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What does the Bible say to do with a rebellious child? The scripture has much to say about rebellion for scriptural reference, word search rebellion, foolish, froward (KJV then compare). But in short love them, support them, proactively manage them, be an example of faith, patience, meekness, gentleness, kindness and longsuffering the teachings of Jesus and the Holy Spirit thru the apostles applies fully. Rebellious attitudes can lead to being froward if left unmanaged; the two may seem similar but are quite different. A rebellious (strong willed)child is explained quite well by Michael's post and as James points out we go into parenting mostly blind and must love unconditionally and lead by example. The word froward means habitually disobedient, someone who will choose bad choices even when right choices are easier. A froward child can be violent and cruel to others. They may be dishonest or lie even when they do not need too. They can be quite subtle, they may mask non- compliance and will take joy in the manipulation of others. They cross boundaries of respect and often steal or destroy property that is not theirs, and take pleasure and encourage others to do so also. The prisons and graveyards are filled with these types of behavior. That is why corporal punishment is considered as a means of combating these issues. These are the children that proverbs states a rod to the back will not kill them, but drive foolishness far from them. I raised two of four that were froward; today we say they make bad choices. My goals for them were to avoid an early death or imprisonment and instill a foundation of right and wrong. Freewill makes the choice to listen and learn, their choice, we cannot change that, but we can give them a foundation to influence their decision making processes. I only used corporal punishment a few times when they put themselves or others at risk, or would display a repetitive pattern of disrespect to those in power and authority(not myself, it is to be expected). Make no mistake it is the threat of this that is effective as actual prolonged use will harden them. That’s right you have to talk to them, reason with them and occupy them so they have little time to feed that rebellious attitude. You must also control outside (environmental) influence that may eat away at your authority or value foundation. I removed my children from public school and home schooled them all and put them to work fulltime at 13 years of ages. My goal was to teach them a work ethic and create a link between them and me outside of being the authority figure. I learned to play video games and taught them hunting and fishing to find common ground in which we were equals. I think they enjoyed beating me in video games a little too much. I also encouraged creativity they both displayed advanced understanding in mechanical skills so my yard looked like a junk yard of lawnmowers and dirt bikes. On bulk pick up day these two thought it was Christmas. It was hard not to nag, but they had a space to express themselves. I never prayed and fasted so much as when they were young, now they are in their 30’s and have families. I still pray but I see were taking them with me to help the needy or stopping to help people on our way to work, gave them a foundation of compassion towards others and a strong work ethic. It is not enough to just tell them right from wrong but we must live it, many are compassionate and understanding to others but not their own children. You may reach a point where you must be patient and long suffering of bad situations, were the choices are all bad or not ideal so as to not be shutout of being a positive influence avoid ostracizing and choices of finality you may be the only godly influence. Finally be strong in the Lord, seek guidance from God in specific situations as He knows what is best, and seek it through His word and through prayer and counselors. Maranatha
When we have children we have them not knowing how they are going to be. They may grow up very pliable and willing to follow right. But, they can also grow up as a rebel and resist doing what is right. Do we decide whether to have children or not based on what we know? No we do not, we go ahead and have them not knowing how they will turn out. It is the same with God. He will save any one who comes to him by faith and gets born again through the spirit. He does so even though they may live a sinful life and not love Him. But He never ceases to love us. Nothing can separate us from the Love of God once we have trusted Him to save us. We only have our children for a few formative years. After that they are completely Gods children if they have trusted Him as savior. Since Jesus paid the penalty for all sin when we accepted Him as our savior, He can not deny Himself, and He will not condemn us no matter what. We raised four children and none of them were perfect. They have to be trained. If we just let them live how ever they want to, we do them a great disservice. But if we treat them fairly, and let them know we love them no matter what, they might go through a time of rebellion, but will begin to take responsibility for their actions. Many times they just learn how to act by watching their parents. Good or bad. One of the most important things children watch is how their parents love each other. They learn from that many times more than from all other ways. But their are no guarantees that they will turn out good or bad.
The Bible tells us to train up a child in the way he/she should go, and when they become old, he/she will not depart from it. (Proverbs 22:6) Also, pray for that child that's rebellious, and he/she will come to the realization as to what must they do to be saved.
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