Growing Kids God’s Way – Part 5

Within the next chapter the author explores the idea of a conscience. In this setting the author defines a conscious as the part of the mind that decides what’s right or wrong. Gary divides the conscience into two main sections – the moral conscience and the primary conscious. He believes that god gives all of mankind a inner sense of right and wrong. This inner innate sense of right and wrong he terms the primary conscious. This is the very conscious that Christians and Gary Ezzo point at when reading Romans 2:14-15. The learned or trained portion of the conscious Gary terms the moral conscious.

The author then focuses the rest of the chapter on the moral conscious, which he divides into four points.

  1. Establishing the moral warehouse.
    • Within Gary Ezzo’s mind this moral conscious needs to be trained. This initially comes from scriptural instruction from the child’s parents and from the family church.
  2. The four activities of the conscience. Gary states these activities of the consciences are split into two positives and two negatives.
    • The negative aspects are to warn and accuse.
      • He also lumps guilt into this. As he feels that if you have been trained correctly you will feel guilt for your moral transgressions.
    • The positives aspects he states are prompts and confirms.
      • Ezzo feels that your conscious will confirm within you when you do something right.
    • The odd part for me here is that Gary acknowledges that trains plays a role in when we feel guilt or “accusation.” But within the same section he states that the “feeling of confirmation” is “God’s pat on the back.”
  3. Moral Search Mechanism.
    • Gary propositions that our conscience searches through the biblical morals we have been taught to know how to respond to situations in our life.
    • He gives an odd example here of a situation were an old man enters a room and there are no available seats. He states that someone that has been taught the “value of respecting age” would immediately recognize that this was an apt situation for that moral to apply. The person would stand and give the old man the chair. He then states if someone has not been taught this value they will ignore the old man and continue to sit.
      • I do want to interject here. Empathy is a real human trait. We can see, hear, and feel other’s pain and suffering. Empathy for a elderly human who is in discomfort would also be a real reason for someone to act and offer a chair to this person. A straight easy biblical moral answer or value is not always needed in order to show someone love or compassion.
  4. Positive and Prohibitive Training
    • The author states positive and negative feedback MUST be given to the child in order to develop a proper conscience. This is envisioned as being primarily negative at younger ages (examples in the book are age 2 and 3) and moving slowly towards positive feedback.
      • The author describes prohibitive training as “Warning, restrictions, punishment, and consequences, and is used more commonly in the early years.”
      • “Positive training includes instructions, encouragement, and reinforcement and takes place predominately in the middle and upper years.”
        • It’s made very clear that author does not believe this type of positive training starts until the child is older. With the author giving an example of them openly mocking a parent who tries this with a two year old.
    • “As Becky’s conscience continues to develop and her understanding of family relationships deepens, her parents gradually shift from negative consequence and restrictive training to positive and proactive training. Becky is now learning many moral truths. The emphasis is not only on what she shouldn’t do, but also on what she should do.” p94
      • Becky is the example child’s name in his child development scenario.
      • This this quote quite clearly lays how the author plans for a child to be reared. First punitive punishments like spankings or swats are used to control the child’s behavior. Then as the child grows older the parents are then more apt to use more logical ways to reason with a child.
        • I hope my discomfort comes across here. Gary Ezzo has already made it clear that the first method of training will be punitive. Punishment and pain are to be the main teaching tools in a child’s early life.

Gary then moves on to taking about a healthy and unhealthy conscience. He states that parents must provide their children with training that motivates them to do good things because it is morally right rather than out of fear of punishment. All of this sounds wonderful, but please be reminded Gary just finished a short section on why punitive punishment was needed to motivate children. I feel that he’s laying a poor foundation for his own goals here.

If anyone is reading this I appreciate you sitting through all of the craziness, and though all of Gary Ezzo’s odd made up phrases with convoluted meanings. It’s been good for me to do this and a bit cathartic in a way. I can see why my parents would have bought into this. The wording and fundamentalist views that are foundational to this man’s teachings would have drawn my parents right in. And my parents wanted to raise us (their children) in a way that they never experienced, a truly biblical way. Gary boldly and openly offers this solution to how to raise your children in a Christian way and people certainly listened.

