Walking on the water
An EasyEnglish Drama Unit (Accessible Easy English) on Matthew 14:22-33
About this unit
This unit, “Walking on the water” has three parts.
1. Introduction for the teacher
2. English word study
3. A speaking play, "Walking on the water" – including Script in AEE
1. Introduction for the teacher
Psalm 89:9 says ‘You rule the roaring sea and calm its waves’ (Contemporary English Version). Some Bible teachers say this verse tells of the coming of Christ. They say it means he will be a blessing to everything in the world.
Other teachers cite God's power to control what he made. They point to the parting of the Red Sea (Exodus 14:16), to Noah's flood (Genesis 7:4), and to God's setting limits for the sea (Job 38:8-11).
The disciples understood that walking on water was something only God was able to do. So they worshipped Jesus as the Son of God.
Matthew 14:22-33 New English Bible; Contemporary English Bible; New International Bible; New Revised Standard Bible
Matthew Henry, Complete Commentary on the Whole Bible
Spurgeon's Treasury of David
John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
2. English Word Study
Not many English words are spelt like talk. Here are four words spelled with the letters -alk.
talk - to say words
chalk - a white stick for writing on a blackboard
walk - take steps and move
stalk - the stem of a plant; a creeping walk
These four words may be nouns or verbs. We must look at the way we can use them in a sentence.
Nouns name a person, a place, or a thing.
In these sentences, the four words are nouns. They name a thing.
The talk was about birds.
Her talk was hard to understand.
He had chalk in his hand.
Chalk is made from white rocks.
A stalk of wheat is on the table.
She waves a stalk of flowers.
The walk to the city was too long.
A walk in the park is fun.
Put a noun in the sentence.
I picked a _ _ _ _ _ of corn.
It is a long _ _ _ _ to Jerusalem.
His _ _ _ _ was on TV.
She had a piece of _ _ _ _ _.
In these sentences, the words are verbs. They show that someone or something acts.
I talk on the telephone.
We talk to the teacher.
Cats stalk rats and catch them.
We stalk birds, but we cannot catch them.
I walk to church.
They walk to school.
Put a verb in these sentences.
Did you _ _ _ _ to the park today?
A lion will _ _ _ _ _ a deer.
I heard him _ _ _ _ on TV.
Sometimes the word chalk is used as a verb.
The teacher said, "Chalk a mark here".
"Chalk it up to luck" is an old saying.
Mark if the word is a noun or verb.
Remember, nouns name something. Verbs are acting words.
1. I heard a talk about birds. ___Noun ___Verb
2. She will walk with you. ___Noun ___Verb
3. Can your cat stalk birds? ___Noun ___Verb
4. He had a stalk of wheat. ___Noun ___Verb
5. I put the chalk on the table. ___Noun ___Verb
6. He talks a lot. ___Noun ___Verb
7. Chalk is made from rocks. ___Noun ___Verb
8. Let's walk to the river. ___Noun ___Verb
Answers: 1 Noun, 2 Verb, 3 Verb, 4 Noun, 5 Noun, 6 Verb, 7 Noun, 8 Verb
3. A speaking play, "Walking on the water"
Walking on the water
by Frances Jones
Bench or four or five chairs for a boat
Chair for land
Blue cloth, a long strip
Grey or brown cloth to represent land
Bucket for bailing the boat
Long pole, for steering the boat
Stage directions are on the actor’s right and left.
A bench or four or five chairs tied together so they can be pulled to the right or moved to the right by James, John and Peter. (Chairs right of centre if not tied.) Chairs are slightly toward the back. Chairs face the audience. They represent a boat.
A strip of blue cloth lies flat across the front stage floor, extending into the wings. Ends will be waved from off stage to represent stormy waves.
Another chair, stage left, is covered with brown or grey cloth. This chair represents the hill Jesus sits on.
Script in AEE
Jesus, Peter, Andrew, John and James walk on stage from the left.
JAMES: (Looking back) So many people! There were at least 5000 men back there. I do not know how you did it, Jesus, but we fed them all!
JOHN: People follow you everywhere, Jesus. Remember when the people were so close you had to get into a boat? You had to push off before you were able to talk to them.
JESUS: Yes, I remember. (Stops at the hill chair). I'm very tired. I will stop here and rest. You go on to the boat.
PETER: We will stay with you, Jesus.
JESUS: No, I am going to rest and pray. You go to the boat. I will come to you later.
JOHN: (To the others) Come on. Jesus needs to rest. He does not need us here. (He starts to the boat, as if wading in shallow water. James follows.
The cloth waves a little.)
PETER: I want to stay with you, Jesus.
JESUS: No, Peter. Go with the others. I will come later. (Jesus sits on the land chair and bows his head.)
Peter, looking back, follows James and John. They push the boat off, climb in and sit down. James picks up the pole and holds it loosely under one arm.
The stage gets dark; it is quiet. The cloth begins to wave a little more.
Peter, James and John are asleep.
JOHN: (Sitting up) We are going to have a storm. Listen to that wind.
JAMES: Yes, and the waves are getting big. What time is it, anyway? (He holds the pole with both hands.)
The stage gets lighter and lighter.
JOHN: (Looking up) The sun is not up yet. It must be about four o'clock in the morning. (The cloth begins to wave higher and higher.) Peter! Start bailing! We're taking in water! James, keep the bow into the waves!
JAMES: (Stands up, holding the pole with both hands. It is hard to hold the pole steady.) I am trying, but the wind and waves make it hard.
Jesus starts walking to the boat.
PETER: (Peter gets the pail and starts throwing out water. He stops and stares.) What's that?
JOHN: Peter, Peter! Keep bailing. We are taking on water! What is the matter with you?
PETER: Look. Look out there. It is a spirit.
JOHN: (Afraid) You are right! A spirit, a spirit!
JAMES: A storm spirit coming on the water!
The cloth is waving hard. James is having a hard time with the pole.
JESUS: (Calling) Do not be afraid. It is I.
PETER: Oh, Jesus, it is you! Jesus, tell me to come to you on the water.
Peter climbs out of the boat and starts walking to Jesus. James and John watch with open mouths. The cloth is still waving hard.
PETER: I am doing it! I am walking on the water! (He looks down. He is afraid and begins to fall. He throws out his hands.) Save me, Jesus!
JESUS: (Gets Peter's hands and pulls him up) Oh, you with little faith. I am here. Why are you afraid?
Jesus and Peter climb into the boat. Jesus holds his hands over the water.
The cloth stops waving. James puts the pole under one arm again.
JAMES: (With wide eyes) Jesus walked on the water. We saw him.
JOHN: (Whispering) The storm is gone. The winds are gone. Only God rules the wind and the sea.
(John, James and Peter kneel and bow their heads.)
JOHN and JAMES and PETER: Jesus, you are the Son of God!
© 1997-2003, Wycliffe Associates (UK)
This publication is written in Accessible EasyEnglish.
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