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csi-jerusalem

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CSI: Jerusalem Drama - By Kelly Virgo, Crawley

Characters:

Two CSI investigators, Bob and Dave
Chief priest, Jethro
Tomb guards, Fred and Bill
Disciples, Peter, John, Thomas
Roman soldiers: Brutus and Biff

Notes:

(In the script, Picture A refers to a picture of a tomb with a stone rolled away
Picture B shows a pile of clothes previously wrapped around the body of Jesus
Picture C is a crown of thorns
Picture D is nails
Picture E shows a nail sticking into a hand.)

SCENE 1

Two CSI investigators appear.

Bob: Okay, this tomb (POINT TO PICTURE A) is the crime scene. Let’s go over the details again. A Jew was buried here on Friday, and today, Sunday, the body has gone missing. This investigation has been ordered by Pilate himself, we’d better get him some answers.

Dave: What have we got so far?

Bob: A 33 year old Jewish man, crucified three days ago, pronounced dead. A man known as Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate if he could bury the body in this tomb, and Pilate agreed. The body was wrapped in clean linen cloths – same ones that were found abandoned in the tomb (POINT TO PICTURE B) – and put in the tomb.

Dave: Did the Jew have anything worth stealing?

Bob: Nothing has been reported stolen except his corpse. A couple of Jewish women came by this morning and noticed the stone had been moved and the body was gone. They ran off whimpering.

Dave: Why would anyone want to take a dead body? And a Jew at that!

Bob: Good question. We need to talk to some witnesses. Let’s find a head Jew who can tell us about the stolen man.

SCENE 2

Dave: We are CSI investigators looking into the Case of the Body Snatchers. Can you give us a few minutes of your time?

Bob: Are you one of the head Jews?

Jethro: Actually I am a chief priest.

Bob: Good enough. You knew the man that was crucified? Was he a friend of yours?

Jethro: I knew him. He was certainly not a friend. This man made ridiculous claims about being the Son of God, actually suggesting that the Holy One was his father! Blasphemy and lies! Yes, he was crucified for his lies.

Dave: Why would anyone take the body of the man you think is a liar? Do you think someone wanted to exact further revenge on him and cut his body into pieces?

Jethro: No, quite the opposite. There are those who were his friends, and I believe they have taken the body. This is what I feared would happen. It’s the reason I asked Pilate to place guards outside the tomb and seal it so that no one could take him.

Bob: I’m not with you.

Jethro: You see, the deceiver said that “After three days I will rise again”. I asked Pilate to give the order to make the tomb secure. Otherwise I knew the man’s disciples would come and steal the body and tell gullible people that he has been raised from the dead. This is exactly what they’ve done. They are trying to gain new followers – this new deception is worse than the original lies! You have to arrest the followers.

Bob: This is getting quite interesting. We need more evidence. Let’s talk to the guards who watched over the tomb. Perhaps they were in on it all along.

SCENE 3

Dave: We are CSI investigators looking into the Case of the Body Snatchers. Can you give us a few minutes of your time?

Fred: Are you reporting back to Pilate? I’m not sure I want to talk to you.

Bob: Maybe you should come with us to the Station then.

Bill: No, it’s okay. We’ll talk. What do you want to know?

Dave: You were guarding the tomb with the crucified Jew all night? This tomb? (POINT TO PICTURE A)

Bill: Yes.

Bob: How do you explain the body going missing? It’s a bit suspicious, isn’t it?

Fred: What are you implying?

Bob: Nothing yet... Tell us about your job here.

Fred: We’re trained to guard, it’s actually quite a tough training regime. We have to be fighting fit in case anything kicks off, and we have to be really alert while we’re on the job. Training like that takes months. We are excellent guards, absolutely infallible, really excellent.

Bill: Okay Fred!! So anyway, this was a very unusual job for us but we are professionals, we didn’t question our orders.

Dave: And what were your orders?

