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EASTER TABLEAU – written by Tanis Harms

TOPIC:       Jesus’s death, resurrection and grace
SCRIPTURE:   Matthew 1:18-2:18; Luke 2:1-20, 11:27-28
STYLE:       an Easter program of: scripture readings,
.              drama/soliloquies where each character
.              speaks then poses around the cross;
.            songs can be sung by either congregation,
.              or by the characters and/or choir.
Cast:        SCRIPTURE READERS (1 or up to 12),
.            MARY, NICODEMUS, MARY MAGDALENE,
.            MARTHA, THOMAS, PETER, CHILD,
.            PERSON (or PASTOR)
.           (you can choose to do all or some)
Set & Props: cross


.             $15.00 USD to receive a DIRECTOR’S SCRIPT
.                                    (plus sheet music)
.             
how you receive this & package description



SCRIPT:

SONG 1:  "HOSANNA, LOUD HOSANNA"
.         by Jenette Threlfall & Gesangbuch der Herzogel

READER 1  “But now apart from the Law
.         the righteousness of God has been manifested,
.         being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets,
.         even the righteousness of God through faith
.         in Jesus Christ for all those who believe;
.         for there is no distinction;  
.         for all have sinned and fall short
.         of the glory of God, being justified
.         as a gift by His grace through
.         the redemption which is in Christ Jesus”
.         (Romans 3:21-24)

(MARY enters and delivers her soliloquy.)

MARY      It was a blessing to be the mother of Jesus.   2
.         But when someone had called out to Him,
.         saying, “Blessed is the womb that bore You,
.         and the breasts at which You nursed” -
.         Jesus corrected them saying, “On the contrary,
.         blessed are those who hear the word of God,
.         and observe it.”  So you see, I am a human
.         who was born sinful, in need of saving, and
.         I am no more blessed than any other believer.
.         We can ALL draw near to Him as a family member
.         when we accept Jesus as our personal savior.

SONG 2:  “ALAS! AND DID MY SAVIOR BLEED?” (vs.1-2)
.         by Isaac Watts and Hugh Wilson

READER 2  “For of His fullness we have all received,
.         and grace upon grace.  
.         For the Law was given through Moses;
.         grace and truth were realized
.         through Jesus Christ.”  (John 1:16-17)

(NICODEMUS enters and delivers his soliloquy.)

NIC.      Being a Pharisees, a ruler of the Jews,
.         I was a learned man who knew God’s Law very well.  
.         But the Law does not save us,
.         it only shows us how sinful we really are,
.         because it is impossible for us to be
.         in perfect obedience, no matter who you are.
.         I understood this better after meeting
.         with Jesus, when He explained to me
.         that in order to get to heaven –
.         we had to be born again – spiritually.

SONG 3:  “WHEN I SURVEY THE WONDROUS CROSS” (vs.1&4)
.         by Isaac Watts, arranged by Lowell Mason

READER 3a “For God so loved the world,
.         that He gave His only begotten Son,
.         that whoever believes in Him shall not perish,
.         but have eternal life.  
.         For God did not send the Son into the world
.         to judge the world, but that the world
.         might be saved through Him.” (John 3:16-17)

READER 3b “For He rescued us from the domain of        3
.         darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom
.         of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption,
.         the forgiveness of sins.” (Colossians 1:13-14)

(MARY MAGDALENE enters and delivers her soliloquy.)

MARY M.   Yes, I am THAT Mary.  Mary Magdalene.
.         I had been delivered, not only from seven demons,
.         but from a life of prostitution,
.         a life of degradation and humiliation –
.         scorned by society.  My sins were numerous,
.         but Jesus reached out to me anyway, in mercy.
.         There is not any amount of sin too great.
.         When we seek His forgiveness,
.         He lovingly gives us a new life,
.         delivering us - FREEING us - from all our sins.

SONG 4:  “HALLELUJAH, WHAT A SAVIOR!” (vs.1,3)
.         by Philip P. Bliss

READER 4  “For by grace you have been saved through faith;
.         and that not of yourselves,
.         it is the gift of God; not as a result of works,
.         so that no one may boast.
.         For we are His workmanship,
.         created in Christ Jesus for good works,
.         which God prepared beforehand
.         so that we would walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:8-10)

