Footsteps to Follow: Is God Laughing At You?
Is God Laughing at You?
God has a wonderful sense of humor. This is seen clearly in both the Old and New Testaments. God laughs for joy over His people as a father enjoys his children. Conversely, God mocks and laughs at those who oppose Him. One way or another, God is probably laughing at you right now.
The first function of laughter is that of righteous rejoicing. There is nothing more exhilarating than a good laugh about something good. The Bible states, “A merry heart does good like a medicine” (Proverbs 17:22 KJV). Often when I’m zooming around, I find people are too slow. I politely encourage them to “take your time…and hurry up.” They always get a laugh (and pick up the pace!). This is not a gimmick; it’s the overflow of joy that comes from walking with God. According to Nehemiah, “The joy of the Lord is your strength” (8:10b KJV). The Lord shares His joy with His own people, and it is powerful. Those who know Him know this: “for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness [right-living], peace and joy in the Holy Spirit (Romans 14:17 NAS).
When it comes to God’s enemies, He laughs at them before judging them. Consider this verse: “He that sits in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision” (Psalm 2:4). Psalm 37:13 repeats this theme: “the Lord shall laugh at him: for He sees that his day is coming” (KJV). This laughter is a form of mockery as people continually try to overthrow God. Fighting Almighty God was a losing proposition then as it is now. However, people in their pride continue to try, and God continues to laugh.
During an epic battle of faith for the hearts of Israel, the prophet Elijah confronted 850 prophets of Baal in a showdown played out on Mount Carmel. As the false prophets could not produce any results for Jezebel by their continual prophesying [propaganda], Elijah mocked them and said, “Call out with a loud voice, for he is a god; either he is occupied or gone aside, or is on a journey, or perhaps he is asleep and needs to be awakened.” (1 Kings 18:27 NASB). When it was Elijah’s turn, he prayed a short prayer, and the fire of God fell from heaven, consuming the altar, the sacrifice, the stones, and the water completely. When the people realized who was the true God and who was false, the prophets of Baal were executed. I guess Baal slept through the whole thing!
In the style of a rabbinic teacher, the Lord Jesus used ridicule and humor to make clear his important points. Have you ever considered casting pearls before swine? Or having a railroad tie stuck in your eye? Or swallowing a camel? Or a camel going through the eye of a needle? Can tomorrow worry about itself? This is not humor for humor’s sake, but to illustrate and reveal hidden truths. Jesus even mocked King Herod calling him “a fox,” denoting his evil cunning (Luke 13:32).
People mock and scoff at God all the time. They think He is dumb or can’t see or hear what they are doing. He will get the last laugh, and it won’t be funny to them. However, the Lord laughs for joy when these people repent and receive His blessings and show His glory to the world. This joy is the inheritance of all God’s believing people.
This is the reason St. Paul said: “Rejoice in the Lord always, and again I say, rejoice (Philippians 4:4 KJV)!
-Pastor John C. Butler, Wings of Love Community Church, South Williamsport