The Carpenter Shop
If anything needed to be built or fixed the people of Nazareth knew to go to Joseph’s carpenter shop. As Jesus grew He spent time alongside His earthly father learning Joseph’s trade. Carpentry was a tough job in biblical times demanding strength and enduring sore muscles. Crude tools: an axe, chisel, plane, compass and handsaw were used with great skill. Jesus, the craftsman, built furniture and constructed or repaired yokes and plows.

Jesus’ building skills played into the words of a verse He would speak years later: “Come to me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me for I am gentle and humble in heart and you will find rest for your souls; for my yoke is easy and my burden light,” Matthew 11:28-30. The yoke Jesus spoke of was a well-fitted wooden collar that rested on the shoulders of two oxen linking them together and making their burden easier. We are connected to Jesus walking with Him in submission and commitment. When we are linked with Jesus He takes our full share of burdens and we find rest, peace and a meaningful relationship with Him.

Jesus was patient as He took the time to smooth out the rough edges of each piece of wood. But He didn’t walk to the lumber yard to buy wood; He cut down the trees needed and cured them. Jesus is the Master Builder and He took the time to do the job right. As Jesus used a plane to smooth out a piece of wood a soft smile came across His face thinking back to Noah and his three sons. The tools, the time, instructions and dimensions He gave Noah to build the ark. He remembered His precise measurements and intricate woodworking for the building of the Temple David prepared but Solomon built.

After Joseph’s death Jesus, being the eldest son, continued His loyalty to His inherited occupation thus supporting His mother and siblings. Jesus spent eighteen years as a carpenter. He was patient for thirty years continuing His trade waiting for the right time to begin His ministry.

At the end of another productive day Jesus was sweeping the saw dust in the workshop. He picked up a spike and rolled it between His fingers knowing the cross lie before Him. He put the hammer away and thought of the Roman soldier who would raise his arm to strike the nail into Jesus’ hand nailing Him to the cross. He knew the same people who came into the carpenter’s shop as customers and those who watched Him grow up would one day ask, “Isn’t this the carpenter; Mary’s Son?” He knew the rebellion He would one day face; the people who would turn their backs on Him refusing to believe in His wisdom and the miracles He performed.

The harassment, ridicule and rejection began to reverberate through His soul. He reflected on the torture, beatings and whippings and knew it would all be worth it to watch us lift our hearts and minds to Him accepting His gift of salvation. He knew one day we would understand who He is and why He came to earth. Those years in the carpenter shop prepared Him for His three year ministry.  He shared His patience through the love He showed those who were broken with sin, and sickness. Jesus always left each person physically and spiritually stronger than they were before. Only Jesus can put us back together again.
by Sue Schmidt

One Response to “The Carpenter Shop”

  1. ig says:

    Wonderful post but I was wondering if you could write a litte more
    on this subject? I’d be very thankful if you could elaborate a little bit further.


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