Mark 1:9-11: The Pleasure Principle

By Stephanie Buckhanon CrowderI must admit the title of this article refers me to an unusual source. Yes, as I write a biblical commentary, I cannot help but recall a song that is not rooted in the Bible. It is a pop song – not a hymn, spiritual or sacred anthem – that pricks my attention. I am not a Janet Jackson aficionado, but her song, “The Pleasure Principle” from 1987 has a few lines that are still appealing almost 25 years later: “I’m not here to feed your insecurities. I wanted you … [Read more...]

Matthew 18:15-20: Insiders and Outsiders

By Mark G. Vitalis HoffmanMatthew 18:15-20is an insider's text for outsiders. From Matthew's perspective, Jesus is both warning and assuring those inside the young Christian church. It is a church, however, whose members stand outside the main streams of both religious and civil practice. … [Read more...]


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