S05E008, Healthy Humour, Endurance
On this episode, we explain the concept of spiritual maintenance.
Endurance is your weekly spiritual workout, whether you think of yourself as a beginner, an intermediate, or advanced!
For GoDeeper this week, Steven tackles the surprisingly difficult topic of healthy humour by first explaining how little humour is in the Bible.
He quotes a verse in Ecclesiastes, which says that there is a time to laugh, and he then points out that a quick Google search reveals numerous benefits to laughter.
Steven compares two examples from the Bible where people took the mickey and cautions us not to mock others. Plus, he touches on sarcasm and black humour.
For the final segment, Nathan asks Steven some questions about GoDeeper:
- Do you think God wants us to laugh?
- I was wondering about that account with the bears. Elisha’s reaction did seem to be a trifle extreme, don’t you think?
- I suppose we need to apply wisdom in our use of humour. What do you think?
- What did Adam say when he first saw Eve?
Check out this week’s episode to find out Steven’s answers to these questions.
Steven and Nathan
LISTEN TO THE PODCAST
READ THE TRANSCRIPT
Hello and welcome to Endurance, your weekly spiritual workout. I'm Nathan. This week we are looking at the idea of humour, specifically healthy humour. What does healthy humour look like? What sort of humour is not insulting, or rude, or unpleasant? And after all, laughter is good for the soul, as they say, but how do we have a healthy humour that does not offend other people, that's really important. That's what Steven is going to explore momentarily. comparing different types of humour, and what sort of humour we should have. So, hope you enjoy this episode
Those tough patches in life will either make or break you. So if you're still standing smile, you got this. #SpeakTruth #makeorbreak.
So this is another go deeper with me, Steven, where we go deeper into the subject of Endurance. And today, it's all about healthy humour. So, let's begin. If I look up the word humour or laugh in the Bible, each, on the YouVersion app, each reference doesn't seem to be especially funny. It's either people laughing at other people or mocking people, it tends to have a rather negative connotation to it. But the, there is a time for laughter, it does say in Ecclesiastes, there are a couple of occasions where people are kind of taking the Mickey. But it does give the impression that laughter isn't a good thing.
That is not the case. God's first miracle on Earth was turning water into wine. God isn't against us having fun or enjoying ourselves. But there is a very serious tone to the Bible, which is kind of interesting to note, as we look at the idea of humour, but if you look up on Google, there are loads of benefits to laughter. It is definitely beneficial for us. And God does have a sense of humour, after all, he did make the platypus. It's, in the Bible, there isn't much in the way of humour is important to note as we go on, as we go on, but we do have two examples. Both from the Old Testament actually.
The first one is from Elijah, and he is with the Israelites who have kind of turned away from God and they turned to worshipping Baal, B, double A, L. And as they're doing that, he comes along and says you need to worship God. So they have this big kind of like contest on this mountaintop. And all the Baal worshipers are asking their god to pour down fire. And Elijah says pour down fire and God burns up this alter. Anyway about noontime Elijah began mocking them, you'll have to shout louder he scoffed for surely he is a god. Perhaps he is daydreaming or is, or has gone to the loo. Or maybe he's away on a trip or is asleep and needs to be awakened.
There we have the prophet Elijah making a joke really. And then we have Elisha. He left Jericho and went up to Bethel. As he was walking along the road, a group of boys from the town began mocking and making fun of him. Elisha turned around and looked at them, and he cursed them in the name of the Lord. Then two bears came out of the woods and mauled 42 of them. Now, I'm no theologian, there's a lot of tough stuff in there. But the main point is that these boys were mocking a prophet, and it didn't go so well for them. So there is a clear warning in the Bible against mocking people. It is bad to mock. I think it's something we all fall foul of on a regular basis.
I'm always taking the mickey out of Nathan. He's always taking the mickey out of me. But generally speaking, that's not so bad because we know each other. When we take, mock people outside of the family, people we don't really know. That's not such a good thing. Perhaps we mock them, leaders of our country, Prime Minister or whatnot. Mocking is bad and we clearly see it in this passage.
But there's another thing about laughter. Proverbs 26, 18 to 19. Like a madman who throws flaming darts and deadly arrows, so is the person who decieves his neighbour and says I was only joking. That's another bad form of humour, unhealthy human. The idea of someone deceiving a neighbour and then saying I was only joking, we see a lot actually. It's not good. It's not helpful. And it's not especially funny really. Other examples of unhealthy humour, perhaps sarcasm. I think it's a bit dodgy, bordering on lying, but it can be quite funny when someone's sarcastic at the right moment.
