CarpenterJoseph02I received the following question:

Was Jesus’ step-father a carpenter?  According to the following lexicon:
http://www.studylight.org/lex/grk/view.cgi?number=5045
he may have just been a general tradesmen.

In Israel, where wood was scarce, a “carpenter” seems most unlikely. They did not build things out of wood generally. Houses and furniture were usually built out of other materials. “Carpenter” was the translation made in a country where wood is very common, and is the common building material. In England, a “builder” IS a “carpenter.” In Israel, not so. It seems highly unlikely that Joseph or the Lord were carpenters.

It does seem somehow appropriate that a carpenter would be hung on a piece of wood to die, but unfortunately, this connection is probably totally manufactured. The Lord likely worked more with the hammer and chisel than the hammer and nails.

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