Proverb 23:13,14, Withhold not correction from thy child; for if thou beatest him with the rod, he shall not die. Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell.
Related Proverb: Proverbs 13:24, He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.
Proverbs 23:14 is the parents authority from God to correct their child by beating him or her.
I use the word beat because that is what God calls it in His word.
You as a parent have authority and God expects you to use that authority. However, the authority is limited.
You are not to kill the child. And in order to not do that horrible thing, God limits what tool you can use to correct your child.
He prescribes a rod. As far as an implement is concerned he limits you to a rod in the correction of your child.
He also promises that if you limit yourself to a rod in accordance with his instruction then your child will not die.
As with any command of God, we exhibit faith when we obey.
He also gives the astounding promise to those who obey his word that correction of our children by the use of the proper tool will result in our children's deliverance from Hell.
Quite a promise by simply using a tool that God gives for the correction of children!
Let's look at some words in these verses
Beat: to strike repeatedly, to lay on repeated blows,
Rod: the shoot or long twig of any woody plant; a branch or the stem of a shrub, as a rod of hazel, birch, oak, or hickory (as in school days, school days, good old golden rule days, reading and writing and arithmetic, taught to the tune of the hickory stick)
Note the use of this tool is for a purpose, it is for correction. Nowhere in these proverbs does Solomon talk about punishment.
Show some examples of a rod: persimmon rod, crepe myrtle rod, bamboo shoot rod, mimosa rod, oak rod, red tip rod (also known as red top), yaupon rod, pyracantha rod.
Note the aerodynamic nature of the construction of the natural, God produced rod, its ability to travel to the designated target without interference.
Note the ease of control and its ability to deliver the exact amount of force desired. Note also that it will fit the big hand or the little hand. It will fit father's hand and well as mother's hand.
It is typical of man to invent substitutes for that which God gives to accomplish his purposes. God commanded Cain and Abel to bring a sacrifice which required shed blood.
God was specific. Cain thought otherwise. He brought the fruit of his hand.
So too we think that we can make a better tool for correction of our children, so we use all sorts of things instead of the God commanded rod!
His promise of deliverance from Hell for our children is in jeopardy when we make our own tools. What about these examples?
Show some examples of the wrong tool: A belt (hard to control and will wrap around and do damage to other areas of the body),
a dowell (not limber or lively, too brittle, will break and splinter, not a natural shoot),
a stick (too rigid, sharp corners that injure, not limber and may break),
a board (hard to control because it will turn in the hand, too rigid, may break bones),
a paddle (wimpy, won't do the job, garners no respect by the child, causes the child to laugh and ridicule your method, edges could break bones and cause damage),
your hand (this will hurt your hand and cause you pain, it is not the purpose of this correction to cause you pain)
Note also that this tool is to be a shoot, which may indicate that the rod ought to be new for each occasion of its use.
A shoot indicates freshness and limberness, a shoot is pliant, easy to bend. A new shoot for each use allows the correcting parent time to cool the emotions and plan the event rather then rushing in with a vengeful and punishing reason instead of a correcting reason.
A rod too easily available may be easily misused. Also the child is growing and needs a different size rod as he or she grows.
Method of Application? (a rod needs room to swing, therefore distance between the one applying the licks and the child should be the norm,
having the child bend over and grab his ankles separates the two nicely and keeps your hands off of the child, and keeps the child's hands away from the rod,
it also presents the rear end and only the rear end to the swift moves of the rod,
this stance also tightens the clothes over the rear end so the correcting job of the rod will be most effective)
Number of licks? Depends upon the child, not the offense, remember you are correcting, not punishing.
When to start using the rod? When disobedience is displayed.
When to stop using the rod? When voice obedience is achieved