Proverbs 19:18 says “Discipline your son while there is hope. And do not desire his death.” This verse is an imperative, unlike most of the verses in Proverbs, which are declarative sentences. The command, discipline your son, is a strong warning against parental passivity. A child guilty of doing wrong should be chastised in their early years while there is hope for them. To neglect such needed discipline may contribute to the child’s death. Death refers either to capital punishment under the Law (Deut. 21:18-21) or to the danger of natural consequences accompanying the child’s foolish behavior, in which he destroys himself. A child who is not disciplined but allowed to do as he or she pleases and have whatever they want will become an unruly person. Proverbs says that they will disgrace their Mother in 29:15; “The rod and reproof give wisdom, But a child who gets his own way brings shame to his mother.” “And now a word to you Fathers. Don’t make your children angry by the way you treat them. Rather, bring them up with the discipline and instruction approved by the Lord” (Eph 6:4; NLT). Both Mothers and Fathers are extremely important in a child’s life. Studies say children with involved fathers are:
More confident and less anxious in unfamiliar settings
Better able to deal with frustration
Better able to gain a sense of independence
More likely to become compassionate adults
More likely to have higher self-esteem
More likely to have higher grade-point averages
Fortunately as believers, we have a Heavenly Father who nurtures us. So, as we celebrate Father’s Day, let’s give thanks to the most important Father of all, our Heavenly Father.