Book Review: The Sacred Art of Joking by James Cary

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We might think that people won’t get easily offended in this post Christian and social media saturated age. But that’s not the case especially when we joke about someone’s religion. James Cary sets out to explain this and other issue surrounding humor and Christianity in this book, The Sacred Art of Joking.

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The title is one reason I requested a review copy and I think people who might not even be familiar with the author will do that also. The catchy title grabs hold of me. We’ll it did deliver the goods but not with some rough parts. For those who are not familiar with some references it will be a bit bumpy. Also there are parts that really nailed it and some parts that took you off the rail. Nevertheless, discussion about how humor works, the French satire Charlie Hebdo, and why comedians don’t usually poke fun with Islam are some of the highlights of this book. By that you’ll consider The Sacred Art of Joking a worthwhile read.

The Sacred Art of Joking primarily seeks to present comedy as a part of the Christian experience and it did in some point. Cary raises some concern on how jokes are presented in either in church or secular setting. Cary wants us to consider the comedy found in the Scripture and presents the Bible a dark and gritty book.  A delightful and fresh read for those the curious on a Christian perspective on using humor from a comedy writer.

My verdict:

4 out of 5

Read quotes from the book by clicking this link.

The Rebel’s Dictionary: Swoonies

The Rebel’s Dictionary injects humor and satire to made up words. TRD’s goal isn’t to poke fun on individuals or use these words to label a person or entity.  By using funny words as jump off point, TRD aims to discuss serious issues concerning Christians, the church and Christianity at large. At the end of every entry, TDR includes biblical and practical answers to such inquiry. That’s what TRD is aiming for. 

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The Rebel’s Dictionary Entry #1

Swoonies (noun) – Refers to a group of people who believes in the swoon theory. It’s a combination of swoon as in the swoon theory (the belief) and Moonies, followers of the Unification Church, a religious cult lead by Sun Myung Moon (that’s were the Moon in Moonies came from) from Korea. Although swoonies doesnt adhere to the teaching of the Unification Church, the number of followers holding to such belief, is enough to call them as a cult. Some of their holy books are Holy Blood, Holy Grail and The DaVinci Code.

 

Reality Check: Sometimes lies never dies. But so is truth. In fact truth, has a eternal imprint that can outlive lies. Lies are only temporal. Truth can stump it out. We just need to boldly stand and proclaim it. If swoon theory gives you problems in reaching out skeptics, here are some links that will help you:

Got Questions: What is Swoon Theory? Did Jesus survive the crucifixion?

Desiring God: Historical Evidence for the Resurrection

Stand To Reason: The Medical Accuracy of John’s Description of Jesus on the Cross

Credo House: Jesus Didn’t Die from Crucifixion (The Swoon Theory)

 

 

Book Review: The Real Martin Luther by Josh Hamon and Brynn James

mb26cp3We all want to read a book that has something to do the occasion to make us more appreciative on the event. Come Reformation Day 2018 and a book came to me that is quite not the book I’m expecting read. Its bio book about a certain Reformer that has a concoction of history, humor and cartoons in it.

The Real Martin Luther is a bio book for the rest of us. The reasons are from being too lengthy or too boring to read.   Josh took Luther from the stained glass and introduces him as a human flaws and all. I think every biography book strives to present the person as ordinary as possible so we can easily relate on whom he was and what he has done.  The Real Martin Luther goes beyond that by injecting humor to the narrative. It’s getting the low down on Martin Luther without hitting below the belt. Luther wasnt drag to the mud here.  This book reminds me of Plato and a Platypus Walks into a Bar… adding comedy to a boring subject.

The artwork is awesome and also hilarious. Brynn James sets the tone on how we should visualize the book with just the right artwork style. She then puts some millennial and hipster references here and there to poke fun to Luther. Sometimes it complements the text and sometimes it’s a standalone humor. My only hopes for future volumes are that they go all out in artwork as in turn it into a comicbook.

This book is the first volume of the Holy Misfits series so we should expect there is more of this stuff. You’ll finish The Real Martin Luther not really laughing so hard to forget it all together, but with a fresh outlook on this reformation hero. A bit bold and a bit uncomfortable for readers who usually digest the usual biography book. But then again this is a totally different bio book. It’s history that is entertaining. This book is definitely a must read (re-read) for everyone.

My verdict:

5 out of 5

(The review copy of this book is provided by the author)