“Is It OK For a Pastor to Hit His Adult Daughter?”

Is it right for a pastor to hit his 22-year-old daughter? And not feel the need to apologize? Even if it’s because it was first a heated arguement? Is it right?

Oh ______. I am so sorry! No ma’am, it is NOT right for any man to hit any woman for any reason. It is an abuse of his strength and an abuse of his God-given position of protector of his family.

When we are speaking on “Guys Are From Mars, Girls Are From Venus” (gender differences), my husband Ray always reads this quote from Stu Weber in his book Tender Warrior:

“Let me put it a little more bluntly—if you lay a hand on a woman, you should be shot, okay? A woman was made to be provided for, protected, and cared for. A man was made to be a provider, protector, and care-giver. Nothing is more pitiful than a man forfeiting his masculinity or a woman her femininity by transgressing the created order.”

I would hope that there would be healthy accountability in place in your church that you could go to the elders of the church and ask for help. I would put it like this, taking my cue from Abigail’s respectful confrontation of David when he was angry and ready for blood (1 Sam. 25): “Dad, it’s not right for you to use your strength to hurt me. I’m going to ask you one time to please don’t do that again. When you treat me so disrespectfully, you are not being the man of God that I know you want to be. I want to help you be the godly father I know you want to be, so if you ever hit me again I just want you to know I’m going to the elders to ask them to help you with your anger and lack of self-control.”

That, of course, would infuriate him, because people doing shameful things don’t want to be forced to face it. And it’s possible that in the culture of your church or your community, men don’t think there’s anything wrong with hitting women they’re related to. If that’s the case, you might want to think about finding a safer place to live.

But the bottom line is no, it’s not right, and I’m sorry you even had to ask.

Sue Bohlin

© 2009 Probe Ministries