Sirach 30:12Ben Sira, Ecclesiasticus
10 Do not laugh with him, or you will have sorrow with him, and in the end you will gnash your teeth. 11 Give him no freedom in his youth, and do not ignore his errors. 12 Bow down his neck in his youth, and beat his sides while he is young, or else he will become stubborn and disobey you, and you will have sorrow of soul from him. 13 Discipline your son and make his yoke heavy, so that you may not be offended by his shamelessness. 14 Better off poor, healthy, and fit than rich and afflicted in body.
Augustine City of God 22.21On the City of God Against the Pagans
But because God does not wholly desert those whom He condemns, nor shuts up in His anger His tender mercies, the human race is restrained by law and instruction, which keep guard against the ignorance that besets us, and oppose the assaults of vice, but are themselves full of labor and sorrow. For what mean those multifarious threats which are used to restrain the folly of children? What mean pedagogues, masters, the birch, the strap, the cane, the schooling which Scripture says must be given a child, beating him on the sides lest he wax stubborn, and it be hardly possible or not possible at all to subdue him? Why all these punishments, save to overcome ignorance and bridle evil desires — these evils with which we come into the world? For why is it that we remember with difficulty, and without difficulty forget? Learn with difficulty, and without difficulty remain ignorant? Are diligent with difficulty, and without difficulty are indolent? Does not this show what vitiated nature inclines and tends to by its own weight, and what succor it needs if it is to be delivered? Inactivity, sloth, laziness, negligence, are vices which shun labor, since labor, though useful, is itself a punishment.
Notes and References
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