(Proverbs 13:24 KJV) He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.
Christians have become enlightened. We reject such clear teachings as this. In so doing we have joined the pagan who “hates” (8130) his children.
I am not sure that the problem is with the “rod” (7626). I don’t even think the problem is “chasteneth” (disciplines NASB) (4148). I think there is a lot of leeway in what a parent uses as a rod and the actual ways in which discipline is structured. Different people have different personalities. I am not saying that spanking is the only way to teach a child, although this verse and others certainly approve that as a method.
I think the real problem is in acting “betimes” (diligently NASB) (7836). It is in being consistent. I deal with parents on a regular basis who have children who are on their way to destruction. The parents profess love and how hard they try. They even shed tears. But nothing changes. Why? I am sure that each one would have different ways of explaining it but my answer is that they don’t care enough to take the consistent time to train up the child in the way he should go.
I speak from experience. There were long stretches of time in which I would have returned my son to the hospital for a refund or exchange. But we stuck with it. We did not let up. And eventually we began to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
So? Stick with it. Don’t give up. In time they can change.