Ellis Washington
Symposium--God's gonna make you laugh
By Ellis Washington
December 12, 2015

Socrates (470-399 B.C.) was a famous Greek philosopher from Athens, who taught Plato, and Plato taught Aristotle, and Aristotle taught Alexander the Great. Socrates used a simple but cleverly profound method of teaching by asking penetrating, revelatory, and psychologically probing questions. The Greeks called this form Dialectic – starting from a thesis or question, then discussing ideas and moving back and forth between points of view to determine how well ideas stand up to critical review, with the ultimate principle of the dialogue being Veritas – Truth.

"I never jest at the sacred." But "all the mortal world" was fair game.

~ Socrates (via Paul Johnson)

"If you want to know where God is moving, he is moving in a direction that is impossible. And when folks think it is impossible, they'll laugh at you, but God is going to make them laugh with you."

~ Bishop Noel Jones, Sermon – God's gonna make you laugh



Bishop Noel Jones

Doubting Spirit
{represents negative dimensions of human nature}

Socrates: What is Recognition? What is Revelation? What is Laughter? How does God use the vicissitudes of Life – the trials, the tribulations to eventually transform your vision, your existential struggles from Recognition of the earthly and material things to Revelation of the Metaphysical and Spiritual dimensions?

In this Symposium we will discuss the large gulf between Recognition and Revelation of the things of God that is so vast, so inestimable that once you reach the other side of the paradigm, and look over your shoulder of what you were redeemed from, that God is going to make you laugh.

Bishop Noel Jones: You have to be a recipient to come into revelatory knowledge of God... It's God then who has to reveal Himself. Now I want to deal with the word reveal as opposed to the word recognize, because God is never recognized, He's always revealed... If you look at Jesus who happens to be the expressed image of God, you would wonder to yourself – How could they miss who He was? And oftentimes people look at your ordinariness and they cannot detect the power of anointing that runs within you. Because your anointing is never recognized, it's always revealed.

Let me give you an example: If you are going to pick a mate as a Child of God, don't pick a mate because of outward pulchritude (physical beauty). You have to allow your Spirit to roam in the vicinity of the pulchritude and see if you can discern the Spirit that's in the package of the body. Because oftentimes you can have a wonderful package and not have anything in it. {laughter} It is impossible then simply to understand what is going on in the Spirit if there is no revelation. And you can recognize pulchritude and you can recognize outward appearances, but in order to get into the depth of the Spirit there has to be revelation...

For the Scripture talks about the righteousness of God is revealed "from faith to faith." This is why there is a revelation when you receive the Holy Spirit because you believe to receive and then when He speaks through you then you know you have Him. When I know I have Him that's one layer – Now I'll believe Him for something else, then when He reveals Himself, then I'll believe Him for something else. So I believe, He reveals. I believe, He reveals. I believe, He reveals – The more I believe, the more He reveals. So as I keep on believing, He keeps on revealing until one day I will know Him as he knows me. And so it's His consistency in His revelatory expression that strengthens me to greater faith.

If He then is not faithful and consistent with me then my faith can't grow. He has to be faithful to me and dependable, and reliable in order to build me into a giant. If He is sometimes there and sometimes gone; if He is sometimes with me, and sometimes against me; if I can find Him sometimes, and can't find Him other times, then I will be wavering in my faith. If He wants me to be steadfast, He's got to be faithful to me. Look over your life and think about the number of times He brought you out – and sometimes we get nervous as if He will not bring us out the next time. All I need to do is tap you on your shoulder and tell you, "Look back to the last time and see what He did."

Socrates: Bishop, can you give this Symposium a more detailed and substantive example of how the Lord developed your faith personally to move beyond mere Recognition of Him (which in this metaphysical paradigm we cannot achieve) to Revelation – the domain of the metaphysical and Veritas (Truth) where God is discovered?

