The saying “Spare the rod and you spoil the child” is no where in the Bible. However, the Texas Family Code provides that the following individuals are permitted to use corporal punishment for the reasonable discipline of a child:
- A parent or grandparent of the child
- A stepparent of the child who has the duty of control and reasonable discipline of the child; and
- An individual who is a guardian of the child and has the duty of control and reasonable discipline of the child.
If used, corporal punishment should be one of many tools used in love to discipline a child. While the cliché, “Spare the rod and you spoil the child” is not in the Bible, Proverbs does say, “ The rod and reproof give wisdom: but a child left to himself brings his mother to shame.” The Committee for Children provide an article, at http://psych.fullerton.edu/clindquist/dv/discipl.html discussing “Discipline vs. Abuse.” There is a checklist to help determine if an act is discipline or abuse. Another guide is found in Ephesians 6:4, “Fathers, provoke not your children to wrath.” If that is not enough direction, remember domestic or family violence is a crime and may result in a loss of parental rights and jail time.