Friday, August 28, 2009

NT Pod 10: Did the Apostle Paul have a sense of humour?

Episode 10 of the NT Pod asks "Did the Apostle Paul have a sense of humour?".

It is ten and a half minutes long. Feel free to leave your comments below.

NT Pod Episode 10: Did Paul have a sense of humour? (mp3)

Programme Notes.

Key texts: Galatians 5:12, 1 Corinthians 12:15-26, 2 Corinthians 12:11-13

Thanks to Ram2000, Me and You, for the opening theme, released under a Creative Commons agreement. The brief clip at the end is from Eddie Izzard, Definite Article.


  1. Yes. I think some shy away from describing some of Paul's writing as 'humorous' because of the association of the term with silliness or a sort of immature lack of seriousness about a subject. Obviously Paul is very intentional about his use of humor.

  2. Paul was obviously a very silly man.

  3. Mark,

    Quite interesting. I immediately thought of Larry Welborn's Paul, the Fool of Christ. As you know, he ties in the comic mime Herodas as a rhetorical position for Paul (1 Cor. 2.1-5 and the befuddled orator). I'd add to that Paul makes fun of the Roman Father in 1 Cor. 4, thereby inverting patria potestas in a humourous manner. As for the dark homour, maybe Paul's writings could be a source of comic relief for future Torchwood episodes?

  4. Loved the Eddie Izzard bit at the end.

  5. Hello,

    A very interesting episode, thank you ! When I heard the title I immediately thought of the one bit of humour I'd noticed once when studying the epistle to Philemon. It appears that the name "Onesimus" means "Profitable" or "Useful". In the light of this, doesn't verse 11 of Philemon sound slightly like a pun? "Which in time past was to thee UNPROFITABLE but now PROFITABLE to thee and to me". It seems to me too funny to be simply coincidental.

  6. My wife just reminded me of another section in Acts where Paul shows a DEFINITE sense of humour :

    "And Paul said, I would to God, that not only thou, but also all that hear me this day, were both almost, and altogether such as I am, except these bonds" (Acts 26:29)

    You can just picture a slight smile creeping over his face as he says the last bit of the sentence, can't you!?

  7. I was hoping to hear the Corinthians' response to Paul, as well... ;)

  8. Ha ha, yes. A bit too much swearing there to excerpt that too.

  9. Anyway it is true the Corinthian Church did not respond but we are harvesting all that. Paul did not divide the church only but if you see Islam today and study the Quran thoroughly, you would would find Pauline Teaching and Pauline Theology which they have molded according to their understanding. I studied Islam and it's found also had a dream in cave just as Paul had a vision on the Road to Damascus. Today Muslims stand almsot equal to the Christians in the world and they do not know Jesus.