A Father is More Than a Daddy


It is such a joy to be a father. There is nothing sweeter in life than the love which a “Daddy” receives from his children. There is a constant temptation for us to indulge our children in order to keep such happy love flowing.

But there is another side to the picture also. It has been said, “A good father, finding his son on the wrong track, should institute switching procedures.”

“Horrors,” the “bleeding liberal” cries in this day. But, all humor aside, the truth re­mains that discipline is an essential part of being a father. In Ephesians 6:4 we read: “And fathers, do not provoke your children to anger; but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.”

Let it be clearly understood that discipline means training, not punishment. From the very beginning of God’s dealing with mankind He has so ordered the family that the father is “head” of the family and is charged with the serious responsibility of training the children. In Proverbs 22:6 we are reminded, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.”

While it is true that “discipline” does not mean “punishment,” it is also true that failure to discipline at the right time usually results in punishment—possibly for the father, as well as the child.

When those of us who are privileged to be fathers stand before the judgment throne of God, I believe He will ask us: “Did you just ‘daddy’ your children, or were you a real father to them?”


This article was written by Dr. James Van Dyke for The John Ankerberg Show, ©1999.

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