Thursday, 26 January 2012

Jesus the comedian

Have you ever wondered why the parables Jesus told often don't make sense? Like the way he talks about someone being silly enough to build s house on the sand. Or the way he says a mustard seed could become a tree - something which puzzled me for hours before I first preached on it.

Well the book “Between Heaven and Mirth: Why Joy, Humor, and Laughter are at the Heart of the Spiritual Life" by James Martin might provide the answers.

According to Rev Martin Jesus told these over the top stories knowing they they were humorous and would therefore be passed along and remembered. Apparently in biblical times humour was about the telling rather than about a punch line.

Please don't get me wrong, I'm not in anyway reducing the value of the parables; in fact I'm holding them in even high esteem. How much more fantastic were they if they tickled the sense of humour.

I've written before about the popularity of comedians; perhaps Jesus really was one and used that style to get people to hear and keep the word of God.


commentfromalayminister said...

See if you can get a copy of "The Joy of Jesus' Humour in the Gospels by Richard Buckner. He was Chaplain at Merchant Taylor's School Northwood. I knew him A lovely man who died young after an asthma attack. Great book!

Emma Major said...

Thanks for the tip, I'll hunt a copy down