Tuesday, 19 May 2020

Proverbs 19.18

Discipline your children while there is hope.
Otherwise you will ruin their lives. 19.18

God’s Word tells us that all discipline is necessary for training toward righteousness. No one likes to be disciplined or to give discipline. The Bible tells us whenever God disciplines his children it is always done out of love even the discipline is painful. The word “discipline” is given as a command (Proverbs 19.18). It is not a suggestion but a command from God for parents to discipline our children with love. What is discipline? To disciple a child is to teach, correct and to punish to improve wrong behaviour. Discipline is also to give instruction to our children. It can be informal or formal instruction. The instruction often focuses on warning of consequences for bad behaviour. Solomon is giving a command for parents to disciple our children to walk in Godly ways.

The stress is the need for wise and loving discipline in the home. I believe many problems we face today in the society can be traced largely to the lack of discipline in the home. Certainly, there are many other problems in the home, broken families; permissive parents; and many children grow up without boundaries and supervision. The Bible is very clear God commands parents to discipline their children. Discipline is the responsibility of parents.

How long, O simple ones, will you love being simple?
How long will scoffers delight in their scoffing
and fools hate knowledge? Pro. 1.11 ESV

In this verse, Solomon deals with three types of children:

  1. The Simpleton has nothing to do with intelligence but describes the child who is young, gullible and naïve. They tend to believe everything. They are young and unable to discern from right and wrong. (Pro. 14.15)
  2. Scoffers or mockers are what we call “Smart Alecs” who think they have all the answers. They will not listen and are rebellious. They have made up their minds. Whatever their parents tell them falls on deaf ears.
    (Pro. 15.12; 9.7-8)
  3. Fools – if parents fail to get across to the scoffers or mockers, they will become fools and there is no hope for fools. (Pro. 1.22; 14.19)
    Proverbs 19.18 “Discipline your children while there is hope”. Discipline cannot be given evenly with all your children because every child is so different. There is timing too to carry out discipline. “While there is hope” or when the child is still young, it is easier to train them from birth. If the child has committed an offence or act that calls for discipline, don’t threatens the child, “wait till your daddy or mommy comes home”, most effective discipline should be done as soon as possible with love and firmness. The child needs to know the reason for his discipline. The rod is to inflict pain on the child but not to abuse or injure or damage the child. The discipline by using spanking is to make it stings (painful).

    Those who spare the rod of discipline hate their children.
    Those who love their children care enough to discipline them. Pro. 13.24
    Don’t fail to discipline your children.
    The rod of punishment won’t kill them.
    Physical discipline
    may well save them from death. Pro. 23.13.14


    Love uses the rod; hate spares the rod. Solomon commands parents to use the rod. The word spare is to withhold, refrain or to keep from doing something. What Solomon wants to emphasise is this, when the child needed firm and loving discipling and you withhold it, you don’t really love the child. You are easy-going, he cannot know his boundaries. There is room for the use of the rod at appropriate times and situations.
    The earlier we instil discipline and instruction on our children, the lesser will be needed when they grow older. Below are simple but workable ways to give discipline and instructions.
  4. Show and tell them what is right and wrong.
  5. Set consistent and clear boundaries or rules to follow.
  6. Don’t discipline when you are angry.
  7. Make time to hear them out.
  8. Give them your attention.
  9. Reward them for being good.
  10. Know when not to respond.

Why do we discipline our children? Solomon give us these goals for discipline.

Direct your children onto the right path,
and when they are older, they will not leave it. 22.6
To discipline a child produces wisdom,
but a mother is disgraced by an undisciplined child. 29.15
Discipline your children, and they will give you peace of mind
and will make your heart glad. 29.17

God is more interested in building our character than He is in our comfort. I believe all of us parents want our children to grow up to be a balanced person, that they be healthy and wise; they be honest and productive citizens where they live. This can be a reality when we dispense discipline while they are still young. Our children will be proud of us as parents. Our grandchildren will bring great joy and satisfaction to us in old age.

Prayer for today

O God, like a mother who comforts her children, You sustain, nurture and strengthen us; like a father who cares for his children, you look upon us with compassion and goodness. Thank you for your great love and sacrifice so that we might have life abundantly. Forgive us for when we don’t thank you enough, for who You are, for all that You do, for all that You’ve given.

Lord, we humbly confess to you our negligence in our past where we failed to discipline our children. We beg you to forgive us for some of our children already past the point of hope. We plead for mercy that you will have us to recover the lost opportunity. We thank You, there is always hope in You. Help us to take heed of your command to discipline our children when they are still young, so when they grow up they will not depart from You.

Lord, we need You. Give us grace each day to love our children and see them with your eyes. Help us to find in Your Word the wisdom we need to lead our kids well and to train them diligently. We are so thankful we don’t have to rely on our own wisdom to parent our children. Thank you for the guidance, discernment and truth your Holy Spirit provides. Help us live in utter dependence on you in all things, particularly in our parenting. Renew our spirits, and fill us with your peace and joy. We love you, We need you today and every day.

