering Grace promotes Tim Challies’ review of Created To Be His Help Meet. Also, someone brings up his review of To Train Up A Child in the comments and discussion of the Pearls ensues which might be of interest to my readers.

 

Challies reviews TTUAC

After his review of Created To Be His Help Meet a few days ago, Tim Challies has decided to review To Train Up A Child, which he does in 2 parts:

Tim Challies Review of To Train Up A Child Part 1 in which he looks at training versus discipline, and his concerns with Pearl’s training.

Tim Challies Review of To Train Up A Child Part 2 in which he looks at the innocent child, the redemptive rod, and gives his conclusion.

A Complementarian’s Concerns With Created To Be His Help Meet

Complementarian Tim Challies analyses Debi Pearl’s book, Created To Be His Help Meet and points out his concerns with the teachings therein.

Part 1 looks at the harsh and critical spirit and the foolish counsel.

Part 2 looks at “poor theology, poor use of Scripture and far too little gospel.”

This is an excellent review to share with complementarians.

More about Elizabeth Esther and Michael Pearl

Elizabeth Esther continues to share about her visit on the Anderson Show with Sitting on the couch with Michael Pearl. In this post she shares one clip from the show and shares the rest in the previous post.  We are still hoping to find a video of the entire show which has not yet run in Los Angeles.  I heard that will run in the Los Angeles area Monday, Dec 5 at 4pm on Fox 11, which begs the question, when will the Monday episode run?

 

 

An Interview with Elizabeth Esther

BlogHer Network Interviews Elizabeth Esther about her appearance with Michael Pearl on Anderson Cooper’s daytime Talk Show today (Monday for Los Angeles Viewers).

Many bloggers are promoting this episode:

Elizabeth Esther Faces Michael Pearl On Anderson by Free By His Grace

Keeping Up with Michael Pearl: Interview on Anderson (Cooper’s) Talk Show TODAY (and Pearl’s appearance on Dr. Drew And AC360 and in the NYT….) by Under Much Grace.  (I am grateful for her kind words about this site).

Also, Under Much Grace shares about another Anderson 360 episode from CNN which aired on October 25 which I seem to have missed.  Anyway, the transcript she shares has things in it I had not seen, namely an update about the Willams.

Here is CNN’s Anderson Cooper’s Interview with Michael Pearl (Part II: August 2011)

and here is Michael Pearl’s Interview with Dr. Drew on CNN October 2011 both by Under Much Grace

Speaking of Under Much Grace, she has posted an index to her Why Good People Make Dangerous Choices (Pondering Michael Pearl and Lydia Schatz) series.

Elizabeth Esther Shares About Pearl

Elizabeth Esther shares about her experience taping Anderson Cooper’s New Daytime Talk Show with Michael Pearl in My thoughts on @Anderson show airing tomorrow: speaking imperfectly is better than remaining silent #NoMoreDeadKids.

She also gives an important reminder:

The show airs on network television (not cable! not CNN!) tomorrow. To check local listings, go here and find out when it’s on in YOUR area.

updated: if you’re in Southern California, the show has been bumped to air on Monday due to Pac-12 coverage. But clips from the show will be available online at www.andersoncooper.com . Since I have to wait until Monday to watch the whole thing, I’ll be relying on all of you to email me/FB/tweet me your feedback. :)

Elizabeth Esther on Anderson

Elizabeth Esther will be appearing on Anderson Cooper’s new daytime talk show (on FOX) with Michael Pearl this Friday (Dec 2, 2011) and she writes about it here, My appearance on Anderson Cooper’s daytime talk show airs this Friday, Dec. 2nd #NoMoreDeadKids.  She includes a link to find out where and when you can watch it in your area. And here is a promo for the show.

Here is another recent post where she explains why many people follow Pearls’ teachings: Seductive promise of perfectly happy, obedient children feeds abuse.

The Fruit of Sheltered, Controlled Homeschoolers

Reb Bradley has a long and very informative article about mistakes he and other sheltering and controlling Christian homeschooling parents have made in Exposing Major Blind Spots of Homeschoolers.

For more information about Reb Bradley’s teachings, please see the comments below as well as this post.

 

 

Positive Discipline

Kirk Martin of Calm Christian Parenting asks Is this really defiance? What do YOU think?  (Note:  the comments show that Kirk Martin does not condemn spanking which makes this post a good one to share with pro-spankers)

Along similar lines but for younger children, Pearl in Oyster (PIO) continues her 52 Tool Cards with Teach Children What to Do.

