This is a sample of a Scripture drama script prepared by Rev. Miranda. Its’ based on Genesis chapter 37. Contact Rev. Miranda if you’d like the full Joseph cycle!
NARR: Abraham’s son Isaac had twin sons, Jacob and Esau. When he grew up, Jacob, who was also called Israel, had twelve sons, with four wives. But his favorite sons were the two that he had with his favorite wife, Rachel. The oldest was named Joseph; and the youngest, Benjamin. Benjamin was the baby of the family, and his mother Rachel died after having him. So all Israel’s tenderness gathered around his sons Joseph and Benjamin. When this story begins, Joseph is young man, about seventeen years old.
JOSEPH: Hey there! I’m Joseph!
NARR: He took care of the family’s flock of sheep.
JOSEPH: I take care of the flock! It’s really important work.
NARR: He was a helper to his half-brothers, the sons of his father’s other wives, who were older than him.
JOSEPH: I mean, sure, helper, I guess. More like, colleague? Or, Supervisor?
NARR: One day Joseph brought a bad report of them to their father Israel. That means he saw them doing something their father wouldn’t like – and he tattled on them.
JOSEPH: Wait till Dad hears about this…
[During next speech, Joseph puts on robe]
NARR: Now Israel loved Joseph more than any other of his children – except maybe baby Benjamin. And he had a special robe made for Joseph – a long robe with sleeves, in beautiful colors. Very expensive and very special! But when his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him, and could not speak peaceably to him.
DAN: He’s such a twerp!
GAD: So full of himself!
REUBEN: It’s so frustrating that Dad doesn’t even notice the rest of us, no matter what we do.
JUDAH: Joseph had better watch his back.
NARR: Once Joseph had a dream, and he told his brothers about it.
JOSEPH: Listen to this dream that I dreamed! There we were, binding sheaves of wheat in the field. Suddenly my sheaf rose and stood upright; then your sheaves gathered around it, and bowed down to my sheaf. Isn’t that crazy?!
GAD: Do you think you’re going to reign over us?
JUDAH: We’re older than you – and you think you’re going to be in charge of us?
NARR: So they hated him even more because of his dreams and his words. Then he had another dream, and told it to his brothers:
JOSEPH: Hey, I had another dream! In this one, the sun, the moon, and eleven stars were bowing down to me! Pretty cool!
NARR: But when Joseph told this dream to his father and his brothers, his father rebuked him:
ISRAEL: What kind of dream is this that you have had? It sounds like you expect me and your mother and your brothers all to bow to the ground before you!
NARR: His brothers were jealous of him, but his father kept the matter in mind. Now, one day, Joseph’s brothers went to pasture their father’s flock near Shechem, at some distance from the family home. And Israel said to Joseph,
ISRAEL: Your brothers are pasturing the flock at Shechem. Come, I will send you to them, to check on them and see if they’re doing everything they should be. Go, and bring back word to me.
NARR: So Joseph set off to find his brothers and the flock. He didn’t find them at Shechem, but a man told him they were near Dothan. So he set out towards Dothan, and spotted them far off. His brothers also saw Joseph approaching in the distance – and they began to make a plan to kill him.
DAN: Here comes the Dreamer.
GAD: Hey – let’s kill him and throw him into one of these pits!
DAN: We’ll tell Dad that a wild animal ate him.
JUDAH: Then we’ll see what becomes of his dreams!
REUBEN: Uh, guys, let’s not actually kill him? How about we just throw him in a pit to teach him a lesson – but don’t hurt him!
NARR: Reuben said this because he had a secret plan.
REUBEN [stage whisper]: If I sneak back and rescue him and bring him to our father, maybe I’ll become one of his favorite sons too!
NARR: So when Joseph came to his brothers –
JOSEPH: Hi, guys! What’s up?
NARR: – They seized him, and tore off his robe, the long beautiful robe with sleeves that he wore –
JOSEPH [pulling off coat]: Hey!!!
BROTHERS [all shouting at once]: Grab him! Give me that! Not so fancy now! You little twerp! Etc.
NARR: Then they threw him into a pit – a cistern dug in the ground to hold water after the rainy season. The pit was empty; there was no water in it. Then they sat down to eat.
DAN: That was great.
GAD: We’ve taken care of him once and for all.
REUBEN: We’ll let him cool off in there for a while. That’ll show him!
GAD: No, we should leave him in there for good!
NARR: Then, looking up, they saw a caravan of traders traveling on their way down to Egypt, with camels carrying ointment and resin. Then Judah said to his brothers,
JUDAH: What’s in it for us if we just kill our brother and hide the body? I have a better idea. Let’s sell him to those traders, as a slave! That’s better than killing him – it’s not right to harm our brother, our own flesh and blood.
DAN: I guess so…
GAD: Money is good!
REUBEN: I don’t like this plan…
JUDAH: Why not? What’s wrong with it?
REUBEN: What if he escapes and comes back and tells our father what happened?
DAN: He’ll be in Egypt!
GAD: We’re safe! It’s a great plan!
JUDAH: How much silver should we ask for him?
DAN: He’s strong and healthy. We should demand forty silver!
NARR: While they were discussing the plan, another group of traders came along, and noticed Joseph in the pit. They pulled him out – and THEY sold him to the first group of traders, for twenty pieces of silver. When Reuben slipped away from his brothers to try and rescue Joseph, to give him back to their father, he found that Joseph was already gone. He was terrified and rushed back to the others.
REUBEN [freaking out]: He’s gone! He’s gone!
GAD: What do you mean?
REUBEN: He’s not in the pit! I don’t know what happened!
DAN: There goes our forty silver…
REUBEN [really upset – his secret plan is ruined!]: He’s gone – he’s gone! Now what am I going to do?
JUDAH: Calm down, Reuben. It’s not a problem. Look, we have his robe. We’ll kill a goat and dip the coat in the goat’s blood. We can tear it a little, too. Then we’ll take it to Dad and tell him, “Hey, isn’t this Joseph’s coat? We found it like this!”
GAD: He will think a wild animal ate him.
DAN: It’s perfect! Great idea, Judah!
NARR: So that is what they did. They took the bloody, torn robe to Israel.
JUDAH [Hold up bloody coat; sound rehearsed!]: “Hey, isn’t this Joseph’s coat? We found it like this!”
ISRAEL [UPSET!!!]: It is my son’s robe! My beloved son Joseph! A wild animal has eaten him; Joseph must be torn to piece! My son is dead! [Weeps]
NARR: Israel mourned for his son for many days. All his children tried to comfort him.
REUBEN: Dad, you still have all of us…
GAD: We love you, Dad…
ISRAEL: No, I will not be comforted. I will die and go down to the underworld in my grief for my son Joseph.
NARR: Meanwhile, Joseph…. well, that’s a story for tomorrow!