A spanking MAY not be "abuse", but a beating is ALWAYS abuse. A spanking is a slap that stings, but does not cause physical injury. Using a belt or spoon, or threatening with a pipe, is more than a spanking. That counts as a beating. As does repeated forcible slaps, any punching, or anything that could cause physical injury to the child. And, even the slap should only be used to prevent a child from doing something that could create more harm (such as running into the street after being told not to).
Worse is the demands that the religion places on children. They should not be forced to sit still for hours at a time. They should not be dragged out in field circus all the time--especially when they have school work. They should not be consistently forced to stay up until after 10 PM on school nights, especially when they have a major test to study for the next day. They should not be subjected to not having any Christmas joy when everyone else is enjoying the holidays. And, when they make a mistake, they get more spankings (which is emotional abuse), and often beatings (which is both physical and emotional abuse).
And it's not just at boasting sessions. When I was first going into the cancer, I saw one child that was always getting spanked and threatened with more "Just wait until we get home" (more emotional abuse). He was dragged out in field circus with his mother, who was pio-sneering during the REJECT Jesus Party season, when he was only 8. During school vacation, I would be out during the afternoons every weekday until 3 PM--he was out all morning, every day, and would stay out until sometimes 5 PM. That was his school vacation! And, every complaint, every playing with a twig or rock, every distraction yielded a spanking and threats of more spankings when they got home. The spankings were enough, but the threats of more--along with stealing his school vacation, were even worse.
Now, if the religion actually was the truth, why in hell do children always seem to "need" to be spanked, beaten, and threatened several times per event just to keep them in line?