Best Books for Christian Parents
By Mark Benedict
When it comes to parenting, I truly believe Christian parents need the help of books and materials produced by men and women of God. The current flood of misinformation and propaganda has been whittling away at the institution of the family with devastating effects. The best books for Christian parents are books that faithfully hold to the principles in God’s Word.
Parents with young children wondering if they should spank their children will be greatly encouraged by Detective Robert Surgenor’s book No Fear: A Police Officer’s Perspective. This book contains carefully gathered statistics which prove what most of you already knew was true. Sparing the rod does lead to spoiled children! You skeptics may want to read the first hand information he has collected on the problems caused by ineffective parenting.
On the principles and mechanics of training children, I heartily recommend as one of the best I have read on the subject, Richard Fugate’s book called “What the Bible says about …Child Training.” This book is published by Aletheia Publishers, Inc, PO Box 3153, Tempe, AZ, 85280.
I recommend parents read it for some very practical scriptural instructions on raising children. I wish Sallie and I had read this book years ago, since it would have eliminated much of the trial and error learning that we experienced with our two children. Even today, I found the book especially helpful, particularly in view of the humanistic teachings now being circulated in the public school systems. Here are just a few passages from this excellent tool for parents:
“Parental authority delegates to parents the right to rule the children under their control. No other institution or person has rulership rights over children. Neither society, school personnel, nosy individuals, nor even other institutions have any authority over children. The parents’ power over their children is accountable to government only through God’s laws concerning incest, injury, and murder. Parents are directly responsible to God for any misuse of their authority. There are no such thing as “child rights” sanctioned by the Word of God. The child has only the God-given right to be raised by his parents without the intervention of any other institution.”
“When a government begins to misuse its authority it goes beyond its boundaries and begins to undermine parental authority. The tendency then is to make the child responsible to the state rather than to the parents. Historically this has occurred many times with tragic results. The governments of such nations as Sparta, Hitler’s Germany , and Communist Russia have usurped the parents role.” Page 31-32
“Raising a child is not training. Plants and animals are raised. To raise something means to grow it. To raise a child would only consist of feeding, clothing, and protecting him from destruction until he reaches physical maturity. While it is true today that most parents are only “raising” their children, raising does not constitute the training of the soul that God intends.”
“If you desire for your child to become obedient and willing to accept God’s standards as his own, you will have to utilize the process that God has designed to obtain these results. Biblical child training produces a quality character much different than would have developed had the child been left alone to grow up according to his own nature. God’s Word commands parents specifically to so alter the nature of their children.” Page 64-65
“As a parent you are always training your child, even if you are not teaching him according to God’s standards. Simply because you are in the position of rulership, your child will receive his direction from you — right or wrong. You set the standards for his acceptable conduct either by what you allow (training by default) or by what you intentionally teach (overt negative training).”
“If a child is rude, inconsiderate, and selfish, he has been trained to be that way. If a child is lazy and sloppy or is disrespectful and a troublemaker, he has been trained that way. Parents do not intentionally train their children to reflect these negative characteristics; yet it is very easy to train a child in these undesirable behavior patterns because they reinforce his natural inclinations.”
“When parents simply do nothing, the child is trained to think that whatever he wants to do is all right. This inaction is negative training by default.” Page 72.
If you’re new to parenting you won’t go wrong to start your library with this one. Write the publisher or you can order through The Berean Call, an excellent discernment ministry with newsletters addressing many contemporary Christian issues. The late author, Dave Hunt and the Berean Call editor, T.A. McMahon, point out the problems with many Christian “Fad Doctrines” forcefully, yet in a spirit of Christian love. You’ll find many excellent books and tapes not normally available in bookstores, to include “What the Bible Teaches …About Child Training.” Their newsletter is free. I read it cover to cover. Visit the website at http://www.thebereancall.org