More Thoughts About Hana Williams

Kathy Cassel of Cassel Crew explains her concerns with To Train Up A Child in (How Not) To Train Up a Child.  Note that she does believe in spanking but more as a last resort than as a first and/or only tool.

Professor Curtis Hutt of the University of Nebraska shares his view concerning the ongoing debate about violence against children on Samuel Martin’s Blog.

Cybersattva on Pearl Laughing

Cybersattva responds to Michael Pearl’s comments on Facebook (from March 2010) in Stepping Outside of TTUAC.

An Email From NGJ

Patrick Morgan, who writes the  Cybersattva Blog, wrote an email to No Greater Joy Ministries about his concerns with To Train Up A Child.  He received a reply from the Assistant General Manager which he posts along with his commentary. Note that he adds commentary in the comments.

Hildebrant’s Word Study of Proverbs 22:6a “To Train Up A Child.”

Here is a link to Ted Hildebrant’s article in the Grace Theological Journal 9.1 (1988) 3-19,  Proverbs 22:6a; To Train Up A Child? which analyses what “To Train Up A Child” really means.

Here is a short quote from the intro:

Careful consideration of lexical and contextual factors suggests that “train up a child in the way he should go” needs to be reexamined. The verb “to train” really refers to a bestowal of status and responsibility.  The noun translated “child” denotes the status of a late adolescent rather than a child.  “In the way he should go” is best understood as “according to what is expected.”   The original intent then of this verse addresses a late adolescent’s entrance into his place in adult society.

As he did not study the word for Rod, this article does not change his ideas about spanking. He does, however, come to the conclusion that the verse does not advocate early childhood training.   He also reminds us that it is a Proverb, not a promise, which is something to keep in mind.

His final conclusion is this:

The parent must not violate the adolescent’s personhood by authoritarian domination, permissive allowance of immaturity, or overprotection from the consequences of his actions.

I must make note of the fact that his Hebrew words were transliterated Right to Left so that they read, “backwards” for us. If you want to read a better version of this article, you may read it here, but you will have to subscribe to the site first.

TTUAC and Child Abuse

Robin of Heart of Wisdom has a nice synopsis of the Dangers of the Pearls’ teachings in Pearl’s To Train Up A Child And Child Abuse. This is a good post for sharing as it contains the Action News Report as well as quotes from TTUAC and a lot of links for further study.

REAL Parenting Joy

PfamilyGal expresses her concerns about the Pearls’ teachings in REAL Parenting Joy.

Does God Want Us To Break Their Wills?

Elizabeth  Esther has  a post which discusses the idea that Even God Does Not Break Our Will.

Along the same lines, The Wartburg Watch has reposted a letter from Bob Dixon explaining Why He Finally Left Sovereign Grace Ministries After 30 years.

Spanking Infants???

Elizabeth Esther posted about the 20/20 exposé of abuse in some IBF churches and interprets Pastor Brian Fuller’s remarks.  She explains the teaching of first time obedience  and how common the spanking of infants really in these churches. By the way, some of the comments of this blog post seem to have inside information in them.

Also, I want to make it clear that  not all Independent Fundamental Baptist Churches have abusive teachings.  I am a member of an Independent Fundamental Baptist Church which does not.  The pastor often reminds us that salvation is by faith in Jesus and what He did alone and you cannot add anything to that.  He reminds us that saying a prayer or baptism or anything else will not save you, you are saved by believing that what Jesus said and did is true.  They do believe in corporal punishment but I have never heard of anyone there spanking an infant or using an implement.  While they might say that they believe in wifely submission, what I see looks more like mutual submission.   I see no signs of the patriarchal movement, most of the women in that church wear pants.  They also cut and dye their hair and nobody says a word about it.  Women work outside the home and girls are expected to go to college.  On top of that, many in  the congregation uses public schools.  So, I don’t know how extensive the abuse in IFB churches is but I believe that churches need to be considered on a church by church basis.  After all, they are independent.

Kidney Damage and The Pearl Method

Cindy, of Under Much Grace, explains exactly what Rhabdomyolosis is in, How Do We Track Kidney Failure and Kidney Damage in Children Who Are Trained Using the Pearl Method? She explains that kidney damage is permanent and wonders how many children are living with a chronic yet undiagnosed condition in this important and informative post.

Also, don’t miss this internet radio show about the same topic.