8 thoughts on “Growing Kids God’s Way – Part 5

    1. Who’s bidding? No one has asked me to do this. I’m reading this book because it influenced my parent’s thoughts and actions. It helped send my parents on a path were they believed that they had to discipline in an authoritarian way. Using corporal discipline.

      I’m doing this to try to understand my parents ideas and beliefs. And to also expose others to how harmful some of these teachings are.


      1. Once again your reply is telling. If you knew God and His Word you would have the answer to your question. I do hope you get saved while you have time.


  1. I’ve been there. And been that person (saved and living as an evangelical) once in my life. I grew up in an evangelical home and heard the gospel so many times. I lived within that culture and believed it for years. Even going to a pretty conservative Christian college. So I know where you are coming from, but it’s not for me. I’m not coming from an uninformed position here. I know the bible well – and even have a minor in bible from my time in bible college. Please don’t assume I’m coming from an uninformed position. And I don’t appreciate being told that I need to “get saved” before it’s too late for me. From the outside that very much comes off as a threat and I do not wish to have that type of language used. And it does very little to change a person’s mind, especially someone who previously came from that same viewpoint. Please do not try to threaten someone into a belief choice.


    1. “I’ve been there. And been that person (saved and living as an evangelical) once in my life.”

      Let’s test that shall we? So let me get this straight. You surrendered your life as a slave to the Lord Jesus Christ and faithfully served Him, walking according to His ways to bring Him glory, daily picked up your cross, died to yourself and sought to do your Heavenly Father’s (supposedly) will, held to the promise of Eternal Life, for most of your life out of a grateful heart and faith that Christ died and paid the penalty for your sins but then decided to give all that up to go back to being a slave to Sin, serve your daddy, Satan’s, will and do his bidding so you could pay for your own sins with eternal torment in the Lake Of Fire. Right?

      Really? THAT is what you expect us to believe and simultaneously not think you are a moros?

      Sorry, I’m not buying it. Most likely you were a Poser and false convert of the Easy-Believism/Seeker-Sensitive false gospel and were deceived/fooled into believing you got saved because some other Biblically-ignorant Poser told you that you could be too if you just asked Jesus into your totally-depraved Jer. 17:9 heart.

      “I grew up in an evangelical home and heard the gospel so many times.”

      Care to tell us EXACTLY what “the gospel” was that you heard?

      “I lived within that culture and believed it for years.”

      Now THAT is telling. How noteworthy that you admit you “lived within that culture” and NOT “in Christ” while walking in the Spirit. And you “believed it”. The antecedent being “culture” and NOT the Gospel or the Word.

      “Even going to a pretty conservative Christian college.”

      Got any idea how many total Heretics have done the same? Ever heard of Bart Ehrman? Zane Hodges? Bob Wilkin? Charles Ryrie? Joseph Dillow? Or Chafer Theological Seminary? I could go on but that should suffice. If not, look ’em up.

      “So I know where you are coming from, but it’s not for me.”

      You obviously don’t because if you did then you would KNOW that it IS for you!

      “I’m not coming from an uninformed position here.”

      You’re definitely not coming remotely close to convincing me of that yet. Nor I’d say even putting forth a compelling argument.

      “I know the bible well – and even have a minor in bible from my time in bible college.”

      So does Satan. Better than you or me. So what’s your point? As for your last there, see my above. There is a difference between knowing what Scripture says and knowing what Scripture is saying. And IF you actually did “know” Scripture you would know that you can’t know what it’s saying.

      “Please don’t assume I’m coming from an uninformed position.”

      NO assumption being made. IF you were “informed” you would know that.

      “And I don’t appreciate being told that I need to “get saved” before it’s too late for me.”

      Don’t really care whether you appreciate the truth or not. Your not appreciating being told the truth is NOT my problem.

      From the outside that very much comes off as a threat and I do not wish to have that type of language used.”

      Take it any way or however you want. NOT my problem. And that whole Snowflake mentality is just STUPID. I’ll show just how much below after I address your next two OBVIOUS banal, feckless, vacuous, and vapid comments.

      “And it does very little to change a person’s mind, especially someone who previously came from that same viewpoint.”

      EVERY single Poser and supposed Apostate I have ever talked to demonstrates their egotistical, delusional, self-imposed god-complex as they sit up on their self-built throne and show their faux-omniscience. WITHOUT EXCEPTION. Now, you made a Truth Claim. Back it up or stand guilty of being just another pontificating blowhard bloviating like a pompous jackass as if he knows something when he has NO clue whether his claim is true or not.

