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REACTIONS TO THE CRUCIFIXION – written by Tanis Harms
TOPIC: crucifixion, faith
SCRIPTURE: Mt.26-28, Mk.14-16, Lk.22-24, Jh.18-21
Style: drama/conversation: Mary and Peter compare
. their reactions to Jesus’ crucifixion which
. demonstrates their lack of faith
. (“Reactions to the Resurrection”/a sequel
. demonstrates their newfound faith)
Cast: MARY MAGDELENE, PETER
Set & Props: Bible era costumes
(MARY and PETER step out on opposite sides and speak
to each other, but look out to the congregation only.)
PETER Mary! Mary Magdalene! There you are.
. I’ve been looking for - for any familiar face.
MARY There was a big earthquake – Peter - right when –
. right - at the time – oh, how could this happen?
PETER I tried to stop them from taking Jesus. I did.
. I did whatever I could.
MARY You tried everything?
PETER I grabbed a sword we had with us – when
. they came for Him - but Jesus told me to stop.
MARY Why? Why would He want you to stop?
PETER I had cut off a man’s ear. Jesus told me
. to stop, and then He healed the man.
MARY Of course He did. Jesus would rather suffer
. than see anyone else hurt. But – but didn’t
. Jesus at least try to reason with them?
PETER There were too many – and – and – well –
. truthfully – I don’t know... I ran away,
. with the rest of the disciples.
MARY How could you just leave Him like that?
. You KNEW they wanted to kill Him.
. How could you leave Him all alone?
PETER I don’t know. But I did come back 2
. and follow after the crowds as they
. took Jesus to the high priest’s courtyard.
. I thought I could maybe do something
. at that point.
MARY Did you?
PETER I was – I was too scared. I saw the way
. they were treating our Lord.
. Spitting in His face, slapping and
. beating Him with their fists – mocking Him.
. At one point, they covered His eyes –
. then took turns hitting Him, and saying things
. like, “Prophesy and tell us who hit You.”
. The people were - so angry – and riled up.
. I feared for my life. The trial - was a fiasco.
. So-called witnesses were stepping forward
. and outright lying.
MARY You could have acted as a witness.
. You could have told the truth.
. Why didn’t you step forward?
PETER I – couldn’t even admit that I knew Him.
. People were starting to recognize me.
. I feared for my life! - even though
. I swore to Jesus that I would follow Him
. and even die for Him... But – instead,
. I – I denied Him – three times...
. just as He said I would...
MARY The crowds WERE in a frenzy.
PETER The Pharisees stirred up the people
. against Jesus. Imagine, the people preferred
. to have a notorious criminal like Barabbas
. released instead of Jesus. There was nothing
. I could have done with everyone so worked up.
. I tried following again, but, only at a distance.
MARY We followed too. Mostly women. We also kept
. at a distance hiding in the shadows,
. afraid for ourselves. They made Him carry
. His own cross. He kept stumbling.
. He looked so tired and beaten.
. And not one of us stepped forward to help.
. No one even tried.
PETER No one?
MARY Jesus was so well guarded,
. the high priests made sure of it.
. And there were soldiers making sure
. that nothing would interfere with this agenda.
. Did they think Jesus would suddenly escape?
. He could barely walk, let alone carry
. those heavy beams. And all we could do
. was cry and lament. At one point,
. Jesus looked up at us and told us
. NOT to cry for Him, but instead, we should be
. crying for ourselves and our children.
. What did He mean by that?
PETER I do not know.
MARY How could we NOT cry for Him –
. as He struggled along in so much pain?
. Eventually they became impatient
. and made a bystander carry the cross.
. It was just too much for Him. His robe –
. His whole body was - so bruised and blood-soaked.
. The pain He must have had from the 40 lashes.
. I just cannot imagine.
PETER The barbs would have torn away at His flesh...
MARY And the thorns - on His head. (shaking her head)
. Then there were those people just going
. about their daily business like nothing
. unusual was happening - selling their wares
. to take advantage of the crowds-
. oblivious to the injustice.
. He was hung on a cross like a common criminal!
. And He did nothing wrong!
. How could people not see the injustice?!
PETER I just stood by and watched –
. as they nailed Him to the cross...
. It felt the same - as if I had put the nails
. into His flesh myself.
MARY I could not watch. And once when I DID look up -
. there was just a moment when He looked at me.
. Even though He hung there, gasping to breathe -
. He seemed to look right at me, into my very soul.
. I felt like I died with Him. And on some level,
. I know that it SHOULD have been me on that cross
. instead. I am deserving of death – not Jesus.
(MARY sobs softly.) 4
MARY WHAT did Jesus ever do to anyone? Nothing!
. He did nothing wrong! The Son of God –
. who loved and healed people –
PETER The One who could control even the winds
. and the sea-
MARY Then WHY did He just ALLOW us to put Him
. to death? What was He thinking?
. I don’t understand.
PETER I certainly didn’t want to see Him die.
. WHAT is so wrong with that?
. But Jesus kept rebuking me for saying so.
. I always tell myself that I mean well.
. Who am I kidding? I don’t have control of my
. OWN actions, how did I ever think I could control
. the world around me and stop Jesus’ death?...
. Well, it’s over.
MARY Are you sure? Perhaps –
PETER No, they made sure He was dead.
. When they pierced His side,
. there was water already in the blood.
. Nothing more can be done now.
MARY Then I will go with a few of the women
. to prepare the spices for His burial.
. I just hope the rulers will at least –
. let us bury Jesus’ body properly.
(PETER and MARY sadly exit, each to their side.)