Dramatic Monologues: ‘Temple Guard’

Since becoming a Christian in 1977 I have used my love of the arts (both visual and performing) to try to serve God. Currently, while working on a painting project, I am sharing with you a series of soliloquies that formed the body of an Easter program that I wrote for my church several years ago. It is designed as a series of answers to the song, “Were You There When They Crucified the Lord?”

I hope you are enjoying them. I have left the stage directions as a guide in the event that you want to use them in your church.

Stage Direction: Temple Guard will go to set A as soon as the lights are off.
Props and Costume: Temple Guard with sword
Music: Bridge music “Were You There” provides transition from previous Soliloquy
Lights: Up on Set A
Sound: Live on Set A

Fifth Soliloquy Temple Guard, Set A
“Was I there when they crucified the Lord? Oh yes, I was there. I was there when the High Priest sent us to find Him and bring Him in for questioning. One of His own disciples, a Joshua I think . . . No that’s not quite right. Judas! That’s it. It was a Judas who had been to see the High Priest earlier that day and offered to sell information on His whereabouts. When we hadn’t heard from him before dark, I figured he took the thirty pieces of silver and high tailed it back to the Galilee. But, sure enough, late in the evening, this guy, this Judas showed up and said he knew where we would be able to find Jesus so we took off following him. I smelled trouble when we left the safety of the city walls. He led us across a valley and up a steep mountainside to an olive grove. Who goes to an olive grove in the middle of the night? Do you know how dark an olive grove is at night? That’s probably why I didn’t see the sword. The rumors were that this was a political thing or a bunch of religious fanatics. We didn’t expect them to be armed. But before I knew it I heard the unmistakable sound of a steel blade whistling through the air. I dodged to the side in the nick of time as the blade came down alongside my head. Blinding pain! I grabbed the place where blood was pouring out of a hole where my ear had been. I don’t know how many weapons they had, but it seemed to me that they had the advantage at that moment. The element of surprise was on their side, and I was clearly out of commission. Then, the most amazing thing happened. Jesus, Himself, stepped forward. He ordered His men to put away their weapons and then HE HEALED ME! I don’t mean that He put some salve or ointment on me and bandaged me up. I mean He picked up that bloody mass of flesh off the ground, touched it back to the side of my gushing, pulsing wound, and He completely and perfectly healed the man who had come to arrest Him. It was amazing. For me it seemed that the whole world should have changed, but it didn’t. Nothing changed at all. As if nothing at all had happened, the troop I was with grabbed Him to take Him back to the High Priest for questioning just as we’d been sent to do, and His disciples all scattered. And me, well . . . I went with the men I worked with. I mean what else could I do. I worked with those guys every day. Being a Temple Guard was what I was trained to do. Later during the trial, all the guys were taunting Him. You know, the blindfold, the spitting. . . all of that. I could tell that the guys were all looking at me. . . wondering if my experience when Jesus touched me had made me soft or something. I was afraid. I had to show them that I was still a man, you know. . . tough. I had to keep their respect. So it was me who. . . who walked up to Him there when He was blindfolded and I . . . I slapped Him, and I said “Okay. You’re a Prophet. Who struck you?” He never said a word, but He turned His face toward me and He smiled gently. He knew. He KNEW that it was I. I had experienced a touch from Him, but I needed the approval of my buddies more. But. . . but what else could I do.”

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