A few days ago I talked about the need for fathers who discipline their boys. I want to highlight that quality for one more day, because I think that this point is perhaps the most significant of all I’ve covered. After all, the fundamental problem of a boy is his sin nature. He must be corrected, lest he perish forever. Now, someone could counter that he must have love, and I can’t quarrel with that. But my point is this: boys desperately need discipline. They simply have to learn that they are accountable. They cannot do as they like. They cannot live as they like. They must conform to right standards, and this will always involve a certain breaking of the will. Not a brutal or total breaking, mind you, but rather one that disciplines and restores.
In my life, I can think of several men I know who did not have fathers to discipline them and who were greatly affected by this absence of a discipliner. This is not to say that they learned no concept of discipline, for they did, from their mother. But you can see the inadequacy of this training in them. Boys who live without the fear of disobeying dad simply are less concerned with obedience, because they didn’t have to be growing up. When raising boys by herself, Mom is never able to give the attention to discipline her boys need. She is busy with a thousand things. In addition, the task of discipline was providentially given to two parents, not one, because this balances out the emotional stress involved with bringing justice. It’s a taxing thing to discipline children as they need, and it’s done best when shared by two. Mom will grow emotionally tired when she is the only one disciplining her children. Her son, more than her daughter, will abuse this. He generally has the stronger will, and he also will generally possess greater size and strength as he matures.