Truth, Understanding, Insight

Jesus (Yeshua):The Carpenter

11th January 2009, hej


5) The nail in illustrations of the pattern of redemption

In Paul's words we can see a connection between the illustration of the seed of the woman nailing evil and the work of Yeshua, as he explains Yeshua's work as that of

Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross; (Colossians 2:14 KJV)

As the nailing to the timber at the crucifixion was a physical event witnessed by many people, the passage above could be merely a neat analogy. When we know that Yeshua worked as a carpenter, Paul's words have an added layer of meaning. The literal and figurative detail dovetail together. Paul's language is figurative, as nothing physically was nailed to the timber at the crucifixion except a body and an identification sign. Whereas the account of Jael is that of a real event, where the enemy of Yahweh is 'nailed'. They are both consistent illustrations, that explain the intangible idea of redemption.

It is remarkable that Isaiah records Yahweh speaking of His work with Yeshua, as that of a carpenter fastening a nail in a sure place. The analogy stands on its own, but becomes powerful when we conclude that Yahweh had it in his mind, over a thousand years before his birth, that Yeshua would be a carpenter. He could have been a: merchant, physician, scribe, fisherman, baker, smith, stonemason, tent maker, tax collector, farmer, or shepherd. But of the many possible occupations, he was a carpenter.

We are told Yeshua was familiar with the book of Isaiah. As a teenager learning the trade of carpentry, he, surely, would have pondered on the priest who was like a nail driven into a sure place. And as he used a hammer with force to remove a nail and saw it lying cut-off on the ground, he must have realised what was meant by the priest being cut off. As every carpenter knows, it is the 'heel' of the nail that is damaged when it is forcibly removed. The head need not be damaged.

There is veracity and deep consistency even in what seems irrelevant detail. And at that we stand in awe.