.           all rights belong to Tanis Harms –
.             refer to

REPORTING LIVE – written by Tanis Harms
TOPIC:        ministry of Jesus
SCRIPTURE:    Daniel 4:3, Luke 3:22, 9:60, 18:16, 19:10,
.             John 4:9, 10:25, 12:27, Matt.12:30,
.             Eph.3:11
Style:        satire/conversation:  a reporter interviews
.             a Pharisee and people on the street
.             in order to get to the truth about Jesus
Cast:         REPORTER, PESSACH (Pharisee), ANDREW,
NOTE:         - depending on the amount of children,
.             you can reassign their lines accordingly;
.             - you could have only one elderly and
.             put those lines together;  as well,
.             - you could have extra PEOPLE in the crowd
Set & Props:  microphone, slate with notes


(REPORTER enters and stops to address the congregation.)

REPORTER  Good afternoon.  This is Emerson Daily,
.         reporting live from the nation of Israel.
.         In my quest for bringing you the truth,
.         it is my job is to dispel rumors and
.         expose lies.  Probably the biggest scam
.         to ever hit this land, has been fostered by
.         this man called Jesus - who has been making
.         all sorts of radical claims– including the one
.         that he could possibly be our Messiah.
.         “Preposterous!” is the reaction
.         of our noble religious leaders.
.         So here with me today, is a leading expert,
.         and chief priest, Pessach.

(PESSACH enters and stands to REPORTER’S right-hand side
and gives a slight, arrogant bow to the congregation.)

REPORTER  To my left-hand side,
.         we have random people from the streets,
.         who really do not deserve any sort
.         of formal introduction –
.         as they are really –
.         NOT all that important.
.                                                       2
(PEOPLE enter and stand to the REPORTER’S left-hand side.
PEOPLE do not react in a bad way to the REPORTER,
but remain patient and humble.)

REPORTER  (to Pessach)  So, Chief Priest Pessach,
.         WHAT - say you - on this man called Jesus?
.         Is there any validity to what He
.         is proclaiming and doing?

PESSACH   None at all.  Not only do I know
.         the scriptures backward and forward,
.         but I have also witnessed this man in action.

REPORTER  And has he done or said anything extreme
.         that would be cause for alarm?

PESSACH   Without question!  Jesus has made
.         several claims that he is the Son of God.
.         In fact, he has made himself equal
.         to God, Himself, if you can imagine that.

REPORTER  That is quite a statement.  How could anybody
.         even support such an assumption?  How could
.         anybody be lured in by such a ludicrous idea?
.         I don’t suppose anybody here would dare
.         offer up an explanation to refute this?
.         (ANDREW steps forward)
.         And we actually have a taker.
.         Your name, please?

ANDREW    Andrew.  Before I was a disciple of Jesus,
.         I was a disciple of John the Baptist.

REPORTER  So you come with SOME credentials.

ANDREW    I was also there when Jesus was baptized,
.         and witnessed the Holy Spirit descending
.         upon Jesus in the bodily form of a dove.
.         And I heard the voice from heaven say,
.         “You are My beloved Son,
.         in You I am well-pleased.”

REPORTER  Well, that sounds very incredible.  Of course,
.         this happens ALL the time, I’m sure.
.         (throws a sarcastic look at PESSACH)

ANDREW    Many other people also witnessed this.        3
.         Including some Pharisees who just
.         refuse to admit it.

(PESSACH quickly looks up and away as “innocently”
as possible to avoid being questioned on this.)

REPORTER  Well, I will give them benefit of the doubt.

ANDREW    But you will not extend that same courtesy
.         to us?

REPORTER  I need far more proof.  So I’ll refer again
.         to our expert.  Pessach, could you please
.         enlighten us?  When the Messiah comes,
.         what sort of evidence can we expect?

PESSACH   It is quite simple.  The prophet Daniel
.         speaks of the Messiah being able to accomplish
.         many great and mighty signs and wonders.

REPORTER  (turns to ANDREW)  So you see!

ANDREW    I have.  While following Jesus,
.         I’ve witnessed Him performing
.         a lot of mighty signs and wonders.
.         He has calmed raging storms at sea,
.         walked on water, fed thousands
.         from just a few loaves of bread,
.         made the lame to walk, the blind to see,
.         and has even raised people from the dead.
.         How much more do you need to see?

(REPORTER swings attention over to PESSACH.)

PESSACH   Ahhh... we believe that his powers
.         come from Beelzebub.

REPORTER  (to ANDREW)  So what are your reactions
.         to that?

ANDREW    If that were so, Jesus would not be able
.         to teach us from the scriptures.
.         The demons’ father is the father of lies.
.         Jesus only teaches the Truth.  As well,
.         Jesus lives out everything that He teaches.
.         Jesus cares for and loves all people.
.                                                       4
REPORTER  LOVES people?  I have it from
.         a reliable source, that Jesus
.         does not care for the elderly at all.
.         He reportedly said to someone, “Follow me,
.         and let the dead - bury - the dead.”
.         I mean, just how rude is that?

(ELDERLY 1 and 2 push forward to speak.)

ELDER 1   I’m not dead yet!

REPORTER  Pardon me?

ELDER 1   We’re not dead yet.  We’re very much alive.

REPORTER  What has that got to do with anything, old man?

ELDER 2   We were there when Jesus said those exact words
.         to our son.