Bill: We had to keep watch, and ...make sure that... no one came to ...steal the body. Look, we are absolutely excellent at our job, like Fred says. But last night, something happened. It was... strange.

Fred: You won’t believe us.

Bob: Just tell us what happened. The truth.

Bill: There was a violent earthquake, right? Did you feel the earth tremble?

Bob: Yes, about 4 o’clock in the morning. That was weird. Why?

Fred: Well, what it was, right, this huge golden man – his appearance was like lightning and his clothes were white as snow – kind of landed, and that’s what caused the tremors. He went over to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it.

Bob: Hmmmm...

Bill: Really. It happened just as he said. We wouldn’t make something as crazy as that up – think about it. We are Roman guards, like you, we are totally professional. If we’d been dreaming - actually asleep on the job – there’s major punishment, maybe even beheading. There’s no way we would risk that.

Fred: And we both saw the exact same thing.

Dave: Right, let’s put our disbelief on hold and go with this. What did you do when the big white guy showed up?

Bill: That’s the worst thing. We – Roman guards! – were terrified! I couldn’t help it, I shook with fear, and then fainted.

Fred: Me too! You don’t understand – he was huge! And so bright I couldn’t look at him!

Bob: I’ve examined the stone, it’s really heavy. You’re saying this one big dude shifted it?

Fred: It took 12 of us to roll that stone in front of the doorway, and it was really hard work too. There’s no way anyone could have moved it by themselves, unless they had super – and by that I mean supernatural - strength. I’ve heard about this Jew that was killed. His name was Jesus, and he apparently healed the sick and even raised a couple of people from the dead. I think maybe he was telling the truth all along. Maybe he was the Son of God.

Dave: Well, thanks for your time. I think we have more work to do. This case is obviously not quite as simple as we thought.

Peter and John run past.

Bob: Hey you! This is a crime scene. You can’t go in there.

Dave: We are CSI investigators looking into the Case of the Body Snatchers. Can you give us a few minutes of your time?

Bob: Dave, do you have to keep saying that?! You men are Jews? Were you followers of the man they call Jesus?

Peter: Some women told us that Jesus has risen from the grave. We came to see for ourselves. John, he’s not here. I don’t understand.

Dave: Let them go. They are obviously not very bright if they are listening to some hysterical women.

Peter and John leave wearing bewildered expressions.

Dave (thoughtfully): But actually, if they were our main suspects I am not at all sure they took the body. They looked confused.

Bob: I don’t know what to make of the guards’ story. They are well-respected professionals, but their story was quite unbelievable. I just don’t know why they would risk their jobs, and maybe even their lives, to tell something so crazy. But, I have a new theory. What if the Jew wasn’t actually dead?

Dave: Hmmm. I don’t see how he could have moved the stone and duped the guards, but well, let’s visit some more witnesses.

SCENE 4

Dave: We are CSI investigators looking into the Case of the Body Snatchers. Can you give us a few minutes of your time?

Bob: Are you the soldiers who punished the Jew known as Jesus?

Brutus: Well, us and a few of the other lads.

Biff: We were only doing our job. What’s it to you?
Bob: The body has gone missing, and we wanted to know if he might have walked away. Are you absolutely sure he wasn’t still alive?

Brutus: Definitely. We don’t do things by halves. We get a lot of job satisfaction in getting our message across. All kinds of thugs, murderers, thieves – we let them know what low-lives they are and no one walks away with their tail hanging between their legs. If the order is death, we give it to them. This one got the full treatment.

Biff: That Jew was punished good and proper. He got the worst punishment we know – crucifixion. And that was after a sound whipping. We beat him with spiked clubs. He got 39 lashes. We stripped off his clothes. Hah! When we found out he called himself a king, I even ripped up some thorny bushes and made them into a crown. Jammed it on his head, we said “Hail king of the Jews!” Classic! (POINT TO PICTURE C) We kept at it until we got bored, and he was nearly dead by then.