MARTHA    (enters)  I had invited Jesus to our home
.         for a meal.  Thinking that I could earn
.         Jesus’ favor, there I was, slaving away,
.         while my sister lounged at His feet.
.         Irritated, I pointed this out.  Most men would
.         have said, “You’re right, she should be working.”
.         Instead, Jesus said to me, “Martha, Martha, you
.         are worried and bothered about so many things,
.         but only one thing is necessary.”
.         Jesus did not die on the cross for my sins
.         because I cooked a few meals for Him.  
.         It was all because of His love for us.
.         Instead of worrying about anything,
.         we can find joy in having a personal
.         relationship with Him.
.                                                      4
SONG 5:  “HAIL THE DAY THAT SEES HIM RISE” (vs.1-3)
.         by Charles Wesley & John Roberts

READER 5  “I pray that the eyes of your heart
.         may be enlightened,
.         so that you will know
.         what is the hope of His calling,
.         what are the riches of the glory
.         of His inheritance in the saints, and
.         what is the surpassing greatness of His power
.         toward us who believe." (Ephesians 1:18-19a)

THOMAS    (enters) People have nicknamed me
.         “Doubting Thomas”.  Even though
.         I was WITH Jesus, hearing Him teach,
.         seeing Him perform all those miracles –
.         how could I EVER doubt that Jesus
.         could rise from the dead?
.         But I am not alone in this.  How many others
.         have seen evidence of God at work –
.         and still have questions.
.         How blessed we are though,
.         that Jesus understands us,
.         our struggles, doubts and limitations, and
.         helps us see clearly, to know and understand.

SONG 6:  “ARISE, MY SOUL, ARISE” (vs.1-2)
.         by Charles Wesley & Lewis Edson

READER 6a “If we confess our sins,
.         He is faithful and righteous
.         to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us
.         from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)

READER 6b “Now all these things are from God,
.         who reconciled us to Himself through Christ
.         and gave us the ministry of reconciliation,
.         namely, that God was in Christ
.         reconciling the world to Himself,
.         not counting their trespasses against them,
.         and He has committed to us the word
.         of reconciliation.” (2 Corinthians 5:18-19)

(PETER enters and delivers his soliloquy.)

PETER     Jesus had said to me, “you are Peter,       5
.         and upon this rock I will build My church...”
.         It is not because I was so faithful.
.         In fact, I betrayed Jesus three times
.         in one night.  God being able to use me
.         is only possible because Jesus is faithful.
.         His work on the cross was so that we
.         could draw close to Him, reconciled!
.         And not just a onetime experience,
.         His faithfulness continues to work within us.

SONG 7:  “GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD” by John Stainer

READER 7  “But Jesus called for them, saying,
.         ‘Permit the children to come to Me,
.         and do not hinder them, for
.         the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.
.         Truly I say to you,
.         whoever does not receive the kingdom of God
.         like a child will not enter it at all.’”
.         (Luke 18:16-17)

CHILD     (enters) Children should be seen
.         and not heard.
.         And some grownups do not even want to SEE us.
.         So when my friends and I heard
.         that Jesus was in our town,
.         we tried to see Him.
.         But all the men kept shooing us away,
.         until we heard Jesus tell them
.         to let us through.
.         Jesus spent time with us
.         and told us stories.
.         We just knew –
.         Jesus loved us very much.

SONG 8:  “JESUS LOVES ME” (vs.1-2)
.         by Anna B. Warner & William B. Bradbury

READER 8a “Of Him all the prophets bear witness
.         that through His name everyone
.         who believes in Him receives forgiveness of sins.”
.         (Acts 10:43)

READER 8b “In Him we have redemption through His blood,
.         the forgiveness of our trespasses,
.         according to the riches of His grace
.         which He lavished on us.
.         In all wisdom and insight
.         He made known to us the mystery of His will,
.         according to His kind intention
.         which He purposed in Him
.         with a view to an administration
.         suitable to the fullness of the times,
.         that is, the summing up of all things in Christ,
.         things in the heavens and things on the earth.”
.         (Ephesians 1:7-11)

(PERSON enters and delivers his/her soliloquy,
OR another PERSON could give their personal testimony,
OR the PASTOR could insert a sermon in this spot.)

PERSON    I always thought that the Bible was
.         old fashioned, and just not for me.
.         But the Bible is God’s truth
.         and it is relevant to our lives today.
.         I had to read it to find out for myself.
.         In the Bible we see that many people were
.         witnesses to Jesus’ death and resurrection,
.         and their testimonies speak to us very clearly.
.         We know that Jesus died for us,
.         and rose again so that we might have
.         a personal relationship with God the Father.
.         This is why we celebrate Easter.

READER 8c “These have been written that
.         you may believe that Jesus is the Christ,
.         the Son of God;  and that believing
.         you may have life in His name.” (John 20:31)

SONG 9: “CROWN HIM WITH MANY CROWNS”
.        by Matthew Bridges, Godfrey Thring, George J. Rivey