Awesome Limericks = Free Books

Last week, I ran a contest whereby readers could submit limericks about Christian social justice and win a copy of the new book by Shane Claiborne and Tony Campolo, Red Letter Revolution: What If Jesus Really Meant What He Said?. Below are the winners, as chosen by me based on hilarity and the rules of limericks (which some entrants struggled to obey).

Next week, a similar contest to win copies of Rachel Held Evans’s new book.

And now, without further ado, the winners:

Simon, with two-for-one:

Could parables spoken by Jesus
be stronger than Paul’s exegesis?
Though they mention hell
They fail to dwell
On Topics the epistles lead with.

For example:

A rich man enjoyed himself well
But foolish, he landed in hell
Through thirsting and burning
in torment and yearning
He’s wise, but with no one to tell.

Red letters found in Luke 16:19-31

Dave Burkum:

Christ came preaching that things should be better
For the poor, the oppressed, and the fettered.
More blinded would see,
More captives set free,
If more Christians would read the red letters.


There was a young girl from Kentucky,
Who found all the bickering yucky.
She decided to read,
Red Words planted the seed;
She decided to help the unlucky.


There once was Christian inspired –
to make high-interest loans he desired.
Said his church: “Don’t you see? We embrace Jubilee
And forgiveness is firmly required.”

Ed Taylor:

hey’ll always be with us, you’re saying
But careful the groundwork you’re laying
The poor, you’re ignoring
While money you’re pouring
In buildings designed just for praying

Jim Armstrong:

We argue whose doctrines are right;
which hymns and whose Bibles delight,
while sick and rejected,
and those unprotected,
lie dying just out of our sight.

Rogue Pioneer:

Jesus looked down with concern,
Saying “my goodness, will they never learn?”
that by ignoring the poor
they’re locking the door*
for themselves upon my return

Benjamin Howard:

There was a professor in Philly
Who thought forgetting the poor was just silly
He mentored a student
Who found his words prudent
Though he has hair like Milli Vanilli


Though Jesus proclaimeth God’s reign,
Most Christians regardeth him insane.
So we oppress the poor,
Make profit from war,
And worshipeth companies like Bain.

Charity Jill:

There once was a brand New Monastic,

Whose followers danced crazy and spastic.
They prayed, “God send peace!”
And His Spirit released.
Thus war and poverty got their ass kicked.

I realize that the last two have some meter problems, but I grant them some poetic license.

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  • Patrick

    Tony, I dispute this list of winners based on the simple fact that limericks are supposed to be dirty (or at least suggestive). I should receive a book because mine was the only limerick to use dirty AND sexually suggestive language. I mean, Jesus tells a guy to go suck it! That’s got to count for something.

    • True, that was pretty good. You should try again next week.

      • Patrick

        My above comment was completely tongue-in-cheek, by the way. As is this…

        There once was a man named Tony
        whose contest was a phony.
        He rewarded a cheater
        who used the wrong meter,
        and ignored it when Jesus said, “Blow me.”

        • That escalated quickly!

          • Moulder

            It got out of hand fast…

  • Haha! I dropped out of my grad school poetry class after the second week–I guess it shows.
    Thanks so much, Tony, I’m beyond excited to read this book!

  • JoeyS

    Good picks.

  • I haven’t been to a Baptist seminary,
    so I don’t know how to define Christianity.
    But when I pray to God,
    it may seem rather odd,
    but He never asks me.
    (from The Liberal Limerick @ Facebook)

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