Jesus Did What? | Jim Huskins – Blue Ridge Christian News

Jesus Did What?

By Jim Huskins

McDowell CountyJim Huskins McDowell County, NC


Ask any English speaker what Jesus did for a living, and you will be told that He was a carpenter. Our savior’s occupation is a Bible “fact.” He is called a carpenter in Mark 6:3 and Matthew 13:55. Countless Bible teachers have underscored the point. The only problem with this universal conviction is that it’s wrong. Jesus was not a carpenter, and this fact is embedded in the text.


The Greek word used in these passages can mean “carpenter,” but it seldom referred to workers of wood. It is better translated “builder” or “craftsman.” In First Century Israel, the word would have referred to workers of stone, iron, or copper. The word is “tekton.” It is used in English to refer to the massive stone structures which make up the earth’s crust. The subdivisions of that crust are called tectonic plates. Tekton never refers to wood.


Every Hebrew boy was taught a trade. This was the case even for those who would become scholars or leaders. Jakob’s sons were shepherds. So was King David. Saul of Tarsus made tents. Jesus’ stepfather built houses, but he was not a carpenter. Joseph and his sons were masons.


When Western Bible scholars encountered the word “builder,” they assumed it meant “carpenter.” This assumption is understandable in a culture where most houses are built of wood. Wood was never plentiful in Israel. Ordinary people could not afford such an exotic material. Homes in Canaan may have included a few poles to support a roof, but those houses were built of stone.


KJV translators would have known this if they had paid attention to the early books of Scripture. Leviticus 14:33-53 gives instructions for dealing with mold that appears inside a house. Those procedures include removing affected stones and the plaster which covered them. In persistent infections, all the stones of that house were to be disposed outside the camp.


The translation of “tekton” as “carpenter” is one of many cases where ignorance of the first three-fourths of the Bible, and the culture which produced it, has caused people to “make up stuff” to support their prejudices. Everyone who desires to follow God on His terms should be aware that the word “translation” is always a lie. No two languages offer direct correspondence. Everything which we call “translation” is, in reality, an “interpretation.” “Bible translations” are always slanted to support the convictions of the translator. The only way to know what the Bible says is to become familiar with the language and culture which produced it.


The fact that Jesus was a mason is important. A mason in Israel worked among ordinary people. The Gospels tell us that common people flocked to Him and responded to His message. They recognized Him as one of them. He spoke their language and saw the world through their eyes.


Preachers and Bible teachers should be aware of Jesus’ profession so they can avoid looking silly. The yoke He offers is easy because His requirements are within our capabilities. It is not easy because Jesus was a master woodworker. He is more than able to craft the beams and timbers of our lives, but not because he spent years building wooden houses. The Son of God can build anything He wants, but in order for the incarnation to have value, He had to assume most of our limitations. 


The fact that so many Western Christians think Jesus was a carpenter should be a wakeup call for every believer. Church creeds and doctrines contain many falsehoods. Only through familiarity with the entire Bible can one determine if God abandoned Israel, if Paul did away with the Sinai covenant, if Jesus was serious when He said that the Law would be in undiminished effect for as long as heaven and earth remain, if humans are incapable of doing good, and if God expects followers of His Son to obey His instructions for living. Where does the Bible say that “grace” makes righteousness obsolete?


Well-intended scholars have attempted to understand the books of Matthew through Revelation without first gaining intimate knowledge of the part of God’s Word which Paul says is “Breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” Most Christians are not aware that one-fourth of what we have been taught to call “new testament” is quoted from Genesis through Malachi?


Only through ignorance of God’s Word can one conclude that Jesus spent most of His life building with wood That same ignorance has produced grievous error. One need not be an expert in prophecy to recognize that this world is rushing toward its conclusion When Jesus returns, He will judge every person based on what we have done Our status in eternity will reflect the degree to which we have learned and acted upon God’s truth. Part of that truth is knowing that Jesus spent his life working with stone. He knows how to lay a firm foundation. With His help, we can build lives that will stand up to every flood and storm.


We should teach every child a marketable trade. If each politician, scientist, lawyer, business leader, and college professor knew how to earn a living with his or her hands, then our leaders might make better decisions. I suspect that a restored commonality of common sense would improve our common experience. If those who are so often in the news had been taught self reliance, would they not be terrified of dependence on any government? If they could fend for themselves in God’s world, would they not recognize the foolishness of celebrating every form of Godlessness?


I am thrilled to finally understand that the Solid Rock and the True Cornerstone was a stone mason. My recognition of His profession serves to remind me that His truth is the only thing in this world which will never be shaken.


Obedient Heart Fellowship meets each Sabbath (Seventh Day) at 3023 US 221 N. Marion, NC. 10:00 A.M. 828-460-7913


Jim & Beverly Huskins are members of Obedient Heart Fellowship in McDowell County. Beginning July 2, 2022 Obedient Heart Fellowship will meet at 10:00 Each Sabbath (Seventh Day) at 3023 US 221 N. Marion, NC. 10:00 A.M. Call 828-460-7913 for info.

You can read more good Christian news from Jim HERE.


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