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FEELGOOD 8'?m4f Witnessing, evangelism, cure the disease of sin

(scene: judge's bench and witness stand or podium and barstool)

JUDGE -- (enters wearing black robe, crosses to bench, pounds
gavel) This court is back in session. The plaintiff may call its 
next witness.

PLAINTIFF -- (enters carrying legal pad) The plaintiff calls
Elizabeth Johnson.

ELIZABETH -- (enters, sits in witness chair, swearing in is
optional)

PLAINTIFF -- State your name for the record.

ELIZABETH -- Elizabeth Johnson.

PLAINTIFF -- Do you have a professional relationship with the
accused?

ELIZABETH -- Yes. He's the pastor of our church.

PLAINTIFF -- And did the accused also have a professional
relationship with your husband?

ELIZABETH -- Yes. There was a professional relationship in both
directions. The accused was my husband's pastor. And my husband
was his family doctor.

PLAINTIFF -- Can you tell the court why you use the past tense?

ELIZABETH -- My husband died recently of a sudden stroke.

PLAINTIFF -- You don't blame the accused for your husband's
untimely death, do you?

ELIZABETH -- No. Of course not.

PLAINTIFF -- But you ARE accusing your pastor of malpractice.

ELIZABETH -- Yes.

PLAINTIFF -- Why?

ELIZABETH -- Because we went to his church for ten years, but he
never talked about sin.

PLAINTIFF -- And why do you consider that to be malpractice?

ELIZABETH -- After my husband died, someone else told me about
sin.

PLAINTIFF -- And what did you discover about sin?

ELIZABETH -- Hebrews 9:27 says that after we die, we face
judgement for our sins.

PLAINTIFF -- And what are the implications for your husband?

ELIZABETH -- My husband died without having his sins forgiven.
So, according to the Bible, his judgement involves eternal
exclusion from heaven.

PLAINTIFF -- Are you saying that in ten years of preaching, your 
pastor never once mentioned the need to have one's sins
forgiven?

ELIZABETH -- Not once.

PLAINTIFF -- After your husband died, did you have YOUR sins 
forgiven?

ELIZABETH -- Yes. I put my trust in the death of Jesus as
payment for my sins.

PLAINTIFF -- And how many times did you hear about the need for
forgiveness before you received forgiveness?

ELIZABETH -- Just once.

PLAINTIFF -- Just once.

ELIZABETH -- Yes. The Bible is very clear about the need for
forgiveness and the method God set up to have my sins paid for.

PLAINTIFF -- Can you tell the court what the implications are,
now that your sins have been forgiven?

ELIZABETH -- Yes. The Bible is very clear about that too. It's
says that those who trust Jesus to pay for their sins will spend
eternity in heaven.

PLAINTIFF -- Eternity.

ELIZABETH -- Yes.

PLAINTIFF -- In heaven.

ELIZABETH -- Yes.

PLAINTIFF -- Please tell the court what the implications are for 
you and your husband.

ELIZABETH -- Well, since I'm going to spend eternity in Heaven
and my husband will spend eternity excluded from Heaven, I'll
never see him again.

PLAINTIFF -- So, what your saying is that because of the
malpractice of the accused, you and your husband will never see
each other EVER AGAIN?

ELIZABETH -- That's right.

PLAINTIFF -- (exiting) Your witness.

DEFENSE -- Mrs Johnson, isn't it true that my client sued your
husband recently for malpractice?

ELIZABETH -- Yes. That's true.

DEFENSE -- Uh huh. Can you tell the court the nature of the law
suit?

ELIZABETH -- The pastor had a rather rare blood disease. My
husband only treated the symptoms of the disease. But the 
pastor's condition grew worse.

DEFENSE -- Uh huh. Isn't it true that your husband never did
cure my client of his disease?

ELIZABETH -- Yes. When his condition grew worse, the pastor
tried another doctor.

DEFENSE -- So, he sought a second opinion.

ELIZABETH -- That's right.

