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March 11, 2014 7:25 am

MY LOUSY WORLD: Looking for — and finding — levity in the Bible

Written by Doug Blough

Has God ever laughed? We have no way of knowing. For instance, when Job would step in a bucket, did God shake his head and think, “Oh that boy!”

My first green attempt at writing humor was in ’91 when, amidst a heartbreak, I began writing about the Cody wind that tortured my new perm while shingling the museum. It became a lengthy diatribe about God creating wind, when all hell broke loose in the Garden of Eden when the animals began snarling and even angels got into slap fights.

My friend Ev Diehl tipped off an editor, who ran the story in two separate issues. My first experience with an editor’s ax left me reeling, so I published my little wind saga into a book I sold in local stores.

A glib man I knew disapproved, saying “Nowhere in the Bible does it say Jesus ever laughed.”

My equally glib retort was that it doesn’t say Jesus went to the bathroom either, but I’m fairly sure he did. He was fully human with a bladder and a sense of humor, I suspect. Thus I don’t feel too convicted when often spying humor hidden within the pages of the Good Book.

Woe to the biblical pigs. Pigs always have gotten a bad, stinky rap and remain one of society’s most abused animals, but at least they’re no longer possessed by every Tom, Dick and Harry demon coming down the pike. If you recall, Jesus confronted the legion of demons living inside a crazy chap who lived in the tombs and wore no clothes.

I quote John 8:25: “A large herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside. The demons begged Jesus to let them go into them, and he gave them permission …” (as the pigs sighed “Gulp!”)

“When the demons came out of the man, they went into the pigs and the herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake and were drowned.”

Now what did those pigs do to deserve THAT? One minute you’re munching on a rancid cucumber, not bothering anyone, and the next you’re levitating, vomiting and committing suicide.

But … hey, they’re “only pigs” right? That pig logic stinks!

When the prodigal son hit rock bottom, he joined the pigs he cared for as his final, symbolic act of desperation, sharing their pods and slop without even asking the pigs first. Can you imagine Polly Pig’s flabbergasted expression when the guy asked, “Were you going to eat that tomato?”

What about the owners and attendants of the pigs? Were they compensated for their loss? The pig shepherds may have been docked for each pig lost over the cliff. Pigs and those that loved them got a raw deal in those days of miracles, but no ASPCA.

The Messiah was one hell of a nice guy and normally quite diplomatic. But on rare occasion, he could be a tad rude, such as when he explained to his disciples all the terrible abuses that were predestined to soon befall him. Mark, the ultimate loyalist, shouted emphatically, “Never Lord. This shall never happen to you!”

What did Jesus say in return? Matthew 16:23 tells us he turned to Peter and snapped, “Get behind me, Satan; you are a stumbling block to me …”

Satan? Really? Isn’t that a bit harsh?

Who could have blamed Mark for a sarcastic, “OK, I’ll get behind thee, but my name isn’t Satan. Also, stop calling me ‘Shirley.’”

Sad sack Job came up with some good ones born of misery and despair, like when he decried: “My breath is offensive to my wife. I am loathsome to my own brothers.”

Hey, I hear ya, brother. And I always thought Romans 12:20 a bit peculiar. Jesus starts by explaining how we should love our enemies when he said, “If your enemy is hungry, feed him. If he is thirsty, give him something to drink …”

But then he throws in, “In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” Ouch! Talk about a warm and fuzzy notion coming to a screeching halt.

Actually, the Bible does address the natural act of tinkling. You coulda knocked me over with the foreskin of a slain Philistine, but there it was in Samuel 24 when David fled the vengeful King Saul.

Verse 3: “… a cave was there and David went in to relieve himself.”  We can only conjecture whether his back teeth were floating, but with the poor dental care then, it’s entirely possible.

Ironically, Saul later stopped in that same cave to taketh his own leak: “At the place where the road passes some sheepfolds, Saul went into a cave to relieve himself. But as it happened, David and his men were hiding farther back in that very cave.”

I don’t know if that particular cave had a sign at the entrance saying “Last Chance for Tinkle Dance” or what, but this cave had more tinklers than a bar parking lot after last call.

I have only begun to explore the Biblical levity, but as the Bible warns, the time is short and the end is here!

1 Comment

  • Comment Link March 11, 2014 5:14 pm posted by Anita Mayes

    There is levity in the Bible, but you ain't found it yet...all you have found is garbage. Explore something else...

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