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Brian Clatworthy, Newton Abbot, Devon, England [SEE PROFILE BELOW]

Precious Seed

‘Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary?’ Mark 6. 3

A carpenter in the ancient world was a highly skilled worker in wood who provided a variety of services to local communities. This included, among other things, making domestic furniture and household utensils as well as agricultural equipment to meet the needs of the farming community, 2 Sam. 24. 22. The carpenter’s tool box consisted of an array of implements such as planes, dividers or compasses, Isa. 44. 13, as well as wooden mallets, Judg. 5. 25, chisels, awls, and axes to carve wood, and hammers and nails to secure items in place, Jer. 10. 4. Parts of the tabernacle were made from acacia wood by the gifted craftsman Bezaleel and his team of co-workers that would have included carpenters, Exod. 31. 1-11. Phoenicia was famous during David’s reign for ship-building and Hiram king of Tyre sent carpenters and masons to build David a house out of cedar wood, 2 Sam. 5. When the temple was built, carpenters would have been responsible for a large amount of the work such as the making of the two cherubims out of olive wood each measuring ten cubits high, 1 Kgs. 6. 23. Later, carpenters were employed to repair the same temple during the reign of Joash, 2 Chr. 24. 12. Sadly, carpenters also made idols for worship, Isa. 44. 13-17. In New Testament times the trade of a carpenter was regarded as being equivalent to that of a common labourer, hence, part of the lower classes. So it is more than likely that the congregation in the synagogue at Nazareth was making a highly disparaging comment when they identified the Lord as ‘the carpenter, the son of Mary’, Mark 6. 3. In Matthew’s account, however, our Lord is identified as ‘the carpenter’s son’, Matt. 13. 55, which assumes that Joseph had passed on his skills to our Lord. This family was undoubtedly well known in the locality for its wood-working business, but the reality of who our Lord really was seems to have missed them entirely! In William Holman Hunt’s famous picture entitled The Shadow of the Cross, our Lord is depicted as working as a carpenter with his arms outstretched after sawing wood, and the shadow of His outstretched arms falls on a wooden spar on which tools are hung, creating a ‘shadow of death’ depicting crucifixion. How ironic, then, to think that the very raw material that He had often shaped with His hands as a carpenter would one day be shaped into a wooden cross used for His public crucifixion. But, as Peter reminds us so powerfully, He was ‘delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God’, Acts 2. 23. May we, like Paul, only glory in that cross, ‘the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ’, Gal. 6. 14.

AUTHOR PROFILE: He is an elder and active member of a pioneer assembly work in Newton Abbott. For many years he has been welcomed as a ministering brother in the south of England and has written a number of articles for the magazine. He is married and has two children.

There are 23 articles in
ISSUE (2020, Volume 75 Issue 1)

1 Thessalonians Chapter 2

A Word for Today - Graphe

An Assembly of the Lord’s people will be a people among whom - The Gospel is Sounded Out - Part 6

An overview of Nehemiah


Chairman’s Notes

Characters in the Early Years of the Lord - Anna

Church Doctrine and Practice (Revised Edition)

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Editorial - ‘Be thankful unto him, and bless his name’, Ps. 100. 4.

TheGospel of Mark - Part 9

Handley Moule - His life and legacy

Hope – Anchor of the soul

Old Testament Women who appear in the New Testament - Lot's Wife

Question Time - Is any aspect of the Mosaic law binding on Christians? 

The - Part 1Sacrifice of The Son

The Epistle to the Colossians - Part 8

The Messianic Psalms - Psalm 72

The only One who always delivers and doesn’t disappoint

The Twelve Tribes of Israel - Gad

What does the Bible tell us about the future? - Part 6 - ‘The Church and the Millennium’

What is God’s plan for my life?

‘We are leaving’

This article is not part of a series

There are 70 articles by this author

The Order of Melchisedec

The Epistle to Philemon

Paul’s View of the Law

Introducing the Feasts

The Passover

The Feasts of Unleavended Bread and Firstfruits

Feasts of Weeks and Trumpets

Day of Atonement

Feasts of Tabernacles

Paul’s view of the Person of Christ

The Letters to the Seven Churches of Asia Minor

Paul’s view of the Person of Christ

The Letters of the Seven Churches of Asia Minor

The Church at Pergamos

The Kingdom of God in the preaching of the Lord Jesus

John Calvin - A man predestined for greatness?

A Word for Today: Word (Gk. Logos)

A Word for Today: Loving Kindness (Heb. Hesed)

A Word for Today: Coming (Gk. Parousia)

A Word for Today: Be Just, Righteous (Heb. Sedek)

A Word for Today: Hope (Gk. Elpis)

A Word for Today: Hear, Obedience (Heb. Shema)

A Word for Today: Price of Release, Ransom (Gk. Lutron)

The Linguistic Heritage of the King James Bible

A Word for Today: Step, Walk (Heb. Hálak)

A Word for Today: Covenant (Gk. Diatheke)

A Word for Today: Firstfruits (Heb. Bikkûr)

Martin Luther - Doctor of Theology - Part 1

A Word for Today: Fellowship (Gk. Koinonia)

Martin Luther - Doctor of Theology - Full Article

MARTIN LUTHER – Doctor of Theology (2)

A Word for Today: Kinsman Redeemer (Heb. Go’el)

A Word for Today: Reconciliation (Gk. Katallage)

A Word for Today: Shield, Protection (Heb. Magen)

Samuel Prideaux Tregelles - Biblical Scholar

A Word for Today: Good (Gk. Kalos)

A Word for Today: Vine, Grapevine (Heb. Gephen)

A Word for Today: Play-acting, Pretence, Hypocrisy (Gk. Hypokrisis)

A Word for Today: Blood, Bloodshed, Bloodguilt, Murder (Heb. Dam)

A Word for Today: Advocate, Pleader, Intercessor (Gk. Para-kletos)

Edward Dennett

A Word for Today: Wisdom, Skill, Aptitude (Heb. Hokmah)

A Word for Today - Katharos

A Word for Today - Torah

A Word for Today - Zoe

Charles Gahan

A Word for Today - S(h)emesh (Sun)

A Word for Today - καινός

A Word for Today - ‘Or

A Word for Today - Grace

Deity and Personality of the Holy Spirit-The

A WORD FOR TODAY. ‘Es (Tree, wood)

Deity and Personality of the Holy Spirit-The Part 2

A Word for Today - Panim

A Word For Today - Pistis

The Argument for Galatians - Part 1

A Word for Today - Mashah

TheArgument of Galatians

A Word for Today: Missing the mark, Guilt, Sin (Gk. Hamartia)

Word For Today: Melek

Word For Today: Skandalon

Word for Today - Shebet

A Word for Today

The Son of God His Eternality

Word for Today - Yeshu’ah

Word for Today - Agape

Word for Today - ‘Ol (Yoke)

A Word for Today - Kurios

A Word for Today - Graphe

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