Restrain your children

I Samuel 3:13 For I have told him that I will judge his house for ever for the iniquity which he knoweth; because his sons made themselves vile, and he restrained them not.

God has given you children. They are on loan to you. You are responsible to raise and train those children for the honor of the God of heaven. One of the issues that so many parents have is they do not teach their children to obey. Their children never learn the word “no!” Maybe they think it is cute when the children respond without respect to an adult. Perhaps the parents have all intentions to discipline their children but if they do not do so soon the child will have learned to do what you never intended for them to do.

By not restraining them you are releasing them. By not saying no you are saying yes. By letting it slide you are encouraging behavior that will soon embarrass you. See the trajectory they are on and stop it while they are young.

If you can train a pet surely you can train a child. It requires a great deal of work but is definitely worth it.

A sad story in the Bible is the story of Eli and his sons. Eli was the man of God. He was the main spiritual leader of an entire people. In the verse above you notice that God said Eli had not restrained his children.

Yet you will notice in this verse that he at least tried to talk to them.

I Samuel 3:22 Now Eli was very old, and heard all that his sons did unto all Israel; and how they lay with the women that assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. 23 And he said unto them, Why do ye such things? for I hear of your evil dealings by all this people. 24 Nay, my sons; for it is no good report that I hear: ye make the Lord’s people to transgress. 25 If one man sin against another, the judge shall judge him: but if a man sin against the Lord, who shall intreat for him? Notwithstanding they hearkened not unto the voice of their father, because the Lord would slay them.

Notice he had told them no. He told them it wasn’t good, that he was disappointed in their behavior. He gave them godly warnings.

None of that was good enough. Many young parents want to talk with their children when it is not yet time for such talks. You really don’t need to reason with a child before they have the use of reason. Teach them the word “no!” Do not give in to them just to satisfy them or keep them from screaming. Do not allow yourself to be manipulated.

Remember this, if you do not teach them the day will come when it will be too late. There will come a day when you can’t form them into the child they should be. While they are very small you can lovingly, kindly, tenderly, teach them obedience. Every day you waste brings you closer to a crisis you will hate.

Discipline will work. Notice the following verse:

Proverbs 19:25 Smite a scorner, and the simple will beware: And reprove one that hath understanding, and he will understand knowledge.

A spanking or discipline can be small if you start soon enough. If your child can learn then you tell him no and he will understand. This is obviously not to be abusive. It is tender love but with boundaries and guidelines for your child.

Discipline your child while there is still time. There are many verses that are abused and hated because they teach us to discipline, spank, say no to our children Proverbs 20:30, Proverbs 22:15.

Learning to respect you and authority has to do with an entire life and even their eternity. Society will discipline if you do not. The police will get involved if your child doesn’t learn to respect the rules. God will discipline if you fail. Sin has consequences. Raising children is one of the most important responsibilities we have been given.

Help your children avoid suffering by teaching and training them. Sin hurts and so you can help them learn truth.

I know you are frustrated. I know you want to discipline your child but seek their approval more than their good. Please take a minute to think about this

Photo by Allen Taylor on Unsplash

About the author

Austin Gardner is pastor of Vision Baptist Church in Alpharetta, GA. Previously he was church planting missionary in Peru for 20 years.
3 Responses
  1. Dustin Brown

    What a needed truth!!! If we don’t train our children there flesh will and we won’t like the results!!! As a dad this very Biblical article was a great help and encouragement to me in the area of disciplining and training my children.

  2. Justus Mize

    Favorite quote: “God has given you children. They are on loan to you.“
    I don’t tend to think of having kids as a loan from God, but that is the the truth.

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