Does God Laugh With Us?
We all agree that laughter is good for the soul Laughter increases endorphins, (the chemical in the brain that give us a feeling of wellbeing). It feels good to laugh and the more deeply we can laugh the more significant the effect on our overall mental and physical health. Laughter is a gift from God.
“And Sarah said, God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me.” Genesis 21:6
Even in the Law of Moses days were set aside as feast days for the purpose of enjoyment and times of celebration and refreshing which naturally included laughter, singing, dancing, the enjoyment of drink particularly the fruit of the vine, wine in varying varieties during harvest times. Jesus’ first miracle was at such a feast, a wedding, where He turned water to wine.
"A feast is made for laughter, and wine maketh merry …” Ecclesiasties10:19
Now the Scriptures do not directly speak to the question of God laughing with us but it does strongly imply that He does by virtue of the joy that He has and the pleasure He does take in His relationship with us.
“The Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing.” Zephaniah 3:17
Now it is hard to imagine anyone singing with joy and having no laughter to mingle with it. With God joy is the greater expression of goodwill and pleasure. Laughter is just one by-product of joy. Singing songs of joy is both a catalyst for joy and a by-product of receiving it.
“Is any among you afflicted? let him pray. Is any merry? let him sing psalms.” James 5:13
“Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord…” Ephesians 5:13-19
Joyfulness, speaking and singing life-giving, life-affirming words to one another from the psalms, hymns and spiritual sons of the Lord, adds to our faith, encourages our hope and keeps us in the flow of God’s pleasure with us.
There are two kinds of laughter.
There is laughter that emminates from pleasure and childlike innocence. This is often referred to as being tickled, possessing a healthy sense of humor, keeping a light heart and not getting entangled in the angst of the world. This is laughter that accepts human foibles and benign frailties, our own and others as worthy of mirth as opposed to sorrow and despair. This is also the kind of laughter that accompanies good news, joyful laughter.
Now God has no foibles or human frailties because He is perfect. But, through Jesus Christ, the man, He shares with us in them. Jesus was also perfect, but as a man He was touched by every human emotion we have including laughter.
If we think God has no sense of humor, consider these things, the Dodo bird, ostriches that bury their heads in the sand when they are frightened, the jackass, the platypus, sloths, the cuteness overloads of babies and children’s unique discoveries and expressions of life.
All joy and rejoicing embraces laughter, but all laughter is not a result of rejoicing.
There is also mocking and derisive, laughter. This is the laughter that points to the foolishness of pride and arrogance that motivates the attempts of the enemy to usurp the throne of God and the like. Derisive laughter negates the validity or worth of someone or something. Mocking laughter expresses disdain for what it considers inferior or beneath the lofty position of the one judging it so.
The question that some have asked is this, does or can God just sit alone with us and enjoy a good belly laugh about anything? Can we be that close to Him?
The answer is yes and yes. He does it through that loved one who knows us so well and yet loves us any way. He does it through children whose innocence is safe with us and they laugh just because we are laughing. He does it when we think we are alone but He is always there and we have a thought that just gets us going with laughter. That’s God hanging out with us and enjoying life together.
Eccl. 3:24; Luke 6:21; Psalm 126:2 KJV; Psalm 16:11; ESV; Psalm 47 ESV; Job 8:21 ESV