How do we know Jesus was a woman?

Answer: because, even after he was dead he had to get up and serve people.

Some context may be helpful. I was the only man in a graduate seminar on feminist rhetoric. Along with six other Ph.D. students we were part of a list serve and often sent silly off-handed comments resulting in the above joke being sent. A few minutes later, I received a personal email from the sender apologizing. “Tim, I sent out the joke and didn’t consider how offensive it may have been to you! I didn’t mean to demean your religion. Hope you’re not mad.” I shot back an email telling her my wife and I were still laughing.

Her response to sending the joke was telling. How easily do those outside the Christian community think we are offended? Are we seen as people devoid of the ability to laugh at ourselves? Or, laugh at all? I’ve been greatly encouraged how many contributors to the Christ Animated Blog have tackled the issue of incivility and polarization that seems to have gripped our nation, communities, and higher education (Steven McMullen, Polarization and the Academy; Perry Glanzer, The Demise of Gentleness; Crystal Downing, Aiming for Abnormality). As the co-director of Biola University’s newly launched, Winsome Conviction Project, I am trying to think of new and unexpected ways for Christian communicators to engage an increasingly hostile communication climate.

In the full Christian Scholars Review essay, Tim Muehlhoff addresses the oft-neglected aspect of rhetorical humor and how G.K. Chesterton might serve as a much-needed guide in today’s argument culture.

Read the full article in the Christian Scholars Review.