Bishop Noel Jones: I remember years ago when I was in Longview, Texas and I had flown to some place and I came back and you know my money was funny and as I came to get in my car, the battery wouldn't work. I was rushing to church and the battery was dead in the street at the airport. I said to myself, {frustrated} "Now Lord, why me? Everybody else around here, they're going fishing and they're going to the racetrack, and I'm trying to go to church – Now what's going on here?" As I spoke a gentleman came and said to me, "Your car won't start?" I said, "No it won't." He said, "Alright I'll jump it, by the way here is a pass. You show it to the man at the gate and go through." Now I didn't have much money and the car was there for two weeks. The man gave me a pass, obliterated all my charges. Now I'm sitting there arguing with God when He is trying to get me out of the place for nothing! {praises to God}

Recognition vs. Revelation – How many times have you been embarrassed because God was trying to reveal Himself and you are arguing about your situation? Never go by your situation, always go by revelation that God will bring you out alright. Touch someone and say, "He's goin' to make you laugh."

Socrates: The magisterial English historian, Paul Johnson in his 2011 book, Socrates: A Man of Our Times, wrote these words regarding my philosophy – particularly concerning the ideas of Irony and Humor which I find especially instructive here:
    Some people found Socrates' ironic tone puzzling simply because it was part of his apparently lighthearted approach, in which quite straightforward jests and fun played a part. Alcibiades refers to Socrates' "endless ironizing and jesting." There is a distinction here, but also a confusion. Socrates seems to have felt that another missing element of Periclean Athens was a sense of humor. Or rather, though the tragedies of the Big Three, and the comedies of Aristophanes (and others [Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides]), presented the two sides of the human predicament, the distinction was too formal and absolute, as though the impresarios at the Theater of Dionysus were to say to the audience, "Today we are giving you a good laugh." Whereas, Socrates felt, what was required was the ability, which he possessed, to slip deftly and almost imperceptibly from seriousness to laughter and back again – the essence of sophisticated communion.
Bishop Noel Jones: Whenever God makes a covenant there is something lopsided about it. The first thing is: How do you make an agreement with me when you're going to live forever and I'm going to live for a brief period of years? ... Well the first thing He indicates is it's not just for you, but it's for your posterity and their posterity. Now let me tell you this, when God makes an agreement with you He's going to break the generation curse in your life and fix it so that your children will never have to deal with what your father put on you! – When God fixes your life, He's going to fix everybody's life around you.

Socrates: How do I know it's God?

Bishop Noel Jones: The only way to know it's God is for God to say it to me. In the midst of circumstances that are totally different than what I'm looking at, God now says something to me. Now you have to understand that the circumstances have to be completely contradictory to what He said. Because if the circumstances are conducive to what you are seeing in your vision or dreaming in your dream, then you cannot identify the vision with anything different than what you are experiencing.

You see what God has to do is God has to come in totally different from what you are going through, because if He does not you will think that it's what you are going through that led you to where you are. But No! God waits until it's nothing but pure Hell, then He comes and promises you Joy! {praises to God} And you're so caught by it. You're saying to yourself, {incredulous} "Who is talking to me? My mama don't have anything. My daddy don't have anything and somebody is telling me I'm about to be blessed!? Now who is talking to me? Give somebody high five and say, "God's gonna make you laugh." Touch somebody and say, "I need a crazy blessing!"

God just cannot come into what you decided to and then show himself as distinct, because if you decided to do it – (Can I take you to another level right here?) There is a difference between you asking God to help you and God recruiting you for his revelation. Oh, there's a difference because you will ask God to help you to do something that is humanly possible. God is going to recruit you to do something that is totally, humanly IMPOSSIBLE! If you want to know where God is moving, he is moving in a direction that is impossible. And when folks think it is impossible, they'll laugh at you, but God is going to make them laugh with you in a minute! – It's the situation then that makes it God because the promise must be distinct from the situation. It must be God moving in a way saying...

Doubting Spirit: He couldn't be talking to me. How could he be talking to me? I don't have the qualifications. I don't have the ability. Most folks think I'm not going to be anything anyway. How can He be talking to me?!

Bishop Noel Jones: {deliberately} You're the one He wants to talk to! He wants to talk to folk who know it couldn't have come from anybody but [God]. Touch your neighbor and say,

Doubting Spirit: "Is he talking to you? Is he talking to you?"

Bishop Noel Jones: Yes he's talking to you. The one that they said would never be anything. The one that they said could never achieve. The one that they said could never be holy, never walk with God. God walks right over and whispers in the night ... "Come go with me." The promise of God has got to rise up in your worst moment, and when He gets ready to give you a promise He distinguish Himself so totally. He will let the Devil have free reign. But let me tell you this: Once God makes you a promise, the Devil can't kill you until it comes to pass.

