I’ve seen and heard this joke before — but ran across it again and feel the need to share it with you:
At a recent pastor’s retreat each minister in attendance was asked the following question: “How many people does it take to screw in a light bulb?” The answers were as follows.
A Presbyterian Pastor responded, “None. If God wants the bulb screwed in he is sovereign and will do it himself without human effort.”
A Charismatic Pastor replied, “None. The bulb doesn’t need to be changed. We should pray that it be healed.”
A Pentecostal Pastor said, “None. We simply need to cast out from the bulb the demon of darkness.”
The Fundamentalist Pastor stated, “None. We shouldn’t even enter the room because we need to keep ourselves separate from all darkness.”
A Baptist Pastor responded, “None. If we allow physical contact between a person and the bulb it might lead to dancing.”
The Wesleyan Minister replied, “None. If we just show the bulb its need, it already possesses the power to screw itself in.”
A Non-Denominational Pastor said, “None. We don’t want to make the bulb feel unwanted or uncomfortable.”
This poll provides one clear conclusion: it’s no wonder pastors are always in the dark.
This joke is what keeps me up at night about Christianity and God’s people. and that is not a joke. Take that to the bank and cash it.
The problem with this joke is that it’s an attempt at humor — one that mentions how lots of different denominations, that are supposedly all part of the same Body of Christ, handle the same situation.
The punchline is the problem.
No one solved the problem.
All these pastors got together to discuss an issue. The light is out. It needs maintenance and help. They all debated theologically on why no one should actually change the bulb. No one should actually bring light to this room because of tradition and human thought processes that have been written down over the years.
Anyone else see a problem with this?
See parallels to real life?
Sometimes, there are moments in the church when we are more focused on wanting to be right and sounding intelligent than actually shining Christ’s light to God’s people. How many dark rooms could have been illuminated in the time it took these pastors to argue in circles about their theological beliefs?
Sometimes pride, like this, holds me back. What holds you back?