What is a Christian view of comedy?

Ecclesiastes 3:1–9 talks about there being a time for everything, and specifically includes laughter: "For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: … a time to weep, and a time to laugh …" (Ecclesiastes 3:1, 4). Proverbs 17:22 says, "A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones." Often laughter and joy go hand-in-hand. The Bible has much to say about joy, telling us to rejoice always (1 Thessalonians 5:16; Philippians 4:4) and naming joy as a fruit of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22–23). Our ultimate source of joy is God Himself (Psalm 16:11; John 15:9–11). We also take joy in the things of this life, and comedy can be part of that.

Even the Bible has moments of comedy, either in relaying events that occurred or in its choice of verbiage. One might contend that there is comedy in nature—just take a look at the okapi, the platypus, and the hippopotamus. God is not all-serious or opposed to humor. We are created in God's image. No doubt that image is marred due to sin, but the ability to appreciate comedy is common to humanity. It seems it is part of God's design of humans, and something He appreciates.

That being said, there is appropriate and inappropriate comedy. Ephesians 5:4 says, "Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving." Humor that degrades people, centers around impurity, and/or mocks God is wrong. We are called to be holy (Ephesians 1:4; 1 Peter 1:15–16). We are told, "whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things" (Philippians 4:8). There is plenty of clean comedy that fits the guidelines of Philippians 4:8. Christians are free to fully enjoy, and even create, such comedy.

There is nothing wrong with comedy in general, and Christians should be known for their laughter and joy in appropriate settings and context. We are free to enjoy comedy that does not dishonor God. In fact, we can bring glory to God by taking joy in the funny things of life and thanking Him for it.


Related Truth:

What is the key to experiencing joy in the Christian life?

What is the difference between joy and happiness?

What does liberty in Christ mean? Are there restrictions to how I exercise my Christian liberty?

How can I increase in spiritual maturity?

How can I be an effective witness for Christ? How can I effectively witness to a lost world?


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