ELDER 1   Yes, and what Jesus really meant by that –
.         was “Stop giving excuses and do
.         what you should be doing.”

ELDER 2   Our son has always needed extra encouragement
.         like that.

ELDER 1   And if you ask me, he’s a tiny bit lazy.
.         Always with the excuses.

ELDER 2   And I just wonder where he gets that from?

ELDER 1   Hey-

REPORTER  Okaaay, but don’t you want your children
.         to take care of you when you’re older?

ELDER 1   I don’t want him hanging around
.         just waiting for us to die.  What for?
.         Will he get his inheritance any sooner?
.         He’s not getting a penny until
.         I’m good and gone.  And that’s
.         not going to be for a long time yet.
.         You see the spunk in me, yes?
.         There’s lots of spunk left.

ELDER 2   As you see, we are still able                 5
.         to take very good care of ourselves.

ELDER 1   Kids today.  Don’t think we can take care
.         of ourselves?  Well, you – you all just
.         get going and try to keep up with us!  Huh?
.         Get busy.  We’re doing just fine.

ELDER 2   That’s right.  Jesus was right to say that.
.         They need to stop making excuses and get busy.

REPORTER  I still think that was very rude of him to say.

ELDER 1   I see you like to make excuses also.

(REPORTER is feeling dizzy and frustrated by this
conversation and tries to wrap up this topic.)

REPORTER  Whatever.  But if -

(CHILDREN step forward to say their piece.)

CHILD 1   Excuse me!

REPORTER  (tries to finish the thought)  But, if Jesus
.         supposedly loves everyone, then He’d be
.         a little more sensitive to all ages -

CHILD 1   Excuse me!  Excuse me!

CHILD 2   We know something about –

REPORTER  Could someone get these children out of my way.

CHILD 2   But we know something -

REPORTER  (to CHILDREN)  I’m trying to work here.

CHILD 1   See, Jesus would never say that.

REPORTER  What could you possibly know about Jesus
.         that would shed any light on this situation?

CHILD 3   Well, just like you did – just now -
.         adults like to tell us that we should
.         only be seen and not heard.
.         But Jesus is different.
.                                                       6
REPORTER  Really?  And how is that?

CHILD 4   Jesus loves us and makes time for us.

CHILD 3   Everyone was trying to chase us away
.         from seeing Jesus, and told us
.         that He was very busy.

CHILD 1   But Jesus told the people NOT to stop us
.         from trying to see Him.

REPORTER  Interesting, I suppose.  So – thank you.
.         You may now go – go and play.

(But the CHILDREN remain to listen.)

REPORTER  Ah, well, okay... but, you are all Israelites.
.         I’m sure Jesus doesn’t love ALL people?
.         (turning to PESSACH)
.         I mean, as a proper Israelite,
.         are we expected to love someone like,
.         let’s say, the Samaritans?

PESSACH   The Samaritans are half-breeds, and so
.         they do not deserve the same treatment
.         that the Israelites are to expect-

(SAMARITAN WOMAN steps forward.)

WOMAN     Except, that, I – I am –

REPORTER  Yes-yes, I realize, you’re a Samaritan.
.         So - please go away.

WOMAN     But I met Jesus.
.         (REPORTER stops, almost curious)
.         Jesus spoke with me.

REPORTER  YOU?  A Samaritan – and a WOMAN???

WOMAN     And a sinner.  But still,
.         Jesus loved me enough,
.         to give me a message of hope – and love.

REPORTER  But what is the point of all this?
.         What exactly does Jesus hope to accomplish?
.                                                       7
(REPORTER swings over to PESSACH)

PESSACH   He’s just trying to lure people
.         in to follow Him.  He is power-hungry
.         and has high hopes to usurp
.         the authority of the Pharisees.

(ANDREW shakes his head and steps forward again.)

ANDREW    I can speak to this.  I have heard
.         most of His messages to the people.
.         Jesus is doing all of this
.         so we can have forgiveness of sins –
.         and a relationship with God.

REPORTER  How can you even prove such a thing?

PESSACH   (shakes his head)  It is impossible
.         to prove this sort of thing.

ANDREW    Not at all.  It is by changed lives.
.         And there is plenty of evidence.
.         Take Matthew, for instance.  He is now
.         one of Jesus’ disciples, but used to be –
.         of all things – a dreaded tax collector!
.         But Jesus called Matthew out of that,
.         and you would never recognize Matthew.
.         He is a changed man, and still growing
.         and maturing in the Lord.  As am I.

REPORTER  (becoming impressed)  A tax collector?
.         Who gave up all his money to follow Jesus?

PESSACH   But – tax collectors – are traitors
.         to begin with.

REPORTER  Still, my uncle is a tax collector.  I know
.         what they’re all about.  One wouldn’t just
.         give that all up for nothing...  So I wonder -
.         if Jesus would even care about me?

CHILD 4   Of course He would.

REPORTER  Reporters are not the most beloved people
.         in society either, you know.
.         I’ve lied, and I’ve done – things.
.                                                       8
WOMAN     Haven’t we all.

ANDREW    There is only one sin that Jesus
.         will not forgive, and that sin –
.         is not asking for His forgiveness.

REPORTER  Well, then, I really must speak with Him.

(REPORTER and ANDREW speak as they walk off, followed
by the rest of the people, expect for PESSACH, who waves
them off in disgust and exits in the opposite direction.)