Two years ago I wrote about two parents who beat their child to death following the child rearing advice from the book To Train Up A Child. The authors of this book have no formal training in child psychology whatsoever, but they believe they have an ancient book containing the will of the wisest being in existence.
And why not? The bible gives instructions on how to beat your children.
There was disgust by other Christians who believe a man who rose from the dead tells people to be charitable, not have sex before marriage, and who commanded Abraham to murder his son (and don’t think Abraham was morally remiss for being willing, even eager, to obey), and who even put this passage into his holy book but somehow meant the opposite of what it says. But a man who rose from the dead telling a parent to beat their child? That’s just crazy talk.
Later another child, Hana Williams, died because her parents followed the advice in To Raise Up A Child, doubtlessly because they thought it synced up with god’s will, and obeying god was the most important thing in their lives – so much so that they beat the child they loved. I am happy to report that Hana’s parents, Carri and Larry Williams, will receive the full brunt of the law:
Superior Court Judge Susan Cook showed no mercy to Larry and Carri Williams, found guilty of causing the tragic death of their adopted daughter, Hana, by using Biblical based parenting techniques found in the controversial child-rearing book, To Train up a Child, by Michael and Debi Pearl.
Cook sentenced Carri Williams to 37 years in prison. Her husband Larry, convicted of lesser charges, was sentenced to just under 28 years. Both terms are well above the standard sentencing range.
Cook said, “I feel the punishment should match the outrage felt by this community. I am at a complete loss. I think at some point in this trial each and every one of us sat stunned and speechless without the slightest hope of making any sense of this whatsoever.”
God was never there. Though the parents swung their fists on account of the contents of the bible, god never saw fit to stay their hand. He watched while the child suffered for years, and then even while she died, inert and in silence. Absent human intervention it would’ve continued, and absent humanity the parents would never see justice for what they did. Thank goodness humanity exists to inject justice into an otherwise pitiless universe. And thank goodness we elected to do so here.
As usual, what a blessing humanity is, for it does what god either cannot or will not do.