Resurrection Morning -- Readers Theater based on John 20:1-18 (NIV) for four readers

by Dr. Ralph F. Wilson

Read my Introduction to Readers Theater to learn how to use this with your group or congregation.

READER 1

Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene ....

READER 2

It was the first day of the week

READER 3

Sunday.

READER 4

Very early.

READER 2

Very early Sunday morning.

READER 3

And dark.

READER 4

Still dark.

READER 1

Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance.

READER 2

The stone had been moved.

READER 3

The door of the tomb was gaping open.

READER 4

The tomb had been disturbed.

READER 1

So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved,

READER 2

She ran out of the garden

READER 3

She ran into the city

READER 4

She ran up the street

READER 1

Until she came to the house where Peter and John were staying.

READER 2

She stood a moment to catch her breath and then she said

READER 1

"They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don't know where they have put him!"

READER 2

The body's been stolen.

READER 3

It's gone.

READER 4

Where could it be?

READER 1

So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first.

READER 2

They ran

READER 3

(sound of hard breathing)

READER 4

They ran as fast as they could

READER 3

(sound of hard breathing)

READER 2

And John outran Peter.

READER 1

John bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in.

READER 2

He was cautious.

READER 3

He leaned into the tomb to see where the body had been.

READER 4

But all he saw were the strips of linen wrappings lying there on the cold slab.

READER 2

The body was gone

READER 3

But the wrappings were left where they had been.

READER 1

Then Simon Peter, who was behind him, arrived and went into the tomb.

READER 2

Peter burst into the tomb.

READER 3

No stopping him!

READER 1

Peter saw the strips of linen lying there, as well as the burial cloth that had been around Jesus' head.

READER 2

Yes, the cloth that had been around Jesus head

READER 3

This cloth was folded up by itself, separate from the linen.

READER 4

Folded up.

READER 2

Separate from the rest of the wrappings.

READER 3

It was neatly folded by itself.

READER 1

Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed. (They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead.)

READER 2

They believed.

READER 1

Did they believe because the tomb was empty?

READER 2

No.

READER 1

Did they believe because of angels?

READER 3

No.

READER 1

Did they believe because of the grave wrappings?

READER 4

Yes, the position of the grave wrappings convinced them that this was no grave robbery.

READER 2

No hurried taking of the body for some unknown reason.

READER 3

The grave wrappings were intact.

READER 4

They were still coiled where the body had been.

READER 2

Peter believed.

READER 3

John believed.

READER 4

And they were amazed!

READER 1

Then the disciples went back to their homes, but Mary stood outside the tomb crying.

READER 2

She wept.

READER 3

She shed tears of grief.

READER 4

Tears of sorrow.

READER 2

Tears of unbelief.

READER 1

As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus' body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot.

READER 2

One at the head.

READER 3

The other at the foot.

READER 4

The angels sat one at each end.

READER 1

They asked her, "Woman, why are you crying?"

READER 2

Why are you crying?

READER 3

Why are you crying?

READER 4

Why are you crying?

READER 1

"They have taken my Lord away," she said, "and I don't know where they have put him."

READER 2

They've stolen his body.

READER 3

Someone has stolen his body.

READER 4

Someone has taken him away.

READER 1

At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus. "Woman," he said, "why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?"

READER 2

Thinking he was the gardener, she said....

READER 3

She supposed he was the gardener.

READER 4

She didn't recognize him at all.

READER 1

Thinking he was the gardener, she said "Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him."

READER 2

Tell me.

READER 3

Please tell me.

READER 4

And I will get him.

READER 1

Jesus said to her, "Mary."

READER 2

Mary.

READER 3

Mary.

READER 1

She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, "Rabboni!" (which means Teacher).

READER 2

Rabboni.

READER 3

Rabbi.

READER 4

Teacher.

READER 1

Jesus said, "Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet returned to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, 'I am returning to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.'"

READER 2

Then Mary Magdalene went to the disciples.

READER 3

Did she run this time?

READER 4

Did she walk?

READER 3

Did she hurry?

READER 2

Or did she take her time thinking over the wonder of this wonderful news?

READER 1

Then Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: "I have seen the Lord!" And she told them that he had said these things to her.

READER 2

I have seen the Lord.

READER 3

I have seen the Lord, she said.

READER 4

Of all the disciples

READER 2

Of all the male apostles

READER 3

Of all his followers of note and renown

READER 1

Mary Magdalene received the blessing....

READER 2

...To be the very first...

READER 3

To say the words...

READER 4

I have seen him!

READER 3

I have seen Jesus!

ALL

I have seen the Lord!

Copyright © 1985-2014, Ralph F. Wilson. <pastor@joyfulheart.com> All rights reserved. A single copy of this article is free. Do not put this on a website. See legal, copyright, and reprint information.

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