So nu, why are we including a "Jewish Humor Page" on our ministry web site??! Well, many reading this page are from non-Jewish backgrounds, and if you're honest, you'll admit that there are many things about Jewish culture you just don't 'get'. Humor has always been a prominent feature of Jewish life, particularly in times of persecution when things were bleak. You'll understand more of the traditional Jewish mindset when you read Jewish humor. At the very least, we'll double the amount of 'hits' this site gets when we publicize the fact that it has "Jokes"!!

"A merry heart makes for a cheerful face"   Proverbs 15:13

An older Jewish woman from Brooklyn goes in search of a famous guru. She takes a plane to India and then a boat up a river, and then hikes into the mountains with local guides. All in all it takes her months of hardship to track down this guru. When she finds him he is in the middle of some kind of ritual which lasts for days and the guru's many followers won't let her see him. Eventually she reaches the hallowed portals. There she is told firmly that due to the long lines she can only say EIGHT words to the guru. "Fine", she says. She is ushered into the inner sanctum where the wise guru is seated, ready to bestow spiritual blessings upon his eager initiates. Just before she reaches his throne she is once again reminded: "Remember, just EIGHT words." Finally the guru is ready to receive visitors and calls for the woman to be admitted. She stands before the famous guru. "Bernie" she says, "it's your mother, time to come home!"

"Rabbi," the man said, "Please explain the Talmud to me."
"Very well," he said. "First, I will ask you a question. If two men climb up a chimney and one comes out dirty, and one comes out clean, which one washes himself?" "The dirty one," answers the man. "No. They look at each other and the dirty man thinks he is clean and the clean man thinks he is dirty, therefore, the clean man washes himself.
"Now, another question. If two men climb up a chimney and one comes out dirty, and one comes out clean, which one washes himself?"
The man smiles and says, "You just told me, Rabbi. The man who is clean washes himself because he thinks he is dirty." "No," says the Rabbi. "If they each look at themselves, the clean man knows he doesn't have to wash himself, so the dirty man washes himself.
"Now, one more question. If two men climb up a chimney and one comes out dirty, and one comes out clean, which one washes himself?"
"I don't know, Rabbi. Depending on your point of view, it could be either one." Again the Rabbi says, "No. If two men climb up a chimney, how could one man remain clean? They both are dirty, and they both wash themselves."
The confused man said, "Rabbi, you asked me the same question three times and you gave me three different answers. Is this some kind of a joke?" "This is not a joke, my son. This is Talmud."

A rabbi and his two friends, a priest and a minister, played poker for small stakes once a week. The only problem was that they lived in a very conservative blue-law town. The sheriff raided their game and took all three before the local judge.
After listening to the sheriff's story, the judge sternly inquired of the priest: "Were you gambling, Father?" The priest looked toward heaven, whispered, "Oh, Lord, forgive me!" and then said aloud: "No, your honor, I was not gambling."
"Were you gambling, Reverend?" the judge asked the minister. The minister repeated the priest's actions and said, "No, your honor, I was not."
Turning to the third clergyman, the judge asked: "Were you gambling, Rabbi?" The rabbi eyed him coolly and replied "With whom?"

A young rabbi was very fond of playing golf. Every chance he would get, he would steal away to the golf course and shoot a couple of rounds. One year, on Yom Kippur, the Holiest day of the year, a day of Prayer and Fasting, he just couldn't help himself. He had such a desire to play that day, and knowing that the course would be fairly empty, he decided to finish the morning service and sneak off for a few quick rounds. As God looked down on the rabbi, one of his assistants gasped in horror. "My Lord, how will you punish this Rabbi for this horrible transgression?", he asked. "Watch and you shall see", said God. He pointed his finger toward the Rabbi, and lo and behold, the Rabbi shot a hole in one! God's assistant was astonished. "Is this what you call punishment?", he asked. "Watch again." was the response. And the finger of the almighty pointed toward the rabbi, and once again, a hole in one! "I am afraid I don't understand.", the puzzled assistant exclaimed. "What kind of punishment is this, allowing him to shoot the best game of his life?" God looked the young assistant in the eye and said "So- who's he gonna tell?"