      “Please do not try to threaten someone into a belief choice.”

      Please don’t try to tell people what to do until you seek help for your delusional god-complex. ESPECIALLY children of God when you are a spiritually-dead, totally-depraved son of disobedience and child of wrath who is compelled to do what you do by the Flesh, the World, and the Enemy. (Eph. 2:1-3) IOW, Self, Sin, and Satan. And your flaccid, pusillanimous entreating is really quite unbecoming. Are you an effeminate homosexual? Is that why you left the supposed culture in exchange for the sodomite culture?

      Now, let me take your empty rhetoric and use it as a training tool for the edification of others…

      So folks, you’re barreling down the highway at 70mph and you see a sign that says, “STOP!!!! Turn around. Bridge out.” But you ignore it and just keep right on barreling down the highway. After all, you have NO evidence there is even actually a bridge. Let alone that it’s out. And you just don’t cotton up to threats.

      And you come to another sign that says, “WARNING!!!! Turn around, Bridge out.” But you ignore it and just keep barreling down the highway. Still no evidence of either. And two threats are twice as bad as one.

      Then you come to a sign that says, “LAST CHANCE!!!! Turn around. Bridge out. Lake Of Fire at the bottom and NO WAY OUT!!!”

      Now, according to this genius on here, the folks who put those signs up are threatening you. So it’s time to stomp the pedal to the metal and proceed full speed down the road.

      Now, YOU decide. Who you wanna follow? The signs of those who call Christians deluded, delusional whackos, terrorists with no morals who just threaten others with eternal torment? Or those who give a loving warning of what does lie ahead.

      YOU decide who is showing REAL “Love” and concern for you. The folks who put up those signs and give you a warning or these folks. And YOU decide what are YOU gonna do? Follow the signs and heed the warning or just keep right on barreling down the highway?

      The choice is yours. And so are the eternal consequences.


      1. I’ve put my story out there for people to read. If you are going to insult and assume much about my life the least you could do is take the time to read a little of it before you make assumptions. I grew up homeschooled in a conservative household and in a Baptist type church (bible church). I grew up on Christian curriculum and teachings. And I knew Jesus to be my Lord and Savior since I’ve was a preschooler. Even after that in my teen years I reached out many times to God praying the sinners prayer. Asking for my sins to be taken away and for Jesus to become my lord and savior. This wasn’t a “seeker-sensitive” church or environment. I grew up learning doctrine along with my bible. The gospel would be the “good news” of Jesus Christ and how he came to the world to provide salvation. And that there was nothing I could ever do to earn that salvation. I had to accept my sinful state and realize that trust in Jesus was the only way to obtain freedom from that sin. Jesus’ death and resurrection were the only way that this was provided for me. I believed that for years. Fully and truly. I even went to a college where I thought I would learn more about god and help me grow in my faith (Pensacola Christian College). I did this all to avoid the dangers of a professor or teacher pushing me away from god. And yes somehow I still did walk away from that. And I’ve walked away from a literal interpretation of the scriptures (as I’ve said in my blog before). Threating someone with hellfire is a pretty empty thing when they don’t believe in a literal hell / heaven.

        It’s very hard to have any conversation in any productive way when it’s mainly just insults and accusations being thrown around. I did believe. Christianity was my life for 25 yrs. My friends and family were all Christian, and I purposely tried to keep my circles closed to anyone who wasn’t saved. I know I may never convince you that I was saved. But I was a Christian, and I held my faith and belief in Christ very closely. I started to look around a bit in my late 20s and saw that the church and many within it had caused a lot of people in my life pretty severe harm. And it caused me to step back and start asking questions. Questions that didn’t have answers. Like why is prayer unanswered (God grants a prayer for a parking space but sits out the holocaust)? Or why would god sent millions to hell without any witness to them. For example all of those that died in the flood. Or why does god even require the sacrifice of his son when he was the one that set up the system to start with. And yes I realize apologetics does have some answers there but I find them to fall short. If God is omnipotent and all powerful, he knew what he was creating. God made this whole system. He created the problem and devised a solution for it. And yet, I was told, he still sends those that do not know or haven’t accept “his” religion to a place of eternal judgement. He chose to create a world that would lead to millions of people suffering in hell for eternity. And for that chance at a few million people choosing his religion and serving him the rest of their lives and in eternity.

