Wrath, punishment, and keeping commandments aren’t all there is in scriptures, humor too. Here are five of the funniest moments in the scriptures. These are ideal to share with young people.
1. Balaam and His Talking Donkey
We begin our countdown from the book of Numbers 22:21-39 with Balaam and his talking donkey.
The king got scared
The King of Moab is looking through his window sipping on a cup of coffee. To his surprised, way in the distance, he saw what looks like people. It’s the children of Israel camping in tents and waiting on God’s instructions before they move.
Upon seeing them, he begone shaking in his shoes. The sight of Israel was too overwhelming to bear. So, he calls for one of his top officials and instructs them to call Balaam the prophet.
The king calls for help
These officials then left Moab and rehearse before Balaam the king’s message. The message doesn’t excite Balaam at first, but the officials convince the prophet to follow them.
Still reluctant to go, he paused for a while. Should I go? Should I stay?
Balaam sees money
Balaam saddles his donkey and follows the king’s servants. On his way to Moab smiling, singing, and with money on his mind, he made haste to Moab.
The donkey sees an angel
But his donkey wasn’t having any of it, especially seeing an angel standing with a sword in the street. What happens next is nothing short of prime-time comedy. The donkey seeing the sword in the angel’s hand took off running. What else is he supposed to do?
Balaam is angry with his donkey
By now, Balaam is angry and has started beating the donkey. The donkey, unable to bear the whipping, cried out, “what have I done to you to make you beat me these three times?” (Numbers 22:28).
What!!! A talking donkey! Are you kidding me!
How about you, have you ever heard a talking donkey before? Well, it’s all in the Bible.
All jokes aside, the average person would have taken off running with speed, “forgetting the money, gold, and even the silver, but not Balaam, he wanted the “Benjamin.”
The moral of the story: Appreciate what you have, though small be content.
2. Adam Blames Eve and Eve Blames the Serpent
Adam and Eve find themselves in a beautiful garden, the garden of Eden, to dress and take care of it.
As any good father would, God gave them instructions to follow: “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die,” (Genesis 2:16-17).
The serpent eavesdropping
However, the serpent was nearby, and he heard the conversation. The serpent was on to something big. And being clever, he decided to play a little game with Eve and said: “Did God say, you must not eat from any tree in the garden?” (Genesis 3:1).
Eve replied: “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, you must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die,” (Genesis 3:2-3).
The snake device a plan
The serpent, not willing to retreat said: “You will not certainly die” (Genesis 3:4). Tasting victory on its tongue, the serpent draws for his final straw and said: “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil,” (Genesis 3:5).
Eve got hooked
The words of the serpent were like music to Eve’s ears and honey on her tongue. She is now itching to eat the forbidden fruit. I can hear her saying: “finally, at last, you are mind, God isn’t here to stop me.”
The sight of the fruit hanging tantalizingly on the tree was too overwhelming for her. She tries to control herself by biting her lips, but she can’t take it anymore.
Let’s eat, it’s too much, perhaps she said. Eve knew she had disobeyed God, and she wasn’t about to go down alone. So, she made sure Adam got in trouble too.
Here comes the best part. God returns to the garden to check up on his creation. But to his amazement, he finds the couple hiding and refusing to come to Him because they were naked.
Something was fishy, so God said: “Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?” (Genesis 3:11).
Adam Blames Eve’ it’s wasn’t me
Adam wasn’t in the mood to take any blame. He looked around, and seeing Eve, said: “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it” (Genesis 3:12).
Eve blames the snake; it wasn’t me
God’s wrath was about to explode, and Eve, knowing that God wasn’t messing around, saw the serpent and said: “The serpent deceived me, and I ate” (Genesis 3:13).
The snake stands alone, blame me, it’s me
God now turns to the serpent and said: “Because you have done this, cursed are you above all livestock and all wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life (Genesis 3:14)
I can imagine the serpent looking for someone to blame, but he found no one. So, he took the blame.
God says to get out
Adam and Eve, by now thought they had gotten off the hook, they were probably high-fiving each other. But God wasn’t done yet. He looked at Adam and Eve and said: “Get out of my garden.” Talk about the blaming game gone wrong!
The Moral of the story: it’s better to obey and be safe than to disobey and be sorry later. Blaming others for your mistakes won’t get you very far but in trouble.
3. Naaman is Furious with Elisha
Naaman is a great man, the commander of the army in Syria. He is powerful, wealthy, and his presence draws a crowd. But one problem; He has a condition called leprosy.
Go to Elisha
At the time, there was no one in his country capable of healing him. But one of his Israeli maids told him to go to a prophet called Elisha.
At Elisha front door
Naaman pulls up at Elisha’s front door with his entourage and many gifts. Elisha knew he was there and sent Gehazi, his servant to tell Naaman to go and dip seven times in the Jordan River.
The dirty river
The Jordan River was the dirtiest in Israel. So, Naaman is understandably furious by the prophet’s instructions. After all, he’s a man of great stature whose presence demands the best.
Naaman refuses to dip
Naaman doesn’t like the idea and wasn’t going to look stupid, no not today, I can imagine him saying.
Naaman is going home
So, he turns around and heads for home. He isn’t concern about healing anymore. On his way home, probably upset, he looked to his entourage and said: “I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy. Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? Couldn’t I wash in them and be cleansed?” (2 Kings 5:11-12).
Do you agree with Naaman’s point of view? Certainly not. Had I woken up with leprosy, the very sight of it over my body would’ve caused me to run and dip myself seventy times in the river.
But come to think of it, Naaman’s thoughts were perhaps. “I’m well dressed in kingly garments; who does Elisha thinks I am, a nobody?”
