UNDERSTANDING CHRISTIAN DOMESTIC DISCIPLINE
Copyright © 2010 by Leah Kelley
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*** The material contained in this book is for informational purposes only. What the reader chooses to do with this information is his or her responsibility alone. ***
So… What’s the Big Fuss About?
What is Christian Domestic Discipline?
A Christian Domestic Discipline (CDD) marriage is a matrimonial bond set up as closely as possible in accordance with the Holy Scriptures. That is, the husband is the leader and authority in his household and the wife is his companion and helper. Sounds fine so far, right? And it mostly works fine so far, as well.
However, as it is with any marriage, conflicts inevitably arise. The thing that makes CDD marriage different AND causes a bit of an uproar among my readers is that in a CDD marriage, the husband as the head of the household has the means to enforce his authority through spanking and other means if necessary.
Okay… now I hear grumbling.
I have to say, I was at first astounded by the strong, often violent feelings the subject of Christian Domestic Discipline evoked. I even left the whole CDD world for a time due to threats that my children should be removed from my home because I dared to publicly write about it.
Christian Domestic Discipline has to be one of the most misunderstood and misreported subjects of all time. Not only are we attacked by groups we expected to disagree with us… such as feminists and the like… but we’ve been further maligned by groups we half expected to agree with us… like antifeminist Christians, and even some of those who practice a non-Christian form of domestic discipline.
Those who attack from a secular standpoint worry that we are spreading Domestic Violence, that we all have Stockholm Syndrome, or that we’re simply cloaking BDSM in Christian terms. Those who attack from a Christian standpoint claim we are heretics, feel we are maligning the Word of God, and swear there is no Biblical basis at all for Christian Domestic Discipline (not true).
In this book, I will attempt to answer all the questions I’ve been asked about Christian Domestic Discipline, as well as give you my reasons for believing Christian Domestic Discipline is Biblically sound and a viable lifestyle for today.
If you believe that Jesus was all sugar, spice, and everything nice, and consequently feel that Christian men should all behave as limp-wristed milksops, this book might rock your religious boat a little bit.
If, however, you can separate what modern culture has taught you from what the Bible actually teaches, you might just come to understand that the husband was sanctioned by the Lord to be the authority in a marriage, and that authority is not true authority without the means of enforcement.
Furthermore, you might come to see that discipline is strongly associated with love in the Bible, and that corporal punishment was Biblically sanctioned not just for kids, but for misbehaving adults as well. Finally, you might come to understand that by observing the Created Nature of human beings, one might learn a lot about God’s plan for marriage.
In the Beginning…
Adam plucked a berry from one of the garden shrubs and popped it in his mouth. As he savored its sweetness, he watched the animal he called “horse” nuzzle its mate. He smiled, feeling their joy in one another. The garden was alive with color and all its inhabitants, and the Lord would be along soon to talk with Adam. He cocked his head to the side as he cast one last glance at the horses. Something wasn’t quite right, Adam knew, but his joy was
not lessened. He knew the Lord would know what to do.
Adam was right. He yawned as he awakened from his deep sleep and sat bolt upright when he spied the other human standing alongside him. Coming quickly to his feet, he studied the smaller human so like himself, yet so different. He’d never seen anything so lovely. Her smile made his breath quicken, and he could hardly take his eyes from the soft curves of her body. With a grateful heart, he thanked the Lord for this help meet he’d been given.
He called his new mate “woman”, and she was perfect for him. She worked alongside him to tend the garden. She laughed with him and kept him company. And her delicate form was a veritable feast for his eyes.
I like to imagine what it might have been like for the first couple. We know from scripture that God never meant for Adam to be alone (Genesis 3:18). All the animals were brought before Adam to name, yet among them none was found suitable as a companion and help meet for the man. So God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam while He formed Eve from one of his ribs. When Adam awoke, we see he was pleased with this gift from God:
This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh;
she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.
Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother,
and shall cleave unto his wife, and they shall be one flesh…
The fact that he called her “bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh” says to me he loved her as himself already. In the creation account we see that she was created for two express reasons: to be a companion for Adam, and to be a help meet for him.
From this scripture alone we can tell a bit about the nature of man and woman. Man was not meant to be alone. He wasn’t created to do everything himself. He needs a woman to act as companion and help meet, to soften his rough edges, to bring joy and depth of meaning to his life. He is happiest serving in the role given to him by God… the benevolent leader of a loving wife.
It is important to understand that even before the curse Adam was in a position of authority. By simple definition of the word “helper” we can assume that Eve followed Adam’s lead. That Adam named Eve is another strong indication of his dominion over her according to Old Testament tradition. And we see that later, after the sin, it is ADAM, as the authority in the marriage, that God seeks out to question.
Woman, on the other hand, was created to emotionally and physically serve her mate. She has a nurturing spirit she needs to share with him. In her natural state, she is the willing follower of her husband and since she was created by God to serve in this capacity, she is happiest in this role.
We are given no indication in scripture how long Adam and Eve lived together in the Garden in perfect harmony, but we do know they were completely happy in their God-given roles… that is, the man being the leader and the woman the companion and follower.
Adam stormed from his dwelling, ignoring the grating voice of his wife that seemed to set his teeth on edge. He put his hands over his ears to block out her continued screeching as he strode toward the cave where he often went to escape Eve’s persistent nagging.
Ever since they’d been forced to leave the garden, his wife hadn’t been the same. Now he couldn’t please her no matter what he did. He looked around at the cold, hard walls of his cave and sighed. He’d rather dwell there than with the woman who never seemed to close her mouth.
He thought longingly of the home he and Eve had built. Though horribly sad to lose the daily companionship of the Lord, they’d still had each other, and they’d worked together to make a home. Eve had been scared and looked to Adam for protection. Still eager to please, she’d been much more pleasant in those days. However, as the days passed and she gained confidence, she’d become less inclined to please her husband. Adam didn’t know how he was going to live with her, but he couldn’t stand the thought of living without her.