If you want to piss people off, start telling Jesus jokes. For some reason, folks get their panties in a wad if you suggest anything humorous in relation to Jesus, God, the Bible, any of that stuff. Which brings up the question, did Jesus have a sense of humor. I’d say the answer has to be yes, considering what He had to deal with .
Jesus’ life was about as stressful as it could possibly be. If anyone in history had the weight of the world on their shoulders, it was Jesus. I mean, the guy was the Messiah, the savior of the world. On top of all that, he traveled around with a bunch of doofuses (or is the plural of that doofi?) who habitually missed His point, constantly had to deal with legalists who did their best to twist His words and use them against him and, lived under the occupation of a foreign power that eventually killed Him.
Of course, my life hasn’t been anywhere near as bad as all that, but in my 54 years, there have been when times I was under a bit of stress. I’ve found that one of the best methods of relieving it is humor. It’s one of the reasons firefighters are constantly playing jokes on each other. I can see Jesus doing the same.
Now, Jesus and his disciples were working class guys and that means they would’ve appreciated working class humor. I can just imagine the disciples all sitting around after dinner and Jesus leaning over to John and saying “Pull my finger”. And,John, being the youngest and least experienced (i.e. gullible), falls for it. Puzzled, he reaches over and tugs on our Lord’s extended finger and Jesus cracks off a big one. Of course, the disciples nearly pee on themselves, they’re laughing so hard. Or, after some obscure parable about mustard seeds or fig trees that has them scratching their heads, He starts giggling and says, “Nah, I’m just screwing with you.” There had to be some fun in their lives or they’d never have made it.
After Pentecost, when the disciples finally got it, I like to think Jesus’ sense of humor is one of the things they got. Not Paul, though. Maybe that’s why he argued with Barnabas over taking John Mark with them. It could be that someone played the “pull my finger” trick on Paul one too many times…, which was probably just once.
Now that I’ve thoroughly offended you, I’ll tell you why I say all this. One of the biggies in Christian doctrine is that Jesus was fully divine and fully human, otherwise His act of sacrifice on the cross meant nothing. Denying Jesus’ sense of humor denies His humanity and leaves us with a feeble, emasculated divinity that no one can identify with and negates any idea of atonement. And, that’s not funny at all.