 

Meanwhile, the Schatz trial has been scheduled and both the Chico Enterprise Record and the Paradise Post are running the following story which I will paste here for permanence.

By RYAN OLSON – Staff Writer
Posted: 03/31/2011 12:00:00 AM PDT

OROVILLE — After a couple of postponements, a trial is ready to proceed in the case of a Paradise couple charged with allegedly whipping their adopted daughter to death and torturing another.

Attorneys representing Elizabeth and Kevin Schatz told Butte County Superior Court Judge Kristen Lucena they were ready to begin the trial on April 11.

The trial was initially set to begin in November, but was delayed so attorneys could review thousands of pages of evidence.

A second date for February was set aside in favor the April 11 date.

During Wednesday’s trial readiness conference, Lucena determined the trial would take place in her courtroom.

The prosecution alleges Elizabeth and Kevin Schatz used a length of quarter-inch plumber’s supply line to beat adopted daughters Lydia Schatz, 7, and Zariah Schatz, then 11, during separate “Biblical chastisements” on Feb. 4 and 5, 2010.

Lydia Schatz was taken to Feather River Hospital after the mother reported to 9-1-1 that she had stopped breathing. Zariah Schatz arrived at a Sacramento hospital in critical condition with whip-like marks before recovering.

The Schatzes have pleaded not guilty to charges of murder, torture involving great bodily injury and misdemeanor child abuse. If convicted, each could face a maximum sentence of two life terms in prison.

Before the trial date, there will be an April 8 hearing for motions that should be considered before a jury is selected.

At that time, the defense will
have an opportunity to respond to Butte County District Attorney Mike Ramsey’s recent request to include hearsay evidence based on out-of-court statements from Zariah Schatz.

While Zariah Schatz will be called to testify, Ramsey said outside of court that she had also spoken to police and medical personnel after her sister’s death.

Staff writer Ryan Olson can be reached at 896-7763 or rolson@chicoer.com.

THE CASE: On Feb. 4 and 5, 2010, Elizabeth and Kevin Schatz of Paradise allegedly used a whip-like instrument to discipline two adopted daughters in separate incidents. The 7-year-old daughter stopped breathing and subsequently died from her injuries. The 11-year-old daughter suffered serious injuries but recovered.

THE CHARGES: Both parents face counts of murder, torture involving great bodily injury and misdemeanor child abuse.

Why Do People Blame the Pearls?

This post by Elizabeth Esther was written in Feb of 2010 as a response to the Schatz Tragedy.  It is a great post for sharing as it contains a careful explanation of the Pearls’ teachings and how they relate to Lydia’s death as well as her own personal testimony. A link to this post can also be found on In Depth Analysis of Pearl’s Teachings.

Positive Safety Training

The Virginia Is For Mothers blog has a nice post about Positive Safety Training.  Apparently she is also teaching her young one to cook.  She compares and contrasts her method of safety training with Pearl’s method.

TTUAC: The Good, The Bad and The Shocking

Elizabeth, at Virginia Is For Mothers, reviews To Train Up A Child. In part 1 she shares her overall reaction which is mixed, and then what she found Good and Helpful about the book. I agree that there are some good and helpful messages in that book. To say otherwise is to put up a wall between us and those who are so taken by the good that they downplay the bad or don’t see it at all. There is a lot of good and that is what makes the book so dangerous. Nobody would eat a bitter tasting poison, it needs to be mixed with honey if anyone is going to eat it. And yes, this is is a very good honey.

But Elizabeth is not fooled. She says:

Here’s what I think about To Train Up A Child: SIGH….these people are such a mixed bag of normalcy and wisdom with a whole lot of weird thrown in. It takes a lot of concentration to weed through the information and advice to find pieces that I think are reasonable and biblical. Once again, I did glean some encouragement and reminders to do what I already believe in doing. So, I’m going to start with that and later write about the (many) parts of the book that had me raising my eyebrows, cringing and picking my jaw up off the floor.

Which brings us to Part 2 in which she reminds people not to fall into the error of relying to heavily on one parenting method and then shares what she found Weird, Harsh and Downright Shocking.  She includes plenty of quotes to back up her conclusions.  I’m glad that she is participating in warning people about this book.

Mixed feelings about Created To Be His Help Meet

Elizabeth, at Virginia Is For Mothers, reviews Created To Be His Help Meet. While she got a lot of positive things out of it, she has some concerns.  I am linking to this post for 2 reasons.

