Act One, Scene 1

Segment 1.2


 

[Music cue: “Come Deliver UsMP3, PDF ]

(The temple. The shepherds Asa, Eli, and NATHAN enter. NATHAN is carrying a lamb and singing.)
 

NATHAN
Yibone hamikdosh ir Tsiyon t’ma le
V’shom noshire shir chodosh
Uvirnono naale.1

(PRIESTS, TEMPLE BOYS and TOWNSPEOPLE fill the stage singing.)

CHORUS
Come deliver us!
Come deliver us!, etc.

CHORUS WOMEN
He will come
In mightiness and pow’r,
With watchmen on the tow’r,
He will come deliver us!

CHORUS (ALL)
Come deliver us!
Come deliver us!, etc.

CHORUS MEN
He will come,
His sword aloft and blazing,
Resplendent and amazing,
He will come deliver us!

CHORUS (ALL)
Come deliver us! 
Come deliver us!  Ooo.

(The music continues. A circle of priests forms at center stage. They draw lots. Atop the colonnade, NEPHI appears.)

NEPHI: And my father spoke concerning a prophet who would come before the Messiah, to prepare the way of the Lord, even that he should baptize the Messiah with water.2

(The circle of priests opens, revealing Zacharias with the lot. The other priests congratulate him and bring him incense. NATHAN comes forward, carrying the lamb.)

NATHAN
Come, oh come, my little lamb,
Sweet and soft and pure.
Give your life for all of us.
Make our pathway sure.
Go, and when you’re here no more,
As a shepherd be.
I will follow you to heav’n, 
To eternity.

(Underscore continues. MALACHI appears on the colonnade.)

MALACHI: Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant.3

(The priests and chorus kneel in supplication.)

ZACHARIAS (praying): Oh, Lord. I stand before Thee in this holy place. I thank Thee. I thank Thee. I pray Thy merciful blessings be upon me, upon my household, my dear wife, and upon all Thy children, the house of Israel.

(Zacharias kneels alone at the altar. The angel GABRIEL appears before him. Zacharias sees him and shrinks back.)

GABRIEL: Fear not, Zacharias: for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt have joy and gladness. And thou shalt call his name John; and many shall rejoice at his birth. For he shall... make ready a people prepared for the Lord.4

ZACHARIAS: Whereby shall I know this? for I am an old man, and my wife well stricken in years.5

GABRIEL: [And] I am Gabriel, that stand in the presence of God; and am sent to speak unto thee, and to [show] thee these glad tidings. And, behold, thou shalt be dumb, and not [be] able to speak because thou believest not my words, which shall be fulfilled.6

(Gabriel departs. The priests and chorus rise and come forward in anticipation. Zacharias cannot convey the wondrous event that has just occurred. All are bewildered.)

CHORUS MEN
Come, come, 
Come, come,
Come deliver us!
Come deliver us!, etc.

CHORUS WOMEN
He will come
In mightiness and pow’r,
With watchmen on the tow’r.
He will come deliver us!

CHORUS (ALL)
Come deliver us, etc.

CHORUS MEN
He will come,
His sword aloft and blazing.
Resplendent and amazing,
He will come deliver us!

(Zacharias exits, assisted by Ezra and BENJAMIN, and older boy.)

CHORUS (ALL)
Come deliver us.

CHORUS WOMEN
He will come.

CHORUS MEN
He will come.

CHORUS (ALL)
He will come deliver us.

(All exit.)

 

NOTES
1. English translation: “Let the temple be restored, Zion refilled, that we may come up singing a new song.”
2. See 1 Nephi 10:1, 4–5, 7–11, 17.
3. Malachi 3:1.
4. See Luke 1:13–15, 17.
5. Luke 1:18.
6. See Luke 1:19–20.


Back Return to the Scripts main page.