        I do have more personal reasons as well. Like why did god never help me with my anxiety or depression. I cried out to god then. I begged him for assistance. I called on him just as David did, but no help or relief ever came. I was pointed time and time again to go to god in my times of need and I did. But god was never there. God has always been a void to me. I’ve reached out to him and poured out my life, sins, and my pains. But he’s never once been there when I called out to him. I’ve also watched as the church has turned my friends into hateful and judgmental people. Who look down on those that have sinned or done something wrong in their eyes. Feeling their judgment as I held my sins in confidence because of a fear of judgment or excommunication from their community. Something that has come to fruition anyway after I expressed beliefs that didn’t match with theirs.

        The church and Christian community has proven it cares very little for those it calls “lost.” They judge and do little to help the needs of people beyond offering “eternal salvation.” I know this isn’t every church, but this is the story of every church I’ve attended in my life. And most evangelicals that I’ve known. If the church wants to show Jesus’ love to the people of the world then they actually need to do so in a physical way.

        You are welcome to insult my “snowflake” self all you want but insults to the LGBTQ+ community won’t be tolerated here. Implying that I left the church to pursue hedonism is childish and a bit humorous. But calling anyone a sodomite won’t happen here and I will block you from commenting further on my blog if you insist on that point.

        This is also not a place to witness and preach hellfire. I specifically asked you not to. Please be respectful. If you can’t listen to my “pusillanimous entreating” you will be blocked from further commenting.


      2. I’m not even gonna read that whole bucket of horse spit. I’ll simply address one thing you said to so just how stupid and BLIND you are:

        “And I knew Jesus to be my Lord and Savior since I’ve was a preschooler. Even after that in my teen years I reached out many times to God praying the sinners prayer.”

        You just contradicted yourself and PROVED you were never saved and are to stupid and blind to see it. Now I see as I type this that you are threatening to block me for telling the TRUTH. Fine by me. I actually appreciate it when the trash takes itself out. You’re a Liar and anybody with eyes to see or even a spiritually-dead, totally-depraved son of disobedience and child of wrath with a clear thinking functioning brain, a conscience that hasn’t been seared beyond the capability of knowing Truth, and a 3rd Grade Reading Comprehension level can see that.

        “You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” (John 8:44)

        “But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and sexually immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all LIARS, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.” (Rev. 21:8)

        Outside are the dogs and sorcerers and the sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices FALSEHOOD. (Rev 22:15)

        All that said, perhaps God has not turned you over to a reprobate mind (Rom. 1) yet and there is still hope for you. The Good News of the Gospel is that the Unbeliever is a God-hating, totally-depraved son of disobedience and a child of wrath (Eph. 2:1-3) who is an enemy of God (Rom. 8:7 & James 4:4) that the wrath of God REMAINS upon (Jn. 3:36) and is a slave to sin (Jn. 8:34) on the road to eternal torment in the Lake of Fire (Matt. 7:13) as the deserved just punishment for sinning against Holy Righteous God.

        BUT God out of His Love and by His Grace has provided a Substitution as payment for that penalty in the sacrifice of His Son (Jn. 3:16). So that when you hear God call and draw you to Christ (Jn. 6:44) then do not harden your heart and hear Him. Hear Him and learn! (Jn 6:45). Then respond to the conviction of the Holy Spirit (Jn 16:8), count the cost (Lk. 14:26-33), and surrender your life as a slave to Jesus Christ as your new Lord & Master (Matt. 16:24) and will glorify God as you were created to do. Confess your disobedience, rebellion, and sins. Beg Jesus to save you (Matt. 5:3) so that you can spend the rest of your life here and in Eternity serving Him and bringing glory to Him as your new Lord & Master so that Self, Sin, & Satan no longer are. Ask Jesus to remove your evil, wicked Jer. 17:9 heart and replace it with the new Eze. 36:26 heart. Do that and place ALL your trust in Him, and He has promised He will make you a New Creation in Him that will spend all Eternity with Him where you will serve Him, worship Him, and glorify Him forever.


      3. You were asked politely not to preach hellfire and damnation on my blog. Because you cannot be respectful in any way you no longer will have the privilege to comment here.


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