Jul 3, 2013

Readers' Theatre: Abraham Barters with God

Here’s a simple readers’ theatre setting of Genesis 18: 20-32, where Abraham negotiates with God to spare the people of Sodom and Gomorrah. It is set for two voices:  God and Abraham.

Readers’ Theatre: Genesis 18: 20-32

One:     Abraham, I have heard terrible things—
urgent and outraged calls for help—
coming from the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.
Their sin has become a serious problem.
I must go down and see for Myself
whether the outcries against them are really true.
If not, I will know.

Two:     God, would you really sweep away
            the people who do what is right
            along with those who are wicked?
            What if there were 50 upright people within the city?
            Would you still wipe the place out, and not spare it
on behalf of the 50 upright people who live there?
Surely it can’t be your nature to do something like that—
to kill the right-living along with those who act wickedly,
to consign the innocent to the same fate as the guilty.
It is inconceivable to me that you, my God,
would do anything like that!
Will not the Merciful and Loving Judge of all the earth
do what is just?

One:     If I find 50 good and true people in the city of Sodom,
            I give you my word I will spare the entire city of their behalf.

Two:     Look, I know I am just a human being,
            scooped from the dust and ashes of the earth,
            but if I might implore you, Lord, a bit further:
            What if the city lacked 5 of those 50 right-living people?
            What then?
            Would you destroy the entire city because it lacked those 5?

One:     I won’t destroy the city if I find 45 good and true people there.

Two:     Suppose 40 are found there.

One:     I won’t destroy the city for the sake of 40.

Two:     Please don’t be angry, Lord, at my boldness.
            Let me ask this:
            What if you found 30 there who are good and true?

One:     I will not do it, even if I find only 30 there.

Two:     Since I have implored the Lord this far, may I ask:
            What if there were 20?

One:     For the sake of 20, I will not destroy the city.

Two:     Please don’t be angry, Lord, at my boldness.
            Let me just ask this once more:
            suppose only 10 are found?

One:     For the sake of only 10, I still will not destroy it.