Living the Bible

The Laugh-o-meter (Genesis 21:1-7)

July 06, 2020 Season 3 Episode 25
Living the Bible
The Laugh-o-meter (Genesis 21:1-7)
Show Notes

Have you ever heard of the "laugh-o-meter"? When I was young, there was a show on TV in which kids would try to make the audience laugh with jokes and funny stories. They then measured the number and volume of audience laughs with this "laugh-0-meter" and the one who had the most and loudest laughs won.

If we applied the "laugh-o-meter" to Genesis 21:1-7, it would go into the red zone. What caused so much laughter? It wasn't jokes and funny stories, but rather the fulfillment of God's promises.


  • The Lord visited as he had said (1a)
  • The Lord did as he had said (1b)
  • The Lord gave a child as he had spoken (2)

God's promises are not for doubting but for depending. 

What's the result of God's promises? Laughter!


  • Sarah’s doubting laughter (Gen. 18:12-15)
  • Sarah’s believing laughter (Gen. 21:6-7)

The laugh-o-meter started rising in verse 3, when they named their son "Laughter." It went into the orange zone in verse  six when Sarah exploded with joy as she looked at her baby boy. "God has made me laugh." Or as the ESV puts it, "God has made laughter for me." That's not just her son, but her feelings. God manufactured laughter for Sarah and gave her it to enjoy. The laughter then goes into the red zone when Sarah anticipates everyone who hears this news will laugh with her." God makes us and others laugh with joy when he keeps his promises.

Doubt manufactures depression, but faith manufactures delight.


Let's rejoice in the fulfillment of God’s promises, especially the promise of his Son and our Savior (Luke 2:10–11). Thank God for the joy of salvation through the birth of Jesus Christ. Isaac made many laugh for a short time, but Christ makes multitudes laugh for all time. God makes laughter for his people by making promises to his people.

This episode of Living the Bible lines up with Expedition 5: Day 1 in  Exploring the Bible Together: A 52 Week Family Worship Plan and Exploring the Bible: A Bible Reading Plan for Kids. You can catch up with previous episodes of the Living the Bible podcast here or subscribe on iTunes, Spotify, and Google Podcast.