A Christmas Pageant

Our family has an annual tradition of celebrating a Christmas Pageant with another family. We put the date on the calendar months in advance. We have dinner first–a spectacular dinner of homemade pizza and some beautiful dessert. And then, after much giggling and secret preparations of costumes and props, we all repair to the living room for the Pageant. Everyone has to play multiple parts, unless we happen to have invited enough guests to each have only one. The script has so far been the same each year, and was written by my husband. It includes carols that could be rearranged or swapped, if you prefer others. You could add some instrumental interludes in the middle, or have a second act of musical performances. It has been the thing that most helps me to celebrate the Incarnation of Jesus in my heart. I share the text here, in case you’d like to use it–feel free to modify it in any way for your own family.

Christmas Pageant

Parts:
Narrator –
Reader 1
Reader 2
Reader 3
Reader 4
Caesar Augustus
Mary
Joseph
Baby Jesus
Angel of the Lord
Shepherds
Sheep
Wise Men
Simeon

Narrator:
On this evening before Christmas we look forward to the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ – the Messiah – our Savior.
Men and women, starting with Adam and Eve looked forward to the coming of the Savior. The Savior who would crush the head of Satan and sin, in accordance with the Word of God in His great mercy and glory.

Reader 1:
Gen 3:14 Says,
“The LORD God said to the serpent, (who had led Adam and Eve to sin)
“Because you have done this,
cursed are you above all livestock
and above all beasts of the field;
on your belly you shall go,
and dust you shall eat
all the days of your life.
15 I will put enmity between you and the woman,
and between your offspring and her offspring;
he shall bruise(break) your head,
and you shall bruise his heel.”

Narrator:
So the sin of Adam and Eve brought shame and separation – a curse and death – to mankind. But God clothed their shame with a sacrifice and promised that someone would come to bring together what was separated, to undo the curse, and to conquer death.

Reader 2
With joyful expectation of celebrating Christ’s birthday, let’s sing the first verse of Come Thou Long Expected Jesus.

All (singing)
Come Thou Long Expected Jesus – vs.1

Come Thou long expected Jesus,
Born to set Thy people free;
From our fears and sins release us;
Let us find our rest in thee.
Israel’s Strength and Consolation,
Hope of all the earth Thou art,
Dear Desire of ev’ry nation,
Joy of ev’ry longing heart.

Narrator:
God did not forget his promise. God never forgets his promises. For several thousand years He gave strength and consolation to the Israelites, his people, for the glory of the coming savior.

Reader 3
To Abram he made a promise
Gen. 17:4 “Behold, my covenant is with you, and you shall be the father of a multitude of nations. 5 No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham, for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations. 6 I will make you exceedingly fruitful, and I will make you into nations, and kings shall come from you. 7 And I will establish my covenant between me and you and your offspring after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your offspring after you.

Reader 4
To Judah he declared His promise:
Gen 49: 10 The scepter shall not depart from Judah,
nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet,
until tribute comes to him;
and to him shall be the obedience of the peoples.

Reader 1
Through Isaiah the Lord spoke:
Is. 9: 6 For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given;
and the government shall be upon his shoulder,
and his name shall be called*
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
7 Of the increase of his government and of peace
there will be no end,
on the throne of David and over his kingdom,
to establish it and to uphold it
with justice and with righteousness
from this time forth and forevermore.
The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this.

Reader 2
Through Micah, just 400 years before the coming of Jesus, God restated the hope
Mic. 5:
2 But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, who are too little to be among the clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to be ruler in Israel,
whose origin is from of old,
from ancient days.
3 Therefore he shall give them up until the time when she who is in labor has given birth; then the rest of his brothers shall return to the people of Israel.
4 And he shall stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the LORD, in the majesty of the name of the LORD his God. And they shall dwell secure, for now he shall be great to the ends of the earth.
5 And he shall be their peace.

Narrator: (speaking)
So the stage was set for the coming of the one promised to Adam and Eve and affirmed through Abraham, Isaac, Judah, David, Isaiah, Daniel, and the other prophets.

Our stage is set to celebrate the night of his coming also.

Gal. 4:4 tells us that “when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, 5 to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.”

Luke 2:1 In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus

Caesar Augustus: (speaking with a kingly voice)
“The whole world should be registered”

Narrator: (speaking)
2 This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And all went to be registered, each to his own town. 4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5 to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child.

