· Vatican City ·

Readings by Rosa Lupoli

Against taboos,
Jesus’ sense of humor

 Contro i tabù, l’umorismo di Gesù  DCM-009
01 October 2022

Klaus Berger, Un cammello per la cruna di un ago?
L’umorismo di Gesù [A Camel Through the Eye of a Needle? The humour of Jesus],
2022 Queriniana

As soon as I saw advertised a book by the refined exegete Klaus Berger on Jesus’ sense of humor, I immediately thought that I might be able to give an answer to those Gospel passages in which we read everything and more, but we are always left with the doubt that we have not yet grasped the meaning.

The author states in the introduction that despite assiduous and profound studies in theology and dogmatics he has never felt his Jesus so close as when he delved into his sense of humor. Therefore, he has sifted through those Gospel passages, such as the camel through the eye of a needle; the amputation of limbs in the scandal of the little ones; the filtering of gnats and the swallowing of camels. In short, those passages where it seems that the paradox, the grotesque, the absurd run through Jesus' words. The author changes perspective and tells us that Jesus uses humor and emphatic imagery both to reveal the smallness of the human mind and to amplify the smallness of everyday actions that are important to God but neglected by men. I imagine Jesus winking at the end of these tirades, these Gospels that we have sweated over during so many years of our education. This is a study book, not a spiritual book; for those who want to make the effort to read Berger’s volume, it is very stimulating.