DEFENSE -- And it was the OTHER doctor who finally cured the
disease.

ELIZABETH -- That's right.

DEFENSE -- Mrs Johnson, isn't it true that the only reason
you're suing my client is in retribution for the medical
malpractice law suit?

ELIZABETH -- No.

DEFENSE -- (exiting) I have no further questions.

ELIZABETH -- It's not.

PLAINTIFF -- (entering) Redirect your honor?

JUDGE -- Proceed.

PLAINTIFF -- Mrs Johnson, can you tell the court who won that
medical malpractice law suit?

ELIZABETH -- My husband.

DEFENSE -- Objection. Relevance.

PLAINTIFF -- Defense counsel began the trip down this road when
she impugned the motives of the witness. I'm merely showing that
the medical malpractice lawsuit cost the witness nothing. Ergo,
the witness can't possibly be accused of retribution.

JUDGE -- I'll allow it. Continue.

PLAINTIFF -- Can you tell the court how the accused came to
receive that second opinion that finally cured the disease?

ELIZABETH -- Yes. My husband referred the pastor to a doctor who
specialized in bloodborn pathogens.

PLAINTIFF -- So, the doctor used due diligence to find a cure
for the disease, even though he himself was ignorant of the
cure.

ELIZABETH -- That's right.

PLAINTIFF -- Mrs Johnson, can you see any parallels between the
medical malpractice lawsuit and this professional malpractice
lawsuit?

ELIZABETH -- Yes. In both cases, the mistake was treating the
SYMPTOMS of the disease rather than attacking the cause of the
disease and eradicating it.

PLAINTIFF -- And how did the accused treat the symptoms of the
disease?

ELIZABETH -- For the last ten years, the pastor has preached on
healing the pain, on making yourself feel better about yourself,
on working harder, being a better person.

PLAINTIFF -- But that didn't attack the CAUSE of the disease?

ELIZABETH -- No. As I found out after it was too late, the
disease is sin and the only cure for sin is forgiveness. All we
needed from the pastor was a referral to the specialist who
could eradicate the sin.

PLAINTIFF -- Perhaps the pastor was ignorant of the cure.

ELIZABETH -- No. After my husband died, I found out that the
pastor made a conscious decision ten years ago NOT to talk about 
the disease because he thought people didn't want to hear it.

PLAINTIFF -- Well, it's true, isn't it? People DON'T want to
hear it.

ELIZABETH -- No, of course not. But when people are sick, they
NEED to hear the bad news. And they need to hear the good news
that there's a referral to a specialist. Anything less is
malpractice.

PLAINTIFF -- No more questions.

JUDGE -- Cross examine, counselor?

DEFENSE -- (approaches) Mrs Johnson, you're suing my client for 
one million dollars, isn't that right?

ELIZABETH -- Yes, that's right.

DEFENSE -- You're attorney seems to have made it clear that your 
motive for this lawsuit was not retribution. Isn't it possible 
that your motive might be old-fashioned greed?

ELIZABETH -- No.

DEFENSE -- No? That's your rejoinder? No?

ELIZABETH -- I've already signed a letter of intent to give the 
money to the church. I won't get a dime from this lawsuit.

DEFENSE -- (looks offstage in disbelief) Not a dime?!

ELIZABETH -- Not a dime.

DEFENSE -- If you didn't do it for revenge or for the money, why 
did you go to all the time and trouble to sue my client?

ELIZABETH -- I want the pastor to stop treating the symptoms and 
start treating the disease.

DEFENSE -- That's it?

ELIZABETH -- That's it.

DEFENSE -- (exiting quietly) No more questions.

JUDGE -- You may step down.

ELIZABETH -- (exits)

JUDGE -- Call your next witness.

PLAINTIFF -- No more witnesses, Your Honor. The plaintiff rests.

JUDGE -- Defense counsel may call its first witness.

DEFENSE -- (enters) Your Honor, my client has had a change of
heart. We'd like to settle.

JUDGE -- My chambers. This court is adjourned.

(all exit)

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