Monday, 9 March 2015

A funny thing happened on the way to Galilee...

I was recently involved in a conversation in which someone asked if Jesus had a sense of humour. This developed into a general discussion on humour in the Bible. Now, I'm certain Jesus very often had a twinkle in His eye as He was telling a story, it's just that by and large the humour has got lost in translation. 

I think it would have cracked his listeners up when He drew a word-picture of a camel being squeezed through the eye of a needle, or a man oblivious to the plank in his own eye as he tried to point out the speck of dust in his friend’s eye.

The thought of the dignified, elderly patriarch of a family tucking his robe into his loin cloth and hurtling hell-for-leather down the road at the sight of his dejected son trudging home reeking of pigs would have been as hilarious as it was shocking to Jesus’ first hearers.

There is plenty of humour elsewhere in the Bible, too. This is my particular favourite: it seems an archetypally Jewish, and really quite modern-sounding brand of humour when the Israelites whined to Moses, “Weren’t there any graves in Egypt, that you brought us out here to die in the desert?”

Humour is a God-given gift. It follows that the Creator must be the funniest person in the Universe, or how could he have imparted the gifts of wit, hilarity and absurdity to His creation? When we use these gifts in our writing, we’re mirroring one aspect of the character of God.

So here’s my own contribution:

Lot’s Wife

He says to flee from the coming wrath.
He must be out of his mind!
He wants me to run! At my time of life?!
He says not to look behind.
But I can’t resist, as the thunders clap,
One last look at home.  Why, nothing will hap

Ros Bayes has been writing all her life, and has 6 published and 3 self-published books, as well as some 3 dozen magazine articles to her credit.  She is the mother of 3 daughters, one of whom has multiple complex disabilities, and she currently works for Through the Roof ( as their Training Resources Developer, and loves getting paid to write about disability all day.  You can find her blog at and her author page at  Follow her on Twitter: @rosbwriting.


  1. Great post, Ros. Well done! You've used your obstacles as stepping stones (to quote a quote) and allowed God's strength to come through in your weaknesses. It's your #TimetoShine. And I couldn't agree more about God's / Jesus' sense of humour. Love the way you've cut off the last line of your poem. That should raise a laugh in heaven.

  2. Of course there is humor n the bible and you have pointed out some cracking examples. God made us with a sense of humour so he must have one. Love the poem

  3. Thanks for this Ros! We can take ourselves a bit too seriously at times..

  4. Loved the poem. Very funny. I am so glad God has a sense of humour. I suspect he needs one, dealing with us lot.

  5. Great poem! Thanks, Ros.