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Discipline of Children and Demons


After becoming involved in deliverance work, we began to realize how many things the demons promote and cause to happen.  Actually if a person is not aware of the spiritual warfare with evil spirits, there are many baffling things that lack explanation.

For example, Scripture is quite explicit that children must be disciplined by parents (Proverbs 13:24).  To a very small child, his parent represents God, and determines what is right or wrong.  If the child learns to be undisciplined and rebellious, he grows up contemptuous and resistant to all authority and rules of any kind.

When the child comes into contact with the authority and regulations governing conduct in the schools, he is already conditioned to rebel against them.  The same attitude will be evidenced toward the laws of the land and the officers designated to enforce them.  He will react predictable, angrily rejecting the idea that he is not a world unto himself.  This sullen resistance to and rejection of all authority over him permeates his relationship on the job and in every area of his life.  Most importantly, this sets him up to resist violently the claims of Jesus Christ that demand unconditional surrender to receive salvation.  By failing to train up a child to obey and yield to proper authority, not only does he grow up to a very unpleasant and difficult person, but he is preconditioned to defy God’s call to surrender and can even miss Heaven because of it.  No wonder the Bible is so explicit and firm concerning child discipline and rearing!

In deliverance we became aware of the influence and driving force of demons in causing undesirable behavior patterns in children.  I puzzled over the orders in Scripture to use the rod on an erring child.  Why this, when so much of the problem was demonic?  What good to punish a child physically for something that well might have spiritual roots?

The answer God gave to me was that the soulish, fleshly behavior must be conquered and brought into subjection.  That which is demonically driven must be dealt with in such a way as to teach the child that he must not give in to the pressures of the enemy.

The child at an early age must learn the value of self-discipline and that he is not required to give in to every whim or desire coming through the flesh and the mind.  Corrective discipline will cause the child to weigh the consequences of his responses to situations, people and problems.

The prayerful and judicious application of the rod can act as a deterrent to childish and foolish behavior (Proverbs 22:15).  It teaches the child that there is a consequence to be reckoned with when unwise choices and actions are taken.  This is preparing him for later life when his choices will determine what he reaps in both spiritual and the material realms in dealings with God.

An over indulgent, lazy parent or authority figure over a child who is reluctant to apply corrective measures fairly and consistently, produces an offspring who grows up trying to “beat the system”.  It becomes obvious then that the parent has a grave responsibility to be consistent, fair, loving, and firm.

Whatever approach the parent uses in discipline will be associated in the mind of the child with his idea of God and how He deals with situations.  We have had many cases where parents had prepared the way for deep-seated spirits of Fear, Rejection and Conditional Love to enter.  If the parent is capricious and inconsistent in the application of discipline, then there is genuine confusion in the mind of the child what is right and wrong.  In his immature mind he conceives of the right as what he can get away with and the wrong as that which brings punishment.

Conditional love is another giant problem rooted in the behavior of unwise authority figures.  If parental love must be earned by being “good” the child is taught the concept of “earning” love.  This will persist throughout and color his life unless relieved by deliverance.  There is an evil spirited named Conditional Love that drives people to work and strive to “earn” the benefits of being loved.  Since all human beings crave love and acceptance, this one causes untold suffering.

Not only does conditional love create disaster in relationships with other people, particularly in marriage, but even more important and more damaging, it causes the victim to think of God in the same terms.  This in turn makes him unable to accept the marvelous grace of God who loves us because we need loving and not because we do or ever will merit such love.  Jesus did not say “I love you IF”,  He just said “I love you.”   The misery of persons who are desperately clawing for acceptance and love from others and from God Himself is a sorry spectacle indeed.  It is a tribute of sorts to the enemy’s success in stealing, killing and destroying.

Another aspect of unwise or negligent actions by parents is found in those who have had harsh, demanding and overstern parents.  The drive to please those whom you love and respect is an innate one and the yearning to be accepted is a tremendously powerful one.  If a person is rejected and condemned by those around him, it is almost impossible for him to accept himself as he is.  Some children constantly fail to please their parents who regularly demand more of them than they can produce.  The offspring become depressed, hopeless and tend to despair of ever achieving anything worthwhile.

Surrounded by criticism and angry rejection, self-esteem can be eroded to the point that there will either be consumption by hopelessness or explosion into violent rebellion.  This is because of fury over continuous pressure and unfair demands.  The concept of God is also colored by these things.  Particularly involved is the relationship to the child’s earthly father or father figure and this will determine how he conceives God to be.  If his father is warm, loving and helpful, a child will think of the Heavenly Father in these terms.  However, if the parent is harsh, aloof, and unloving, this subconsciously will be transferred to the child’s idea of God in Heaven.  No wonder the Scriptures say God will turn the hearts of the father (not the mothers) to the children (Malachi 4:6).

Discipline should always be administered in love.  The person must be made to realize that, although his behavior is rejected and not acceptable, the child himself is loved and cherished in spite of (not because of) the misdeed.  Here again, our Heavenly Father often must reject our deeds and chastise us, but He never rejectsus.

The following is an excerpt from “Children and Deliverance, Booklet #10″ by Pastor Win Worley. Copyright © 1983 by Win Worley, Revised © 1992. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including storage and retrieval system, without securing permission in writing from the publisher, WRW Publications, PO Box 852626, Mesquite, TX 75185.

If you’d like to obtain your own copy of not only this, but other materials authored by Win Worley, please contact WRW Publications at www.wrwpublications.com

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