From the Introduction of Thomas Oden's The
of piety's penchant for taking itself too seriously, theology - more than
literary, humanistic, and scientific studies - does well to nurture a modest,
unguarded sense of comedy. Some comic sensibility is required to keep in due
proportion the pompous pretensions of the study of divinity.
the chips pile too high, I invite the kind of laughter that wells up not from
cynicism about theology but from lightness about it. This comes from glimpsing
the incongruity of humans thinking about God. I have often laughed at myself as
these sentences went through their tortuous stages of formation; I ask you to
look for the comic dimension of divinity that stalks every page.
most enjoyable of all subjects has to be God, because God is the source of all
joy. God has the first and last laugh. The least articulate of all disciples
deserves something in between.