The story is told of 4 older Jewish ladies who enjoyed getting together in each others' homes.
"My son," says Mrs. Goldenberg, "is a Physicist and heads up a department at the University. Her friends nodded approvingly. "My son," says Mrs. Greenberg, "is a Doctor and is Chief of Surgery at Mt. Sinai Hospital". You must be so proud, they said. "My son," says Mrs. Goldblatt, "is the head of a law firm and president of the bar association". Again, nods all around. "My son," says Mrs. Cohen, "is a Rabbi". "A Rabbi?!" they exclaim, "What kind of career is that for a Jewish boy?"

The waiter at a Jewish Deli serves his customer a whitefish. As he's walking away he overhears his customer talking to the fish. Soon the customer is deep in conversation with his lunch. "So what's the deal here," says the waiter. "You plan on eating it or taking it home and marrying it? "We're just schmoozing," says the customer. "Turns out the fish is from Great Neck Bay. I used to live there. So I was asking him how things are back in Great Neck. "Sure, so what did he say?" asked the waiter. "He said, 'How should I know? I ain't been there in years!

Moshe and Shlomo are walking down the street when it starts to rain, and no little sprinkle either but a real shower. It just so happens that Moshe is carrying an umbrella.
"Nu," says Shlomo. "So when are you going to open the umbrella. "It won't do us any good," says Moshe. "It's full of holes. "So why then did you bring it?" says Shlomo. "Because," Moshe says with shrug, "I didn't think it would rain."

even more JEWISH HUMOR from 20 years ago

In these days of high security in Washington, President Bush was furious that every discussion, no matter how private, about Israel or anything that involved Jews, immediately became public. Determined to find the source of the leak, he instructed both the FBI and the CIA to investigate. Their joint report came back that the Jews had a network called "shul" that was impossible to infiltrate. That was where information was exchanged. To crack the leak, infiltrate the shul. Bush decided that he would handle the matter himself. He called in the head of the FBI's disguise department, who dressed him in a long black coat, put a shtreimel on his head, gave him a long beard and even fake peyos. From an unmarked car, he departed a block from an appropriate Washington shul He walked in undetected and sat himself among the crowd. After a few minutes, in accordance with his instructions, he turned to his neighbor and, in a perfect Yiddish inflection, said, "So? Nu-u-u? Vhat's happening? "Sha!" came the vehement response. "Der President is coming!"

Bernie had never been in an automat before. He stood feeding the apple pie slot with coins until his friend Max tried to stop him. "Bernie, you messugganah, stop! You have eight pies already." Bernie replied "So what do you care if I keep winning?"

The Goldbergs went to pay their respects to their good friend who had just died. As they filed past the open coffin Mrs. Goldberg remarked: "How good he looks, how relaxed, how tanned, how healthy!" "And why not?" replied Mr. Goldberg. "He just spent three weeks in Miami."

A Texan visiting Israel meets a farmer there. The Texan asks him what he does. "I raise a few chickens," says the Israeli. "I'm also a farmer. How much land do you have?" asks the Texan. "Ten acres in front, but almost 40 acres out back. What about your farm?", the Israeli asked. The Texan tells him, "On my farm, I can drive from morning until sundown and not reach the end of my property." "That's too bad," says the Israeli. "I once had a car like that."

A little old lady gets onto a crowded bus and stands in front of a seated young girl. Holding her hand to her chest, she says to the girl, "If you knew what I have, you would give me your seat." The girl gets up and gives up her the seat to the old lady. It is hot. The girl then takes out a fan and starts fanning herself. The woman looks up and says, "If you knew what I have, you would give me that fan." The girl gives her the fan, too. Fifteen minutes later the woman gets up and says to the bus driver, "Stop, I want to get off here." The bus driver tells her he has to drop her at the next corner, not in the middle of the block. With her hand across her chest, she tells the driver, "If you knew what I have, you would let me off the bus right here." The bus driver pulls over and opens the door to let her out. As she's walking out of the bus, he asks, "Madam, what is it you have? " The old woman looks at him and nonchalantly replies, "Chutzpah."

