Typical talk show studio: Desk and couch forefront. Backdrop blue with title of show “Papa’s House” in bold gold letters.
Scene opens with close shot of Rich Pappas, the host of his own local TV talk show, “Papa’s House” finishing with the punchline of a joke.
Rich Pappas: Thank you. Thank you. Now, let’s get started with our next guest. He is the author of Living Faith and caught my attention because of the controversy it has stirred, not among non-Christians but within the Christian community. He is also a psychologist with a little bit of controversy surrounding his past as well. I welcome Josh Crockett.
Audience applause over music (upbeat version of “Faith of Our Fathers”); Pappas shakes hands with Josh who whispers gratitude and the fact that he is very nervous in Pappas’ ear. Pappas reassures him and directs him to his seat.
Full view of set as Josh is seated.
Pappas: Catfish selected “Faith of Our Fathers” for the band to play on your way to your seat, but parts of your book are a little critical of the faith-based tradition. Am I correct in this observation?
Move to shot of Josh.
Josh: There are sections in the book where I question some of today’s American Christianity’s focus of attention concerning spiritual Issues. In that way, yes, your observation is correct.
Pan to Pappas
Pappas: Quoting from your book, “I believe there is enough evidence to blame the moral declension of America as much on complacent, judgmental and/or self-righteous Christianity as any movie theme, music genre or educational philosophy.” This quote caused quite a stir among conservative Christians. Could you elaborate?
Shot of both Josh and Pappas
Josh: I was trying to take an honest look at modern American religious Christianity which has strong influence on many parts of our culture – good and bad. It struck me after claiming to be a Christian for several years that I was good at following rules, but poor at heeding and following the Spirit of God. And then after closer examination, I was good at following the rules I liked the most. How was that different from non-Christians? It wasn’t, except there were some non-Christians who were more humble, more compassionate, more accepting of others and more loving. I didn’t like what I saw. I first saw it in other Christians and then through a series of humbling events, I saw it in me.
Pappas: (Close up) Could the “humbling events” you mention be when you were accused of immorality with a teen girl you were counseling?
(Audience gasps in unison)
Josh: (Close up) That was one of the events, followed by a couple of uncomfortable meetings with the deacons, the young lady and her parents and finally, the end of my relationship with my fiancé at the time.
Audience groans – a mixture of empathy from some and disbelief from others
Pappas: How old was this “young lady?” (Strong emphasis on young)
Josh: Eighteen, at the time of the incidents stirred by the accusation. I had counseled her for over a year.
Crowd murmurs – show shot of audience talking with one another
Pappas: Was she attractive?
Josh: In today’s standards, she would be considered attractive.
Pappas: How about in Josh Crockett standards, was she attractive?
Josh: She was attractive.
Pappas: Since you are Christian, you will tell me the truth, of course. Was there some fact to the accusation?
Josh: None. There was no immoral action involved, whatsoever.
Pappas: Matthew 5: 27-29, “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”
Josh: The verse doesn’t apply in this situation. I did not lust or even look lustfully at her. She was my counselee. But I am glad you brought up that verse.
Pappas: Oh, why is that?
Josh: Some Christians have been taught and therefore apply that verse as a warning. It has also been used to point a finger at those who would lust. Others think the verse ridiculous, because a look isn’t adultery. Yet, neither is 100% correct in their interpretation.
Pappas: You had me agreeing until you said neither is correct. You must give us your interpretation.
Josh: Matthew 5 and much of Christ’s teaching shows how far culture has moved away from the truth. A lustful look is an act of adultery in your heart. Only Jesus who knew no sin can point an accusing finger, because “All have sinned… .” Yet, Christ’s purpose was not to condemn but to show us how far we’d come from original creation and the Creator and by sacrificing his life, lead us into a right relationship with the Creator and God’s creation. John 3:17, “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.”
Pappas: Well, I’d like to continue this discussion, but we need to pause here and let our sponsor have their moment. We’ll be right back with Josh Crockett, author of Living Faith right after this break.
Band plays as scene fades
I write about what I'm thinking or what I've imagined in an effort to regain that childhood imagination and marry with my many years of real experiences. I'm getting better at it the more I write.I am a published author of two romantic intrigue novels.My books can be found at Amazon.com or if you want a personalized copy, by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org.