1) This is a good review to share with people who got a lot out of the book and are wondering what could possibly be wrong with it.  If you share a very negative review with them, they will likely be resistant to the message therein.  This review brings up concerns from someone who, for the most part, liked the book.

2) She is interested to know what others got out of it.   I assume that she will find her way here and may be interested in the other reviews which I have collected.

By the way, she asks what we think about the allegation that Bathsheba can be blamed for enticing King David by bathing on her roof. The roof in those days was what our patios are today, it was probably enclosed and she probably did not expect anyone to be able to see her. I’m not sure if that was the usual custom or not. Also, the Bible says that it was the time when Kings go to war. I have heard many sermons teach that King David had no business in the palace at all because he was supposed to be at war leading his men. It seems to me that she thought that all the men were at war and would not be spying on her. But even if she were trying to entice him, the fault would still be his for not looking away and resisting. We can look at Joseph in his encounter with Potiphar’s wife to see how God expects a man to react to temptation.

Series about Vision Forum

Sue Talbert at A Mother’s Heart Blog is writing a very interesting series called Vision Forum, Patriarchy and FLDS, Oh My!

In part 1 she explains how she came to find Vision Forum and read one of their books. She starts describing some objections to their teachings.

In Part 2 she expands on their teachings that women should not go to college or work outside the house (or from the house) and compares that to the FLDS as well as the taliban.

In Part 3 she discusses Bill Gothard and his teachings and how they relate to Vision Forum.

In Part 4 she begins to analyze problems with their teachings. She starts with Clothing / Modesty.

In Part 5 she discusses Reproduction / Quiverfull and the fact that they discourage adoption.

In part 6 she takes a look at their Politics and how they are working to create an Army For God. She also mentions child rearing, perfect obedience of children and wives and the Pearls’ teachings.

In Part 7, She explains Patriarchy and their teachings on Marriage and Wife Only Submission.

In Part 8 she concludes her series by looking at whether the group is Christian or heretical, what draws people to join such a group and her reason for writing the series.

Enduring Sound Doctrine

The pastor of Calvary Baptist Church of Temecula says in a post called, Enduring Sound Doctrine:

One writer who started out with some fairly sound material on raising children but has moved subtly away from sound doctrine is Michael Pearl.  I have recently removed all of his material from my personal library and from the church library because of the misguided nature of what he’s lately been teaching.  After some research, I found a number of serious errors in his teachings.

Personally, I do not believe that Mr. Pearl’s doctrine has changed much over the years.  It’s just that the more he writes, the more his doctrine is exposed.

Here are two quotes from his first book, To Train Up A Child, which I feel show some rather questionable doctrine:

The guilt burdened soul cries out for the lashes and nails of justice. Your child cannot yet understand that the Creator has been lashed and nailed in his place. Only the rod of correction can preserve his soul until the day of moral dawning.

The parent holds in his hand (in the form of a little switch) the power to absolve the child of guilt, cleanse his soul, instruct his spirit, strengthen his resolve, and give him a fresh start through a confidence that all indebtedness is paid.

Of course, there are many other quotes from that book which show some very questionable child raising advice. For more analysis of the Pearls’ doctrine, please see these posts as well as the Parenting in the Name of God series.

Unstringing the Pearls: A Critical Pastoral Assessment

Unstringing the Pearls: A Critical Pastoral Assessment is a warning from a pastor to his church, updated from a 2006 email. Since this pastor recommends Tripp, this is obviously another argument from someone who promotes spanking and will be tagged appropriately.

More adoption outrage

The Riggs family is also taking Mr. Pearl to task for his comments about adoption in the 2nd part of today’s blog post. They are commenting on Mr. Pearl’s blog.  I can’t help but wonder what his reply will be.  I have yet to see him to apologize or retract a statement.

Proof that Mr. Riggs believes in spanking: http://www.brentriggsblog.com/2010/01/parenting-in-2010

Fundamental Baptist Warns Against NGJ

David Cloud of Fundamental Baptist Information Service has updated his Warning Against No Great Joy Ministries. While he agrees with a lot of what the Pearls teach, he has some serious reservations:

1 ) Exalting the family over the church.
2 ) Sinless Perfection
3 ) Michael Pearl’s duplicitous dealings with the author
4 ) The teaching that Jesus became a sinner (!)

He then includes some testimonies of people who have written to him in response to his previous writings. That is where you will find some discussion of Rebekah Pearl and her dreams.