King James Version (KJV)
‘1 Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?
2 The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord, and against his anointed, saying,
3 Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us.
4 He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision.
5 Then shall he speak unto them in his wrath, and vex them in his sore displeasure.
6 Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion.
7 I will declare the decree: the Lord hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.
8 Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.
9 Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.
10 Be wise now therefore, O ye kings: be instructed, ye judges of the earth.
11 Serve the Lord with fear, and rejoice with trembling.
12 Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.’
Rise tired and late, sleep like a corpse and the routine goes on and on. The world has been hit with a certain wind of seriousness that ends up sucking the life out of people. Life is now lived with a sense of nervousness, urgency and uptightness that does not make room for even little things as smiles, reflections, humour much less to talk of laughter.
From the extract of scripture above, we notice a very unassuming but yet striking response from God; LAUGHTER!!!
It is no mistake that laughter is mentioned 41 other times in the Bible; not many as compared to virtues like faith, hope, healing and the like. As one of my tutors puts it, “Every single letter, space and punctuation in the Bible is inspired by God” and therefore laughter is necessary for a very fruitful walk with God. The next question that pops in your mind is HOW? Do not be alarmed, let’s take a walk through scripture.
· Proverbs 1:26 ESV
I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when terror strikes you;
· Psalm 59:8 ESV
But you, O Lord, laugh at them; you hold all the nations in derision.
· Psalm 37:13 ESV
But the Lord laughs at the wicked, for he sees that his day is coming.
These are examples of God laughing in derision at the puny, futile efforts of His enemies.
Proverbs 1 has a good teaching on the subject of wisdom and is also careful to mention God’s laughter. Verse 20 says this: “Wisdom shouts in the street, She lifts her voice in the square”. However, the chapter goes on to say that the people did not want God’s wisdom. God begs them to repent. in verses 23- 26, He says, “Turn to my reproof, behold I will pour out my spirit on you; I will make my words known to you; Because I called and you refused, I stretched out my hand, and no one paid attention; And you neglected all my counsel, and did not want my reproof; I will even laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your dread comes.”
Clearly, it is a very dangerous thing to be a subject of God’s laughter in this circumstance. Therefore, if God can sit in the Heavens and laugh at His enemies why can’t we do same when we face adverse situations?
In the above instances as well notice that God is infuriated at people following vain pursuits. He goes on to foretell of the coming of His Only Begotten son, and promises His true followers a great inheritance. None of the true followers are laughing at this time, but worshiping with reverence, seeking refuge in Him (Psa. 2:12). It is a fearful thing to be the object of God’s laughter, or to take His laughter out of context.
This fact being established, there is still a time to laugh; Ecclesiastes chapter 3, points out that there is a time for everything. Verse 4 says there is “a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance”. Some Christians place themselves under condemnation because they cannot always present a smiling, laughing face. God never intended that we laugh for prolonged periods of time. We will experience many emotions in our Christian walk, we are promised laughter some of the time, but what kind of laughter?
Let’s examine the scriptures, and see how and when God’s people laughed.
We immediately think of Sarah, who laughed when God told her she would have a Son in her old age. I admire Sarah for laughing. I wouldn’t find the news too amusing; Still, laughter is a blessing and a relief to all of us. Laughter is mentioned among the beatitudes found in Luke 6:21 says, “Blessed are you who hunger now, for you shall be satisfied. Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh”.
Isn’t this scripture a comfort to us? Do you long for more of God? Do you hunger after a closer walk with Him? If you truly seek Him through His Spirit and His Word, you shall be satisfied but bear in mind that His Spirit and His word will never act independently. Keep in the Word, keep in His Spirit and keep in His Truth. Are you in a time of weeping now? Sorrow is a process, a teacher, you will climb out of your valley, and you too, shall laugh. God promises it; Hold on to Him, Your time will come. You can’t force genuine laughing. Wait for God to give you your time of laughter.
Along with the blessings of the beatitudes, comes this warning, also concerning laughter. Verse 25 says, “Woe to you who are well-fed now, for you shall be hungry. Woe to you who laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep”. So, don’t be dismayed by cheery-faced people who always seem to be rejoicing and laughing. They too, are in a cycle, and they will mourn and weep when the time comes.
Laughter in itself does not guarantee joy. It’s just for the moment and meant to draw your attention to what God has done, is doing or will do in your circumstance.
Proverbs 17:22 – A merry heart doeth good [like] a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones. Another version of scripture translates, “Being cheerful keeps you healthy. It is slow death to be gloomy all the time (GNT).”
Did you know that some health centers treat patients who suffer from depression, stress and diabetes with “laughter therapy”? Reports claim that laughter therapy cuts health care costs, burns calories, helps arteries, and boosts blood flow. I read this and wonder, “Why sit in depression which will kill you slowly when the solution is right under your nose? Why waste money on depression-relieving therapies when the Greatest Physician (God) has prescribed a solution in a readily-available life manual (The Word of God) to improve your health and bring joy back into your life.
Hitherto, you may not have been aware; today you may have been somewhat enlightened. It is biblical and healthy. Laugh away your troubles, laugh away your sicknesses but be careful not to incur the wrath of God while you do.
GOD has promised in His word; hold fast to HIM, and run with His word. In the meantime, KNOW WHEN TO LAUGH, KNOW HOW TO LAUGH AND ENJOY THE MOMENT WHILE IT LASTS.
A good laugh and long sleep are the two best cures.
Laughter is a tranquilizer with no side effects.
Laughter is God’s sunshine
If it is sanity you are after, there is no prescription like laughter.
Laughter is the closest distance between two people — Victor Borge