Day Trip to Nazareth Refunds

Mark 6.1-6
Richard B Gillion
1997

INSPECTOR [To crowds:] Nazareth day-trip ticket refunds here.  Refunds on your
		tickets.  Get your refunds.

PHARISEE	What are you doing?

INSPECTOR	Giving people their money back.

PHARISEE	Why?

INSPECTOR	Because they only came to be healed by Jesus and you stopped
		it happening.

PHARISEE	How do you mean ĎWe stopped it happening?í

INSPECTOR	You and all the others in the local council.  Itís all your fault
		the visitors werenít healed, so Iím acting on my authority as chief
		inspector of day-trip-to-Nazareth tickets and refunding them.

PHARISEE	We didnít stop anything.  We were not happy about what he was
		saying and doing, but we didnít stop anything.

INSPECTOR	Yes you did, you put on the biggest display of unbelief since the
		flood.  If you and the rest of the council had been around in
		Noahís day, you would have been organising an
		eat-drink-and-be-merry evening instead of getting on board the ark.

PHARISEE	It was our duty to protect the gullible.

INSPECTOR	What, like the gullible maniacs who stop terrorising their
		neighbourhoods, or the gullible lepers who find they can come back
		into society, or the gullible blind beggars who leave their choice
		begging sites and walk home on their own for the first time in
		decades.

PHARISEE	Donít tell me you believe all that stuff about him.

INSPECTOR	I came to listen with an open mind.

PHARISEE	But heís always been such an odd ball.  Do you remember our R.E.
		lessons at school?  Our teacher asked ĎWhat did Abraham give God to
		eat when he came to visit his tent?í

INSPECTOR	Yeah, and Jesus said ďBread and milk, curds and calf meat and
		it didnít half taste yummy!Ē [rubs tummy imitating the boy Jesus]

PHARISEE	And that time when the teacher asked ďWho was in the fiery
		furnace?Ē and the only two to put their hands up were Jesus and Ben
		Jacobs.  We all thought Jesus was going to be clever and say
		Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego.

INSPECTOR	But he said, ďPlease Sir, I donít remember Ben Jacobs being there.Ē

PHARISEE	Well I hope your open mindís been made up now that heís failed.
		Heís a phoney, out to do people out of their savings.

INSPECTOR	But he doesnít have anything but the bare essentials.  No worldly
		security.  No house, no transport, no land.  Heís not doing people
		out of anything.

PHARISEE	Heís deluded then.  He thinks he is the Son of God.  It comes from
		knowing that Joseph wasnít his real father.  No one knows who was.

INSPECTOR	Joseph taught him all he knew.  Jesus listened to him more than any
		of us did to our fathers.  He was more balanced growing up than any
		of us.

PHARISEE	Then why did he leave his family and cause them so much worry?
		Thatís not what a good son does.

INSPECTOR	Donít you think he heard a stronger call to do what he is doing?
		He was a pretty good carpenter, but heís a brilliant preacher.

PHARISEE	How can he be a brilliant preacher?  Heís got no certificate.  He
		wasnít anyoneís disciple in particular.  Heís no Rabbi; I bet he
		doesnít even know how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.

INSPECTOR	No, but he knows how to get camels through the eyes of needles.

PHARISEE	Camels through eyes of needles?  Thatís impossible!

INSPECTOR	So is getting into the kingdom while youíre attached to worldly
		things, but Godís power can change people.

PHARISEE	Well, while weíre on the subject of the impossible, Jesus totally
		failed to heal that crowd of folk that came especially to see him
		today.

INSPECTOR	How many people get healed in Nazareth on average?

PHARISEE	About one every now and again, when God in his wisdom hears the
		prayers of a properly certificated preacher and healer who has the
		backing of the synagogue council.

INSPECTOR	And how many were healed today?

PHARISEE	None!

INSPECTOR	Well thatís where youíre wrong!  As Jesus left the platform and got
		to the edge of the crowd, away from your orchestrated protests, he
		saw faith in the eyes of a few who were sick and placed his hands
		on them and they were healed.  Sometimes itís the personís faith
		that lets Godís power through, sometimes their friendsí faith, like
		in that house in Capernaum and sometimes the faith of the listeners
		or his disciples or the synagogue worshippers.

PHARISEE	He said himself he couldnít do any mighty work here in this town
		because of unbelief.  He admitted defeat.

INSPECTOR	Well his defeat, as you put it, still meant there were more people
		healed in Nazareth today than in the last ten years.  Just think
		what could have happened if your mind had been open too.

PHARISEE	You can say what you like; I for one donít believe it.

INSPECTOR	And thatís been your trouble all along.  [To crowds:] Get your
		refunds here and fifty percent discounts on day-trip-to-Capernaum
		tickets.

RTF version of this sketch
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