The Gift of Sarcasm

Its not that I think the traditional spiritual gifts listings are incomplete, but I do think that the gift of effectively using sarcasm or extreme irony is underrated from a Biblical perspective. Paul effectively used sarcasm, and as I was reading this morning, I was comforted in my sarcastic tendencies. In 1 Corinthians 4, Paul is essentially calling out the church leaders of Corinth who began to take themselves, their knowledge, their possessions, and their religion more seriously than their relationship with Christ and the people they were called to reach. Feeding their narcisscism, Paul compliments their richness… That they were kings… that compared to them, the apostles were the lowest of the low:

We are fools for Christ, but you are so wise in Christ! We are weak, but you are strong! You are honored, we are dishonored!

I like to think that when Paul first wrote verse 10, that first ‘so’ looked more like ‘sooooooooo’ and every ‘you’ was in all caps.

Obviously, in reading within the context of Paul’s message to the Corinthian church, they were a group of people concerned with winning at their faith more than winning others to faith, and content to measure their self-worth above bringing meaning to those apart from Christ.

I look forward to studying up on other uses of sarcasm and extreme irony in the Bible, but in the meantime, I need to work on reconciling MY need to be wise, strong, and honored…

For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power. – 1 Corinthians 4:20

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  1. One of my favorite instances of useful sarcasm in the Bible is when Elijah taunts the prophets of Baal by telling them they should shout louder in case he was in the loo.

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