Mary and Joseph: (walk across room to Bethlehem)

Narrator: (speaking)
6 And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth.

Mary: (speaking)
Oh!!! I think it’s time

Narrator: (speaking )
And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.

Mary and Joseph: (acting)
(Mary wraps up baby Jesus and lays him in a nest on the floor. Both Mary and Joseph kneel and admire him)

Narrator:
Luke 2:8 And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with fear.

Shepherds: (acting)
(Shaking in fear)

Narrator: (speaking)
10 And the angel said to them,

Angel of the Lord: (speaking)
“Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy that will be for all the people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.”

Narrator:
13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,

All: (speaking)
14 “Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”*

All: (singing)
Hark! The Herald Angels Sing

Hark! the herald Angels sing,
“Glory to the new-born King;
Peace on earth, and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled”:
Joyful all ye nations rise,
Join the triumph of the skies,
With th’angelic host proclaim,
“Christ is born in Bethlehem.”
Hark! the herald Angels sing
“Glory to the new-born King.”

Narrator: (speaking)
Luke 2:15 When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another,

Shepherds: (speaking)
“Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.”

Narrator: (speaking)
16 And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger.

Shepherds: (acting)
(Go to baby Jesu)

Narrator: (speaking)
17 And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child. 18 And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. 20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.

All: (singing)
Angels we have heard on high,
Sweetly singing o’er the plains:
And the mountains in reply,
Echoing their joyous strains.
Gloria in excelsis Deo!
Gloria in excelsis Deo!

Come to Bethlehem, and see
Him whose birth the angels sing;
Come, adore on bended knee
Christ the Lord, the newborn King.
Gloria in excelsis Deo!
Gloria in excelsis Deo!

Narrator:
Not only the shepherds welcomed Jesus into the world, wise men from the East also came – being led by a star. This star led them to Bethlehem and the place where Jesus, Mary and Joseph were staying.
Matt 2 :11 And going into the house they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh.

Wise Men: (acting) (Give gifts to Jesus)

Narrator:
12 And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.

Wise men: (acting)
(Leave scene another way)

Narrator:
About a month later, Joseph and Mary took baby Jesus to the temple. There a devout man of God, named Simeon met Joseph, Mary, and Jesus. God had told Simeon that he would not die before he had met the promised Savior.
Simeon took baby Jesus in his arms and blessed God.

Simeon: (speaking)
Luke 2:29 “Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace,according to your word; 30 for my eyes have seen your salvation 31 that you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, 32 a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to your people Israel.”

Narrarator: (speaking)
Luke 2:33 And Jesus’ father and his mother marveled at what was said about him.

Mary and Joseph: (acting)
(Marvel at what they have heard)

Narrator:
34 And Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother,

Simeon:
“Behold, this child is appointed for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign that is opposed 35 (and a sword will pierce through your own soul also), so that thoughts from many hearts may be revealed.”

Narrator:
Anna – a prophetess, was also there and she praised God because of Jesus and spoke about him to all the people that were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem.

40 And the Jesus grew and became strong, filled with wisdom. And the favor of God was upon him.

And so we look forward to celebrating the birth of Jesus again this year, knowing that he humbled himself coming as a baby. He came to take our sins and nail them to the cross – to be our Savior. And we look forward, remembering the promises of old, to the time when Jesus will come again and rule with peace and glory. And we will dwell with him in heaven.

Merry Christmas

All: (singing)
Good Christian Men, Rejoice

Good Christian men, rejoice
With heart and soul and voice!
Give ye heed to what we say:
Jesus Christ is born today.
Man and beast before him bow,
And he is in the manger now:
Christ is born today,
Christ is born today!

Good Christian men, rejoice
With heart and soul and voice!
Now ye need not fear the grave:
Jesus Christ was born to save;
Calls you one and call you all,
To gain his everlasting hall.
Christ was born to save,
Christ was born to save!

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~ by Michael on December 5, 2007.

3 Responses to “A Christmas Pageant”

  1. hi and do u like doing Christmas Pagents

  2. Love the idea… thanks for the script.. I hope to do this in the future when I have a family. Gregorio

  3. Thanks so much, JUST what I needed all the way over in Almaty, Kazakhstan and our Christmas party tonight!!! Isn’t Internet GREAT?

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