A Synagogue got really fed up with its Rabbi. The Executive Committee met and none-too-reluctantly, concluded that they'd have to let him go. Trouble was - who'd want to take him - especially if it got out that he'd been fired? So the Executive Committee decided to give him a glowing letter of recommendation. It compared the Rabbi to Shakespeare, Moses and even God Himself. The recommendation was so warm that within six weeks the Rabbi succeeded in securing himself a pulpit in a major upwardly-mobile Synagogue 500 miles away, at twice his original salary and with three junior Rabbis working under him. Needless to say, in a couple of months the Rabbi's new employers began to observe some of his many imperfections. The President of the Rabbi's new pulpit angrily called the President of the old Synagogue charging "We employed this man mostly on the basis of your recommendation. How could you possibly compare him to Shakespeare, Moses and even God Himself, when he can't string together a correct sentence in English, when his knowledge of Hebrew is worse than mine and that on top of everything else, he's a liar, a cheat and an all-round scoundrel ?" "Simple," answered his colleague. "Like Shakespeare he has no Hebrew or Jewish knowledge. Like Moses, he can't speak English, and like God Himself - 'Er is nisht kan mentch (He's not a human being!)."

These two Jewish men are sitting in a wonderful deli frequented almost exclusively by Jews in the Jewish section of town. They are talking among themselves in Yiddish. A Chinese waiter comes up and in fluent and impeccable Yiddish asks them if everything is okay, can he get them anything, and so forth. The Jewish men are dumbfounded. "Unbelievable, where did he learn such perfect Yiddish?" they both think. After they pay the bill they ask the manager of the store, an old friend also fluent in Yiddish, "Where did your waiter learn such fabulous Yiddish?" The owner looks around and leans in so no one will hear and says, "Shhhh. He thinks we're teaching him English."

A rabbi and a priest get into a car accident and it's a bad one. Both cars are totally demolished but amazingly neither of the clerics is hurt. After they crawl out of their cars, the rabbi sees the priest's collar and says, "So you're a priest. I'm a rabbi. Just look at our cars. There's nothing left, but we are unhurt. This must be a sign from God. God must have meant that we should meet and be friends and live together in peace the rest of our days." The priest replies, "I agree with you completely." "This must be a sign from God." The rabbi continues, "And look at this. Here's another miracle. My car is completely demolished but this bottle of Mogen David wine didn't break. Surely God wants us to drink this wine and celebrate our good fortune." Then he hands the bottle to the priest. The priest agrees, takes a few big swigs, and hands the bottle back to the rabbi. The rabbi takes the bottle, immediately puts the cap on, and hands it back to the priest. The priest asks, "Aren't you having any?" The rabbi replies, "No...I think I'll wait for the police."

An Orthodox Rabbi was walking home when he noticed his Cantor walking ahead of him. The Rabbi hurried to catch up as he had some important matters to discuss. Much to his dismay, the Rabbi saw that the Cantor had entered a Chinese restaurant. The Rabbi couldn't believe his eyes. He looked through the window and saw the Cantor pointing to the menu and talking to the waiter. He looked again and saw the waiter deliver a tray of food to the Cantor. Then he saw the Cantor take the chop sticks and start eating a traif, non-kosher meal, including pork and shrimp. The Rabbi could no longer contain himself. He burst into the resturant and said, "Moshe, what are you doing?" Moshe looked up and said to the Rabbi, "I don't understand." The Rabbi said, "I just saw you, Moshe, my Cantor, with all this traif food." Moshe said, "Rabbi, did you see me come into this restaurant? " "Yes I did," replied the Rabbi. "Did you see me order the food?" "Yes I did" said the Rabbi. "Did you see me eat the food?" "Of course I did! Why do you think I barged in here?" "Well then," said Moshe, "I don't see the problem. It was all done under Rabbinical supervision!"