Brutus: Yeah, and then we made him carry his own cross up the hill. He was staggering around with flesh hanging off him and blood dripping, but he did go some way before he collapsed and some other low-life carried it for him.

Dave: So what does crucifixion mean? For the record.

Biff: It’s one of my personal favourites. You hammer the nails through his hands into the cross, then basically lift the whole thing up with the man hanging there. (POINT TO PICTURES D, E AND F) The wood’s not smooth, it’s rough and splintered, and it rubs against the open wounds a treat. See, up on the cross, hanging by nails in your hands, it’s hard to even breathe. He can’t get air into his lungs in that position. So he has to keep lifting himself up to breathe. After a while the shoulders cramp or dislocate and they are not much use. He has to try raising himself up with his legs. It can go on for hours.

Brutus: Sometimes we have to break their legs to speed up the process. But we didn’t have to do that with the Jew. So anyway, when they are exhausted and have no more energy to fight, they just suffocate.

Bob: I feel sick thinking about it.

Brutus (thoughtfully): There was something odd about this Jew though.

Dave: Oh?

Brutus: Yeah, it was weird right. Everyone we put through this punishment – everyone – screams and swears and eventually cries for their mummy. But not this man. Did you notice, Biff?

Biff: Yeah, you’re right. He just took it.

Brutus: I don’t mean he wasn’t human. He flinched all right, every time the whip came down, and screamed when we banged the nails in, and there was a lot of whimpering. But, he didn’t even complain about the pain. He didn’t swear, he didn’t blame anyone for making him suffer. He was actually... dignified. Despite all our insults, he didn’t get mad at us. He said something, apparently he said something about... forgiveness.

Biff: No! Is that what he said? You’re making me feel bad now.

Bob: But wait – are you absolutely positively sure beyond all doubt that he was dead?

Brutus: After all that, of course he was dead! I’ve seen tons of dead bodies so I should know. And just to make extra sure I speared him in the side and blood and water flowed out – a sure sign.

SCENE 5

Dave: What do you think? Sounds like he was pretty well dead. A dead body can’t get up and walk out of a tomb, stone or no stone.

Bob: And the tomb guards were convinced no human could have moved the stone without them noticing.

Dave: Well, we’ve looked all around town and the man’s followers are keeping a low profile.

Jethro: Ah, there you are! Look, I’ve apprehended one of the followers here. I thought you should question him. He must be in on it.

Thomas: It’s so amazing...

Jethro: He’s making no sense at all, so good luck with that. I’m off!

Bob: Okay, you’re here now, so you may as well talk.

Dave: We are CSI investigators looking into the Case of the Body... that ... left the building. Can you give us a few minutes of your time?

Thomas: Sure. I’ve just seen the most amazing thing! I would never have believed it, but when I touched Jesus, touched the nail marks in his hands, he really is, he really is alive!

Bob: What?

Thomas: Oh yes! Some of the others had already seen him and believed, but I thought it couldn’t be true, maybe they saw his ghost. But then he appeared – came into the room where we were gathered, even though we’d locked the doors. He said, “Peace be with you!” Then he came right over to me, he must have known what I had been thinking! He invited me to touch his scars – the nail marks in his hands, even his side where he had been pierced! And he said, “Stop doubting and believe!” He was warm, and solid, and real. He is alive!! Jesus is alive! He is the Christ! He is the Son of God!
Dave: And others can verify this?

Thomas: Oh yes! I mean, Mary Magdelene saw him first, and the disciples who went to Emmaus, and all of us in the room earlier. And I am sure we’ll see him again. Excuse me, I’ve got to find the others.

Bob: This is unprecedented! They have witnesses to the miracle! I can’t believe I’m saying this, I’m actually starting to believe this might be true. Jesus is the Son of God, he died and he rose again. (TURN TO AUDIENCE) What do you think?

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