Before He changes you, He gives you a promise. He forces you to look to the future and what He says is, "Don't go by anything in your past, because if I'm going to do something new with you it begins with a promise. I'll speak it before it happens.

Now remember Isaiah 43:13-17 for instance. And one of the marvelous things about God – and if you're not careful you'll forget the placing of Isaiah. Isaiah is speaking to Israel before they go into captivity and He is speaking to them about the horrific destruction of the captivity and He speaks to them about the deliverance. Now notice, He speaks about destruction before destruction, and He speaks about deliverance before destruction and He's making a point. What He is saying to the children of Israel is when you get into captivity, don't be disgusted because I told you –

You were going in, so if you went into destruction and I told you you're coming out, you can look at the destruction and begin to praise me for the deliverance. Because the same God who put you in, is the same God that's bringing you out – And "I am God and beside me there is no other." Touch your neighbor and say, "I cried yesterday, but God's gonna make me laugh!" Touch three people and say, "I'm getting ready to laugh." God showed me some things that are about to take place and I am getting ready to just – {laughter and praises}

You must not allow (for God's sake) apprehension to overcome anticipation. Sometimes we become apprehensive because of what we been through. And many times what we've been through have left indelible prints on our minds and it takes the strength of the promise of God and faith in the promise to overcome the negatives of our past. Touch your neighbor and say, "Get over your past... God wasn't with you then... You didn't have a promise then." The promise of God blocks the consequences of your past because the consequences come from past actions, but the promise of God brings to a halt the consequences of the past and begins to renew your tomorrow. So God says my promise separates the Old You from the New You.

Socrates: Bishop, would you concur with me therefore that the metaphysical differences between the Old You from the New You is the tiny adverb... YET?

Bishop Noel Jones: Touch your neighbor and say, "You always say yet as a child of God."
  • Do you have the car? I don't have it... Yet.

  • Do you have the house? I don't have it... Yet.

  • {cynical song} Do you have a husband? I don't have him... YET!
There's always Yet, because Yet says, "It ain't here, but it's on the way, and God is gonna make me laugh!" Somebody is gonna be blessed tonight. Somebody is gonna have power to walk out of here tonight and tell the Devil, "I'm gonna laugh my way through life... God!"

I hate to wait. I want [God's blessing] right now. But if I get it right now, then I would not develop character, because my character says, "I need to be strong to wait on God in spite of how longs it takes." Because what God promised me takes a little time to prepare. Because He ain't just giving me anything; He's giving me the best of everything and He ain't rushing to put it together. Not only that, but sometimes the gift is really too good for the person receiving it...

You want the best man in town, but are you yet the best woman in town? It don't make sense for God to give his best to somebody who ain't ready yet, so while you waiting on the gift, He's raising your values – God's gonna make you laugh!

Bishop Noel Jones: {channeling the Holy Spirit} So God waited until Abraham went through his mess. He kept on denying Sarah, kept on acting like she was his sister and not his wife and God had to bring him through that for him to understand that, "If I promised you a child, the Devil can't kill you." Sarah understood that she was not in the hand of Abraham, because when he sent her into Abimelech's bed, she just crawled right up in it and just waited for God to deliver in the night. And He said [to King Abimelech], "Don't you touch her because she is my anointed child."

He had to get through Hagar – Get through trying to help God – Quit trying to help him, He knows what you need. He knows who you need. And He knows when you need it. You messed up picking yourself. How many times have you've chosen a mess? Quit choosing and sit down, and let somebody chose You!

God knows how to work it out. He promises a man [Abraham] at 75, and you know that's pretty tough, but it must have been possible because at 86 he had a child with Hagar when men (let the record show), said he wasn't quite dead enough. Look at your neighbor and say, "Your situation ain't quite dead enough." "The Devil ain't whupped you quite enough." God is waiting until the jury is out, until the Devil comes back with all of his imps and say, "It ain't gonna happen, just like I told you! God waited too long." The man is now 100 and the woman is 90... Abraham was dead. Sarah was dead. Now they double-dead.

Now here's where God is ready to work because both things have become ridiculous. Touch your neighbor and say, "That's ridiculous!"

Doubting Spirit: Can't no old man that old have a baby with a woman that old – "That's ri-di-cu-lous!"