As long as you know they're sarcastic. When people take it literally it goes wrong. It's a tough one this subject. If you, Is it right? Is it wrong? There's no clear thing in the Bible that says sarcasm is bad. Though it does say that lying is wrong. So it's dodgy to say the least. I think I ought to touch on humour in adversity. Sometimes people have strong black humour, perhaps people who are in emergencies might make those sort of jokes that perhaps the rest of us don't fully understand.
But in adversity, a lot of people use humour to help them cope with difficult situations. And it is valuable and it helps them keep sane. And sometimes this might not get other people's sense of humour, but it helps them cope. And in both ways, you might make jokes that offend people. It's a chewy one to say the least. We just need to avoid unnecessarily mocking people or being unnecessarily rude, offensive, but also do enjoy yourselves do have a good laugh. Definitely a chewy one. We'll discuss it more, me and Nathan.
So, let's pray. Andy is going to come on and show us how to pray. Excellent. What, what have you got there?
It's my world's Atlas.
So I can pray for the world.
You see, prayer is good,
Right. Okay. You're gonna show us how to do that then?
Yeah, yeah. Yeah, so I've gone, I've got my atlas. And if you go to the letter A I'm going to start here so,
Please God Please bless Abenra and Archen and Arborg.
What did you like about the story?
Dave the Dog 7:18
Bob, you like Bob?
Dave the Dog 7:20
And the stick.
And the stick?
Dave the Dog 7:22
Me like sticks.
You like the stick?
Dave the Dog 7:24
Me likes sticks a lot I do.
Well, okay, well we'll try and make sure there's some more stories with sticks in Dave, especially for you.
Alright, so excellent excellent talk as usual Steven.
Very enlightening on the subject of humour and I thought there was some very interesting scriptures that you read out.
But was it funny?
Well, you are usually funny. Just to watch.
Yeah usually there's,
Isn't that mocking?
No, no, no, it's a compliment.
Right. You were saying?
I mean I just look at you and I feel so much better about myself, and the day in general. Got that amazing gift. Anyway, so we'll start with these questions shall we.
So first of all, do you think God wants us laugh?
Well, I think God has made us with a sense of humour and with a desire to laugh, we want to watch something funny or have a good laugh. We want it I reckon is something that God has placed in us. More importantly, God has created us with a sense of humour. We wouldn't get jokes if God hadn't made us with that sense of humour.
And I often think that God seems to have a bit of a sense of humour in his timing.
As I said he made the platypus
Those are funny to look at, aren't they.
Yeah. Okay, so I was wondering about that account with the bears. It seems to me that a Elisha's reaction was a trifle extreme. Could you explain that?
No. Well, Prophet's provocative,
Prerogative, he was a prophet of God, and they were making fun of him. They were out line.
And there are consequences when we do wrong things. And this is a prime example of exactly that. They didn't live to tell the,
Yeah, it's a chewy passage wouldn't you say?
Chewy. So I suppose we need to apply wisdom in our use of humour don't we.
Yeah, definitely. There is the perfect timing when it's funny and bad timing when it's rude. You got to be careful. You got to use wisdom. Some people might not get certain styles of humour, though. For example, I mentioned black humour how some people won't get the joke, especially if it's wrongly timed. But like police, paramedics, fire service, military, they will use black humour to help them cope with difficult situations. But then you might not want to use that humour in front of someone who's just lost that loved one. They'll have to use it elsewhere.
There's a timing for isn't there?
We need to be sensitive to others when we're making jokes. And we need to be careful that we don't make a joke and that's inappropriate.
Like, at a funeral.
Yeah. And obviously, since this is an episode about humour, I think it's only right that I should ask you a joke.
Go for it.
So, what did Adam say when he first saw Eve?
I know this one. Whoa, man.
Yep. That's why he called her woman.
I know there are so many of those jokes about the Bible. Some are rather more cheesey than others. But let's face it, at the end of the day, humour is a really great way to make us feel better. To lift the mood to help us, often, help us work through difficult times. It's very therapeutic.
Relieves stress, and whatnot.
Exactly so at the right time and in the right place humour is a really good, and I think a very godly thing.
I hope you learned something more about humour, and how to have a healthy humour in your everyday life. See you next week.
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Written by Steven The Dude