Naaman servant speaks
But one of his servants said: “My father if the prophet had told you to do some great thing, would you not have done it?” (2 Kings 5:13).
Still upset with the idea, Naaman looks at the servant, then looking at his skin, he thought about his wife, children, and even his PlayStation 3 (just kidding).
It’s hilarious to me how Naaman’s pride was greater than his need to be helped. Or maybe he just wanted the prophet’s attention. “Come outside and touch me prophet Elisha, just don’t send me to that dirty Jordan River”.
I don’t know about you, but it’s difficult to visualize if Naaman went home happy or sad, but it was funny anyway.
Moral of the story: don’t allow pride to rob you of your blessings.
4. Haman Can’t Stand Mordecai
Haman is a powerful ruler in King Ahasuerus’ kingdom. Mordecai is the uncle of Ester, King Ahasuerus’ wife. But Haman doesn’t like Mordecai or any of the Jews. So, Haman being a smart man, devise a brilliant plan with his wife to hang Mordecai and then execute all the Jews.
King Ahasuerus can’t sleep
One night, King Ahasuerus is trying to sleep but he can’t. Maybe he’s stressed and needs a break. Anyway, he gets up from his bed and commands his servant to bring the record-keeping book to him. The servant then brings the book. The king opens the book and notices Mordecai’s good deed.
The king then calls his servant for the second time and said: “What honor or dignity has been bestowed on Mordecai for this?” (Esther 6:3). And the servant replies “Nothing has been done for him” (Esther 6:4).
King Ahasuerus intending on honoring Mordecai begins to think of ways to honor him. His thoughts proving unfruitful, he calls and inquires who is standing in the hallway. The reply is Haman (the enemy of Mordecai).
King Ahasuerus calls for Haman
The king then says to the servant: “let Haman come.”
The servant obeys the king and calls Haman. The thought of the king calling Haman excites him. So, he runs into the king’s chamber. With Haman standing before the king, the king says to him “What shall be done for the man whom the king delights to honor?” (Esther 6:6).
Haman thinks he’s the man
Haman being a top official thinks the king is referring to him. So, he replies: “For the man whom the king delights to honor, let a royal robe be brought which the king has worn, and a horse on which the king has ridden, which has a royal crest placed on its head. Then let this robe and horse be delivered to the hand of one of the king’s most noble princes, that he may array the man whom the king delights to honor. Then parade him on horseback through the city square and proclaim before him: Thus, shall it be done to the man whom the king delights to honor!” (Esther 6:7-9).
Haman gets the shock of his life
The king then replies: “Hurry, take the robe and the horse, as you have suggested, and do so for Mordecai the Jew who sits within the king’s gate! Leave nothing undone of all that you have spoken,” (Esther 6:10). Bahahaha! Talk about a sudden nightmare!
Haman leaves the king’s chamber with a pretending smile. He does not want to honor Mordecai, but he agrees.
The thought of traveling through the city and honoring Mordicai was a big shocker for Haman. But he had was to do it anyway.
Moral of the story: love your enemies and wish them well because every mischief you plan against them will return to hunt you.
5. Jacob Stole the Blessings with Food
This is one of my favorites and the funniest bible story in the bible. In Genesis chapter 27, Isaac is dying. He can hardly see, but like every good father, he wants to bless his eldest son Esau before he dies.
Time for blessings
It was normal back then for fathers to bless their children before they died. But the humor in this story is about Isaac who loves food and refuses to bless his son on an empty stomach.
What? Maybe we can call him the eating prophet. But it doesn’t stop there, here’s the ticker and the best part of the story.
While Esau converse with Isaac his father, Rebekah is eavesdropping nearby. Esau wants the blessings, so he leaves home to get the food.
Rebekah conspires with Jacob
Rebekah, Esau’s, and Jacob’s mother love Jacob more than Esau. Jacob is mommy’s boy, and she will do anything for him. So, she calls Jacob and says to him “get two choice young goats so that I can prepare a tasty meal for Isaac, just the way he likes it.”
Rebekah then gives Jacob the tasty meal. She dresses him in Esau’s best clothing and urges him to deceive his father. Jacob doesn’t want to do it, but his mother convinces him. “Talk about a family deception!”
Jacob listens to mommy
Jacob follows his mother’s instructions and takes the food before his father, but Isaac is an old shepherd and knew that something was wrong, it wasn’t possible Esau could’ve returned so quickly.
Isaac is in a hurry to bless
Isaac wasn’t about to question his son, the food smelled wonderful. “Forget the long talking, where is the food? I need to eat, ” Isaac may have said.
Here’s how the Bible has it: “My son, bring me some of your game to eat, so that I may give you my blessing” (Genesis 27:25).
Jacob gets the blessings
“And he came near, and kissed him: and he smelled the smell of his raiment, and blessed him, and said, See, the smell of my son is as the smell of a field which the Lord hath blessed: Therefore God give thee of the dew of heaven, and the fatness of the earth, and plenty of corn and wine: Let people serve thee, and nations bow down to thee: be lord over thy brethren, and let thy mother’s sons bow down to thee: cursed be every one that curseth thee, and blessed be he that blesseth thee (genesis 27:27-29).
Esau returns to his father with his prepared meal, but he soon finds out that his blessings are gone. His response: “Bless me, me too, my father!” (Genesis 27:34). “What a family conspiracy, no wonder Esau was so mad with Jacob.”
Moral of the story: Don’t fall in love with material gains to the point where it leads you astray.
Note: I added my sense of humor to these comical bible stories to highlight the hidden comedy.