God’s on First

I am a big Abbott and Costello fan. I love that slapstick comedy and the incredible timing the had. One of their greatest sketches is the Who’s on First? bit. I was watching this one day not long after I had written the Dr. Seuss adaptation of Green Eggs and Ham called Folks With Sin. I decided to take a stab at re-writing Who’s on First? to explain the Trinity. Below is a video of Abbott and Costello performing the original sketch to set the tone for this piece if you care to watch it.

God’s on First.

Me: Well, Sammy, I’m going to Paraguay. You know the Pastor down at the church? He gave me a job as a Missionary.

Sammy: Look, Ken, if you’re a Missionary, you must know a lot about God and stuff.

Me: I most certainly do.

Sammy: Well, I’m not a Christian but I been thinkin’ ‘bout it. Maybe you could tell me about God so I could get to know Him a little better.

Me: Sure no problem. Ok let’s see there’s God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.

Sammy: Hey, what are you talking about? I want to know about God, you know G-O-D.

Me: I’m telling you about God but it can get a little tricky. They got this Trinity, see.

Sammy: Trinity?

Me: Trinity.

Sammy: Ok, let’s make it easy. Who do you serve?

Me: God

Sammy: Ok. So God died for your sins.

Me: No, that was Jesus.

Sammy: I thought you said you serve God.

Me: I do.

Sammy: I thought Jesus was a man?

Me: He was, 100%.

Sammy: So you serve a man?

Me: Nope God.

Sammy: What?! How’s that?

Me: Jesus is God.

Sammy: Jesus is God?!

Me: Jesus is God.

Sammy: So you’re sayin’ Jesus is 100% God and 100% man.

Me: Righto.

Sammy: That’s impossible, that’s 200%.

Me: No it’s not, He is God the Son.

Sammy: God has a Son or God is the Son?

Me: Yes.

Sammy:What?! Ok, let’s back up. We’re talkin’ about God, right?

Me: Right.

Sammy: There’s only one God.

Me: Now you’re gettin’ it.

Sammy: And to be a Christian you gotta be saved.

Me: Well, of course.

Sammy: To be saved someone has to pay the penalty for your sin.

Me: Correcto.

Sammy: God died to pay the penalty for your sins.

Me: Nope, Jesus. Jesus paid the penalty for our sins.

Sammy: Are you tryin’ to say you serve Jesus?

Me: Wholeheartedly.

Sammy: I thought you serve God.

Me: I do.

Sammy: Well, then how can you serve Jesus and God?

Me: Same Guy.

Sammy: It’s the Same guy?

Me: The same.  Guy.

Sammy: That’s not possible.

Me: Trinity.

Sammy: Trinity?

Me: Trinity. It’s the Father and the Son.

Sammy: That’s only two, Trinity means three. I don’t understand, that’s no comfort to me.


Sammy: Whuddya mean Holy Spirit?

Me: He’s the Comforter.

Sammy: So what. Why’re you shouting that out? We’re talkin’ about God.

Me: Yes we are.

Sammy: So keep the Holy Spirit out of this.

Me: Impossible.

Sammy: Impossible how? Oh, wait. Let me guess–He’s God too.

Me: Exactly! I was afraid I’d lost you.

Sammy: Lost me? Forget it. Let’s get back to God.

Me: Easy, never left Him.

Sammy: So let’s pretend I understand this Jesus thing.

Me: Okay.

Sammy: I serve God, who is the Father.

Me: Great.

Sammy: I serve Jesus, too, who is the Son.

Me: It goes without saying.

Sammy: When I pray, I pray to………Who?

Me: God.

Sammy: The Father or the Son.

Me: Yes.

Sammy: You’re killing me here. I’m going to have to see another counselor after this.


Sammy: Again with the Holy Spirit. I thought we were leaving Him outta this.

Me: I did, but you brought him up.

Sammy: I did no such thing.

Me: Sure you did. You called Him by Name, Another Counselor.

Sammy: This is nuts. Ok, sense we’re back here, what’s the deal with the Holy Spirit?

Me: The Bible calls Him the Comforter or Another Counselor. He came on the scene after Jesus died.

Sammy: Why did He wait till God died to come here?

Me: Jesus

Sammy: Huh?

Me: Jesus died, you said God died. It was Jesus.

Sammy: What, are you kidding me? I thought Jesus was God.

Me: He is, but God didn’t die. Jesus did.

Sammy: Are you serious? Well, what happened to all that “same guy” business?

Me: Trinity.

Do you find it hard to leave the Christian jargon behind when talking about Christ? Have you ever be confused by the special Christian vocabulary?

19 thoughts on “God’s on First

Add yours

  1. I, too, love the Abbott and Costello sketch! It’s interesting, as you’ve adapted it to explaining the Trinity, how confusing it must be to new believers or to those we’re trying to reach for Jesus, to explain how the Trinity works.


  2. Great idea to put those together. Love “Who’s on first?”……

    Fun stuff….. And you mentioned wanting to do an audio clip? Do it and post it to youtube. Seriously…..


    1. Maybe if I can get a good partner. I tried recording it doing goth parts and didn’t have the patients for the editing. I have the other adaptation on Sound Cloud, it’s audio only.


  3. When you brought up Folks With Sin, I worried that this wasn’t going to measure up- but you’ve done it again! Spectacular job taking a confounding topic like the Trinity and telling it through the voice of Abbot and Costello. I think it’s great.


  4. You ever read something and think, “Man, I wish I had thought of that first!” Well–this was mine.

    Brilliant–thanks for writing it.


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