The Heights of Defeat

  • Cast Number: 17
  • Run-time: 45 minutes
  • Bible Reference: Luke 23:26

The crucifixion and resurrection This drama can be as elaborate or as simple as required. Two scenes are depicted. One is the temple, the other the crucifiction/resurrection. It opens up as Jesus is carrying the cross at Golgotha. During the crucifixion, Judas runs to the temple to try to explain his mistake. Then lights switch back to the tomb.

Louisa Baptist Church in Virginia are one of the many who have very successfully performed this drama for Easter and "everyone loved it." They added 5 songs, had 21 actors and 28 off-stage involved.

Sample of script:

Jesus, centurion and soldiers enter from the back of sanctuary, led down the aisle to the front of the church, being flogged, thrown to the ground. There are a group of people following among whom are a majority of women, the women are crying and wailing, (be careful that the sounds do not overpower any spoken lines)
Simon of Cyrene is on stage with crowd of people, watching as Jesus is brought down aisle
Flavius: Move along oh kingly one!
Jesus: Women of Jerusalem, don't cry for me! Cry for yourselves and for your children. Someday people will say, "Women who never had children are really fortunate!" At that time everyone will say to the mountains, "Fall on us!" They will say to the hills, "Hide us!" If this can happen when the wood is green, what do you think will happen when it is dry?
Fortunatus: Enough of the oratory! Just move along, we have a duty to do.
Praneius: Yes, not that much farther and the real fun begins!
Jesus: If any man would follow me he must take up his cross and follow me.
Praneius: If there are any volunteers to have their own private cross we can certainly find one somewhere I am sure! (Jesus stumbles) Oh, is this crossbeam too heavy for your highness? Perhaps this will make your load lighter!
Praneius presses down hard on the cross to make it dig into Jesus’ back more deeply, forcing Jesus to stumble, cry out
Flavius, laughs, mocking: Or this may make for a lighter step!
Flavius lays whip to Jesus’ back, causing him to cry out
Praneius: Oh, your highness! Was there no miracle at hand to keep the lash from biting your flesh?
Flavius: Perhaps you who have turned the water into wine could turn this crucifixion into your coronation, oh king of all the Jewish nation!
Flavius and Praneius laugh and mock
Fortunatus: Perhaps you two soldiers might try to enjoy your duties less?
Flavius: Centurion Fortunatus, he is only a Jew!
Praneius: Yes, and a deranged one at that!
Fortunatus: That does not prevent him from being a human being. Do your jobs, but don’t entirely trample on his humanity.
Praneius: Allow us some sport, there is precious little in the way of enjoyment for a Roman soldier stationed in this dog pile!
Fortunatus: Regardless, just get it done!
Jesus trips and falls
Flavius: Oh the poor monarch has fallen! (angry, speaks to Jesus) Get up and move to your death, you dog!
Fortunatus: He has fallen and can’t get up. (looks at the crowd) You . . . you . . (points at Simon) Come here, pick up his cross!
Simon looks around himself among the crowd, looking to see who the centurion is speaking with, mimes “me?” shows confusion
Fortunatus: Yes, you! Over here, carry His cross!
Simon: Me? You expect me to carry His cross? Why would I want to carry His cross? I am I’ll have you know that though I am from another country, Cyrenaica, I am a Jew, here for the purpose of observance of the Holy days.
Fortunatus: You will do as you are told!
Simon: I tell you I do not wish to carry His cross! Ask one of His friends. The whole countryside seemed to be rallying behind Him just days ago when He made His triumphal entry riding that silly colt. Yes, I was there. I had nothing pressing, I went. I watched with some amusement as the locals were literally falling out of trees, desperate to catch a glimpse of Him. Calling out to the “Messiah”. Hardly my style. Look, I barely know anything about Him. Roots in Nazareth I’m told. Although not particularly a provincialist by nature, I can see some justification for those who said, “what good can come out of Nazareth?” Insignificant, meaningless little town in an insignificant, meaningless setting.
Flavius: Perhaps you missed it, the centurion didn’t ask, he demanded that you carry the cross!

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