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Training Children for God

(Proverbs 10:1; 15:5,10,12; 13:24; 19:18; 22:15,6; 19:13; 20:11; 23:13-16; 29:17)

Lesson 7 -- fourth quarter 2009
October 18, 2009

by Mark Roth
© Copyright 2009

Introductory questions to chew

What should be my motivation in disciplining another?

Is the "right" to discipline my child something I need to "earn"?

Am I as open to being trained as I am to doing the training?

How does God measure the success of my child training?

What should be my attitude toward those parents who train differently than I do?

What should be among our chief aims in child training?

Scattered through this collection of verses from Proverbs, I see these long-range objectives in child training:

By the way, why does God train us?

That's what it says in Spanish?!

Consulting my Spanish Reina-Valera 1960 Bible will at times give me a perspective quite different from what my English King James Version gives. Take Proverbs 19:18.

"Chasten thy son while there is hope, and let not thy soul spare for his crying."

"Castiga a tu hijo en tanto que hay esperanza; Mas no se apresure tu alma para destruirlo." ("Punish your son while there is hope; but don't let your soul hasten to destroy him.")

Quite a difference in the second section of the verse, eh?! Using the Spanish rendition, we could conclude that we shouldn't discipline in haste or we will ruin the child.

Also, having a hasty soul may mean being...

OK, you can pursue that further without additional input from me. Now take Proverbs 22:6.

"Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it."

"Instruye al niño en su camino, Y aun cuando fuere viejo no se apartará de él." ("Instruct the child in his way, and even when he be old....")

Now you're wondering why I didn't finish my translation. Well, I'll tell you why: the Spanish verbiage goes fuzzy at that point! What I left untranslated above ("no se apartará de él") can be translated -- correctly -- these two ways:

"...he will not depart from it."

"...it will not depart from him."

The first option clearly parallels the thought conveyed in the King James Version. But the second option changes the thrust of the promise!

So what do you think God is saying to us in that verse?

This concludes my comments based on the alternate lesson developed by Christian Light Publications. To read my comments on the passage for the International Bible Study, click here: Pleading for Mercy.

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