Bishop Noel Jones: So when Sarah heard it she began to laugh and said, "Somebody must crazy because this ain't goin' to happen!" But I heard the Lord say, "Is there anything too hard for God?" Do I have a child of God in here that has the nerve tell your situation that there is nothing too hard for God?
  • This job is not too hard for God.

  • This house is not too hard for God.

  • This relationship is not too hard for God.

  • This raise is not too hard for God.
I want something ridiculous. Take your neighbor's hand and say, "It takes a ridiculous blessing to make you laugh." A baby at 90 – Fathered at 100 – Just enough to make you laugh... How big is your house? God's gonna give you a house so big, when the neighbors walk by they say, "How many people live in this house?" And you tell them, "Two." They say, "That's ri-di-cu-lous!" God's going to give you 3, 4 or 5 cars. And somebody say, "How many cars you have?" And you tell him, "I got 5." And they say, "Are you by yourself?" And you say, "Yes." And they say, "That's ri-di-cu-lous!"

Touch your neighbor and tell them, "That's the kind of blessing I got to have – A ridiculous blessing." How much money you got in the bank? Who blessed you so quick? Last year you were nothing – This year you on the mountaintop. Last year you were hurt – This year you got Victory! Who did it for you? {modulation} God did it. That's ridiculous! When you tell him where He's taking you – Tell him how high you going – They look at you like you crazy and say, "That's ri-di-cu-lous!" And you tell them, "Yeaaahhh, that makes me laugh." – Throw your head back and go, "Ha-Ha!"

Laugh – Laugh at your enemies. Laugh – Laugh at the Devil. Laugh – Laugh at the opposition. {modulation higher} Laugh – Laugh at the depression. {modulation} Laugh – Laugh at Hell. Laugh – Laugh at poverty. Laugh – Laugh at sin. Laugh – Laugh at deceit. Laugh – Laugh at hurt. God is Blessing Ri-di-cu-lous-ly in Dallas, Texas in the House! {Praises to God}

I feel Victory in the House. Shake somebody's hand and say, "You getting ready to laugh." When you walk on the job and they move you a little higher, just laugh. Remember this night. God told me to tell you, "You gonna laugh all the way to the bank." Laugh – all the way to the [marriage] altar. Laugh – all the way. Through heartache – Through sickness – Through pain – Through it all. Somebody gonna look at you and say, "That's ri-di-cu-lous!"

*N.B.: For further reading regarding the Life and Times of Socrates, see this outstanding opus by one of my most enduring intellectual mentors whom I've read for over 30 years – The magisterial and prolific English Historian – Paul Johnson, Socrates: A Man for Our Times (Viking Press, 2011), pp. 84–87.

Book Notice

Please purchase my latest opus dedicated to that Conservative Colossus, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. Here are the latest two new volumes from my ongoing historical series – THE PROGRESSIVE REVOLUTION: History of Liberal Fascism through the Ages (University Press of America, 2015):
However, before the book is officially released to the public, I have to place 100 pre-publication orders (50 orders per each volume). I need your help to make this happen ASAP. Please place your order today for Volume 3 & Volume 4. Of course, if you can order all 100 copies today, the book will become official tomorrow.

Please circulate this flyer to all your email contacts & Facebook/Twitter followers who may be interested in purchasing this opus which will serve as a ready apologetic against the rampant Marxist-Progressive propaganda taught in America's public schools, colleges, universities, graduate schools, and law schools. Thanks in advance to all my friends, associates and colleagues for your invaluable support! Law and History Blog: www.EllisWashingtonReport.com

Invitation for manuscripts

I am starting a new a program on my blog dedicated to giving young conservatives (ages 14-35) a regular place to display and publish their ideas called Socrates Corner. If you know of any young person who wants to publish their ideas on any subject, have them send their essay manuscripts to my email at ewashington@wnd.com.

© Ellis Washington


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Ellis Washington

Ellis Washington is a former staff editor of the Michigan Law Review (1989) and law clerk at the Rutherford Institute (1992). Currently he is an adjunct professor of law at the National Paralegal College and the graduate school, National Jurisprudence University, where he teaches Constitutional Law, Legal Ethics, American History, Administrative Law, Criminal Procedure, Contracts, Real Property, and Advanced Legal Writing, among many other subjects... (more)


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