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.
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…]
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
C.L. Dyck of Scita Scienda shares her thoughts in Hana Grace Williams and the Myth of My Happiness.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.