The story of Christ's death will be played out in local productions in churches across the country as Christians observe Good Friday. And in some observances, the showing of the passion of Christ will be darker and bloodier than others.
At one of Mars Hill Church's six campuses in Washington state, attendants will sit in on a graphic video portraying the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. Other campuses will have a late night showing of Mel Gibson's "The Passion of The Christ" film.
The video that will be shown at Mars Hill's Ballard campus, which was set up to serve urban Seattle, comes with an MH-17 warning, where viewers under the age of 17 are required to get adult consent to watch the clip.
"The heart of what we believe as Christians is that Jesus Christ, our great God, died. He was crucified. He was murdered in our place for our sins," said Mars Hill founder Mark Driscoll on the church Web site, "and three days later he rose in newness of life, conquering our enemies of Satan's sin and death and providing salvation, forgiveness of sin and new life."
He described the Good Friday service at the Ballard campus as "particularly intense," explaining that they will "crucify someone for 30 minutes."
According to Mars Hill Church, Good Friday services have always been "powerful" and "dark" in remembering the death of Jesus Christ.
Dawn Sigler–Miller, who is directing her own Easter drama titled "One Choice" at Cambria Baptist Church in Hillsdale, Mich., believes such an intense and bloody depiction may be just what some people need to be reached.
"Every person in our world is different and certainly, how the Lord reaches them is different," she told The Christian Post. "We have a lot of Christians to reach. Some need extreme graphics, and some need a gentle touch."
The intense services at Mars Hill have led many people to repent of sin and give their lives to Jesus, according to the Seattle church.
Sigler-Miller, however, chooses to go with the more "gentle touch" when telling the story of Christ's death.
Her musical production, which she has been directing for the past 11 years, consists of a moderately dressed Jesus during the crucifixion scene and visuals that are appropriate for a two-year-old to sit in the audience, she said.
"I think that any correct biblical portrayal of the Easter story can be a very powerful ministry," she commented. "My pastor says it well: When you do a play or a musical, you're doing a visual of the Bible and if you're accurate with that, the Lord will use that."
The drama "One Choice" opened Thursday evening at Cambria Baptist Church with additional performances scheduled into the weekend.