In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Pastor Isaac Yim

xxx

每日灵粮
19/5/20
作者:严以撒牧师
箴言19:18

趁有指望,管教你的儿子;你的心不可任他死亡。

上帝的道告诉我们,所有纪律和管教都是塑造我们朝向正义的必要条件。我们都不喜爱被管教或管教别人。圣经告诉我们,每当神管教祂的儿女时,即使很严厉,总是出于爱。箴言19:18的“管教”是一个命令。这不是上帝的建议,而是上帝的命令,父母要用爱来管教自己的孩子。管教是什么?管教孩子包括教导,纠正和惩罚以改善他的错误。管教也有指导孩子的用意。这种指导主要是警告关于不良行为的后果。所罗门命令父母管教自己的孩子,保守孩子走在正道上。

这里所强调的是一个家需要有带智慧和慈爱的管教。我相信我们今天社会面临的许多问题在很大程度上可以归因于家庭管教的缺乏。当然,家庭中还有许多其他问题,如家庭破裂、过度宽容的父母、还有许多孩子在不受限制和监督的情况下长大。圣经很清楚记载上帝命令父母管教自己的孩子。管教是父母的责任。

箴言1:22 你们愚昧人喜爱愚昧,亵慢人喜欢亵慢,愚顽人恨恶知识,要到几时呢?

所罗门在此段经文论到三种孩子:

  1. 愚昧人 – 愚昧与智力无关,但是用于描述一个年轻,轻易上当和幼稚的孩子。他们轻易相信一切事情。他们年轻,无法分辨是非。(箴言14:15)
  2. 亵慢人 – 亵慢/嘲笑者是所谓自作聪明的人,他们认为自己对万事都有答案。他们不听从意见却喜爱造反。他们决定不考虑别人的提议。他们对父母的劝勉总是置若罔闻、视而不见。(箴言15:12;9:7~8)
  3. 愚顽人–如果父母失败把亵慢的孩子纠正,孩子们就将成为了愚顽人,这样就毫无希望了。(箴言1:22; 14:19)

箴言19:18“趁有指望,管教你的儿子”。每个孩子都不一样,因此我们不能单采用同一个管教方法来对待他们。管教也需要合适时间。 “趁有指望”或孩子还小的时候,从孩子出世就开始训练是较容易的。当孩子犯错时,不要威胁孩子说“等到你爸/妈回来就怎么样”,最有效的管教法应该要即时、以爱和稳重施行。孩子必须知道自己受管教的原因。管教的“杖”是要给孩子感受到错误带来的痛,而不是虐待或伤害孩子。使用“打屁股”来管教孩子不过是使孩子感到刺痛的感。

箴言13:24 不忍用杖打儿子的,是恨恶他;疼爱儿子的,随时管教。

箴言23:13~14
不可不管教孩童;你用杖打他,他必不至於死。
你要用杖打他,就可以救他的灵魂免下阴间。

疼爱孩子就必须用杖管教;恨恶孩子的不忍用杖管教。所罗门命令父母使用杖。“不忍用”指的是保留,克制或不做某事。所罗门所强调的是,当孩子需要坚定而充满爱心的管教而父母却不忍心管教时,父母就不真的爱孩子。父母随和,孩子就因此不晓得孩子的界限。在适当的时间和情况下,仍有使用杖的必要。

我们对孩子灌输管教和指导的时间越早,他们长大后需受管教的时刻就越少。以下是提供孩子管教和指导的一些简单可行的方法。

  1. 告诉他们对与错并成为他们的好版样。
  2. 设立明确和一致的界限规则要求他们遵守。
  3. 父母生气时不要管教他们。
  4. 花些时间聆听他们的感触、感想。
  5. 把专注力给予他们。
  6. 孩子们行为好的时候奖励他们。
  7. 知道何时不该回应。

我们为何要管教我们的孩子?所罗门给我们管教孩子的最终目的。
箴言22:6 教养孩童,使他走当行的道,就是到老他也不偏离。
箴言29:15 杖打和责备能加增智慧;放纵的儿子使母亲羞愧。
箴言29:17 管教你的儿子,他就使你得安息,也必使你心里喜乐。

上帝更愿塑造我们的品格过于让我们舒服。我相信我们所有父母都希望我们的孩子长大成为一个平衡、健康、聪明、诚实和对社会有贡献的公民。如果我们从小就管教孩子,这些都能够实现。我们的孩子将为我们父母感到自豪。我们的孙子将给我们带来极大的欢乐和满足。

今天的祷告

上帝啊,就像一个安慰孩子的母亲一样,祢维持,养育并是我们刚强;就像一个照顾孩子的父亲一样,祢充满同情心和善良看顾我们。感谢祢伟大爱和牺牲,以便我们过一个丰盛生命。我们没有感谢祢、没有感谢祢所做的一切、没有感谢祢所赐的一切,求主原谅我们。

主啊,我们谦卑地向祢承认我们过去对孩子管教方面的疏忽。我们恳求祢原谅我们,因为我们的一些孩子似乎已经没有指望了。我们恳求祢让我们再次拥有所失去的机会。我们感谢祢,在祢里面总是有盼望。帮助我们顺服祢的命令,在孩子小的时候管教他们,使他们长大后不会离开祢。

主啊,我们需要祢。赐给我们恩典爱我们的孩子,使我们每天能够用祢的角度看待他们。帮助我们在祢的话语中找到我们需要的智慧,带领我们的孩子们,好好地训练他们。我们非常感恩,我们不必依靠自己的智慧来养育孩子。感谢祢的圣灵提供的指导,分辨力和真理。帮助我们在所有事情上都完全依赖祢,尤其是在我们为人父母方面。更新我们的灵,使我们充满平安与喜乐。我们爱祢,我们每天都需要祢。

奉主耶稣的名,阿门

以撒牧师

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