Summary: A reflection on the promises made to Abraham prior to the birth of Isaac. A contrast is made between Abraham’s quiet, determined faith and Sarah’s more pragmatic, cynical take on things. Keywords: Faith, patience.
Style: Dramatic. Duration: 7min
Actors: 1M, 1F
Abraham and Sarah
(Setting: Abraham’s tent near the great trees of Mamre. (Sarah is bustling around on stage, tidying up the tent.)
Sarah: Abram! Abram! How many times have I told you not to leave your sandals all over the throws?
Abraham: (enters yawning) Sorry, dear. Short term memory lapse, or something. Must be my age. Anyway, my name isn’t Abram anymore. It’s Abraham.
Sarah: I don’t believe this. Are you still on about that? I thought that was a joke.
Abraham: No. God told me to change it – in a dream.
Sarah: So God’s having a laugh then.
Abraham: What do you mean?
Sarah: Think about it. It wasn’t bad enough you having a name that meant “exalted father”, you’re now going to go around calling yourself “father of many nations.” At your age you’re not even going to hear the patter of tiny feet, let alone the stampede of many nations.
Abraham: Well, there is Ishmael…
Sarah: Don’t talk to me about him.
Abraham: Sarah, listen. This is God we’re talking about. Think of all the promises he has made to us.
Sarah: Yes, let’s think about them shall we? What was the first one? “Leave your country, your people, your father’s household and go to a land I will show you, and I will make you a great nation.” That was nearly 25 years ago now. Well we’re in this land, but we’re hardly a nation. We’ve been stuck in tents. I’m sick of tents. And when you had the opportunity to choose a nicer place, you let Lot take first pickings. Look at him now – settled in a nice fertile valley, close to the city… Civilisation. Ah, what I wouldn’t give for a bit of civilisation… Oh, and Lot’s wife, decked out in all the latest fashions, invited to all the best parties. They’ve landed on their feet, those two – become quite the pillars of the community. You were too generous to them.
Abraham: Are you saying you’re not happy, Sarah?
Sarah: No, it’s not that. It’s just that you’re the one supposedly being promised all these blessings by God, and yet it’s everyone else who seems to be receiving them.
Abraham: But, Sarah, it’s more than that. All these years, all these promises, I feel I have been blessed. I feel I’m getting closer to God, I’m learning to understand him more.
Sarah: So what happened in Egypt with Pharaoh?
Abraham: Yes, that was my mistake. I’d rather not talk about it.
Sarah: Look, Abram – Abraham – I don’t want to knock you, but for 25 years now you have been faithfully following what you believe God is telling you. Surely you should have received some sort of reward by now!
Abraham: But that’s exactly what I’m saying, Sarah. I have. I am. It’s like something God told me a few years ago now – “I am your shield, your very great reward” – he is my reward.
Sarah: I know. I’ve heard it all before. And then God went on and told you your offspring would be like the stars in the sky. Well, some starry sky that is – one child.
Abraham: But I believe him, Sarah. I don’t know how it’s going to happen, but I believe it will. God has promised it.
Sarah: Through Ishmael - the slave’s son.
Abraham: Well, yes, through him, but also through you.
Sarah: Oh, Abraham, don’t make me laugh. How long have we been married? And how close have I come to being pregnant? Not once. I was barren before we left home. 25 years of travelling has hardly improved matters.
Abraham: No, listen, Sarah. The last time God spoke to me, he made a promise about you. You will be blessed. You will have a child – by this time next year.
Sarah: Now you’re making fun of me. You’re an old man, Abraham. You’ve gone mad. It can’t be… Abram – Abraham – what’s the matter? You’ve gone all funny.
Abraham: Three men have just appeared outside the tent. Wait here. I need to go out and meet them.
(Abraham exits. Sarah looks out the tent and freezes)
© Copyright Daniel Carlson, all rights reserved. The script may not be reproduced, translated or copied in any medium, including books, CDs and on the Internet, without written permission of the author.