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Monday, December 20, 2010

O Come Let Us Show our Teeth

At that time the Feast of the Dedication took place at Jerusalem; it was winter, and Jesus was walking in the temple in the portico of Solomon. John 10:22, 23 (New American Standard Bible)

We seldom stop to think that Jesus enjoyed life and being in the company of festive people. The Gospels tell of Him attending a wedding, being invited into people’s homes for dinner and fellowship and even being in Jerusalem during Hanukah (Feast of Dedication). If we carefully study the life of Christ we do not find a humorless or dour Savior. Some people even believe it is blasphemous to imagine Jesus ever smiled or laughed when He was like us in every respect. Being 100% God He was also 100% human. Instead we find in Jesus a Man who loved to be social and was totally comfortable and happy in every group situation.

Somewhere along the line the view of Jesus’ humanity got skewed into pigeon holing Him into some kind of sourpuss who looked down on those who had something funny to add to a conversation; or who laughed out loud at a party. Can you imagine what a party with that kind of man would be? Dead silence with Jesus sitting in a corner frowning and glowering and an occasional dip of a chip. Don’t enjoy yourself and for heaven’s sake show no merriment in its proper context. God has a tremendous sense of humor. Just look at creation and the many hilarious animal clips on “The Planet’s Funniest Animal Videos.” Studying the Puritans carefully one finds even they enjoyed a good party with fiddles, food and dancing.

Jesus did come to give us life and that to the fullest. He was human in every sense and that would include enjoying event celebrations and entering into gaiety and laughter. I believe He is immeasurably pleased when we enter celebratory occasions with cheerfulness and joy. As we greet one another during this Christmas season let’s laugh and even toast one another with a cup of eggnog and give praise and thanks to the One we celebrate. That’s enough to make anyone smile. Merry Christmas to you all and blessing for a very happy new year.