A preview of this week's Religion & Ethics Newsweekly segment this week on spirituality and humor, complete with an angry-looking Jesus (from a familiar basilica).
LAWTON: Part of the problem in the Christian world, Martin says, is a distorted view of Jesus.
MARTIN: We focus a lot of the Passion and death of Jesus, which is certainly very important, sometimes to the exclusion of the rest of his ministry, which was, you know, much more extensive and much of his ministry had to do with joyful things: Table fellowship, visiting friends, those kinds of things, so I think we need to just have a little more balance.
LAWTON: According to Bible scholars, many of the parables Jesus told were probably considered pretty hilarious.
MARTIN: Well the idea that someone has a plank in their eye and another person has a speck of dust in theirs would have been funny to somebody. The problem is that because we’re so far away from that culture and that time, we don’t get some of the humor. But for people in first century Palestine the parables would have been laugh-out-loud funny.
LAWTON: Martin says he gets frustrated that in so many churches, the images of Jesus and the saints have serious, anguished or sometimes even angry expressions.
Watch the full video here.