The Corinthian Spat - A Play

SETTING: Seven Corinthians sitting around discussing the passage of Pauls first letter to them in I Corinthians 1:11-17.
#4 is the person to be holding the scroll and reading from it. When he has read it then place on table in front of him. Low table. Place people around at varying heights so they can be seen by audience and present variation for a bit more reality.


1. Junias (of Paul)

2. Androcles (of Apollos)

3. Julius (Neutral)

4. Hermes (of household of Chloe - for Unity)

5. Josephus (Neutral)

6. Bartemas (of Cephas)

7. Persius (of Christ)

The seven are mingling around with various others and Hermes is looking at the scroll on the table with Julias and Josephas discussing the concerned passage. The partners of some of the others leave and go over and join (one by one) Hermes. First to come up is Bartemas.

BARTEMAS: Hey Hermes, Paul's letter sounded like someone went squeeling to him to add to our bickering from your household. Yea (looking and pointing at a passage on scroll) right off the bat he fingers, (reading the passage) here it is. (Reads I Corinthians 1:11-17). You're a Pauline follower if ever there was one, running to him to solve our problems.
HERMES: Bartemas, do you have it messed up. If I had been talking with Peter I would have said the same and then you would have received the same message from your role model. The question is, 'What are we going to do about it?' (The others have come up during this discussion and are all now around the table.)
PERSIUS: I've always said I'm of Christ and can't see anything wrong with that. Woe to him who isn't in fact.
HERMES: Persius, saying that you're a follower of Christ is one thing. We all should be, but to exclude your fellow believers from a separate group or clique on your special statement, is just as bad as saying 'I'm of Cephas' (he looks at Bartemas) or 'I'm of Paul' (he looks at Junias - then he looks back at Persius). Just what do you think is the basis upon which we get together? You can look at Christ in just the same way Junias admires Paul. He is not just a good role model we ooh and awe over. Those who worship Christ must worship Him in the Spirit. Fandom is out of the question. Julias, what is the basis of our fellowship here?
JULIAS: As far as I can see it and Paul indicates in the letter here it's our unity in the Gospel. We've all come to one Gospel. Different ministers, whom we admire, have helped us grow.
ANDROCLES: I agree we have unity by all being converted to the same Gospel but I can't see any crime in gathering with those who were specially blessed by a certain minister.
JOSEPHUS: When your Apollos came here with the Gospel and you were converted (addressing Androcles) did he form you into the special 'Church of Apollos in Corinth' or did Peter form his converts into the 'Jerusalemic Church of Corinth'? No. They knew that was wrong and Paul now condemns that here. (He taps on the scroll.) All these various ministers directed their converts to gather with all the other Christians here in town.
JUNIAS: I think your reasoning's hogwash. I think you're misunderstanding Paul. I ought to know, he's my hero. My mother used to say, 'When you find someone of noble character, stick with him, maybe some of him will rub off.' I know Paul's a pretty spectacular fellow and he's never led anyone astray since his conversion. I can't go wrong to cling to him. See you later. (Junias turns here and departs rather huffy.)
PERSIUS: Enough of this kind of talk. I'll gather with those who swear allegiance to Christ. That is safe. (Persius turns and goes.)
ANDROCLES: I'm of the same mind still.
BARTEMAS: Ditto! (Androcles and Bartemas both turn and go at this.)
JULIAS: (Addressing Hermes and Josephas.) Well now, where does that leave us? To be pleasing to Christ do we, and can we, join any of their private gatherings when the gathering is based on, hinges on, their devotion to something other than the stand of Christ crucified?
JOSEPHAS: Paul stated further on in his letter here (he reads I Corinthians 3:1-4). Gathering with those on such a basis is carnal and Paul said that the way of the flesh is sinful and breathes forth nothing but death. To join and compromise with them is to compromise to sin, not merely toleration of immaturity.
HERMES: (Addressing Josephas and Julias for the first three names.) Paulines, Cephites, Apollites... (Now addressing the audience) Lutherans, Baptists, Mennonites, Presbyterians, Methodists, Salvation Army Members, Pentecostals, Foursquare Assemblies, and the list goes on. When all around you in your community split off into their special groups so there is none left who is not affiliated with some clique, who do you join? Paul, Apollos, Peter? In the eyes of the community the ones who refuse to align with a clique become the carnal ones now days. Where do we go from here?....

For a message on sectarianism, please follow the link below.

Message - Sin of Denominationalism

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Free to Copy under Creative Commons BY-NC-ND3.0 License by Darrell Farkas
All quotations are from the King James Version of the Bible

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