Bringing the Text to Life

By Reason of Insanity Mark 3:20-35

By Reason of Insanity

Jesus' family and adversaries thought he was mad. Why?

At a Glance

The insanity defense gets a lot of publicity, but it's rarely used, and when it is, not always successfully. We bring this up because, in today's gospel lesson, Jesus is accused of being crazy. We want to know why such a charge would be made, and whether there's some sense in which the church needs to get its crazy on to fulfill its mission.

Editors' Pick

For material based on today's epistle text, see "Take Heart," June 5, 1994, at

"Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, I ask that you find my client not guilty. Yes, my client had motive. It's established that his fingerprints are all over the crime scene. And there's no doubt that he pulled the trigger. But that doesn't mean he should be convicted. Why not? Because my client is absolutely, positively, 100 percent certifiably insane. He is totally nuts. I rest my case."

We've all seen it used in some cheesy courtroom drama playing on basic cable. Many remember the acquittal of...

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