If Jesus was a carpenter...
#1
...can we deduce from his divinity anything about his carpentry? Was he as good a carpenter as it's possible to be, or was he a mundane carpenter?
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#2
From chapter 83 of Justin Martyr's Dialogue with Trypho:

(trans. Philip Schaff)
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf01

Quote:And when Jesus came to the Jordan, He was considered to be the son of Joseph the carpenter; and He appeared without comeliness, as the Scriptures declared; and He was deemed a carpenter (for He was in the habit of working as a carpenter when among men, making ploughs and yokes; by which He taught the symbols of righteousness and an active life); but then the Holy Ghost, and for man's sake, as I formerly stated, lighted on Him in the form of a dove, and there came at the same instant from the heavens a voice, which was uttered also by David when he spoke, personating Christ, what the Father would say to Him: Thou art My Son: this day have I begotten Thee;'

St. Justin gives the impression of a very practical sort of carpenter, less a fine cabinetmaker than the sort of craftsman useful to those who till the soil. I've been told by a Byzantinologist that yoke and harnesses were very ineffective during the period that he studies (somewhat later, the 7th century), which negatively impacted agricultural production for many centuries. The harder a horse worked, the more it constrained its breathing by pushing on its windpipe, so oxen were used instead. Oxen are slower, have less power, and have less stamina.

If Christ made yokes, he probably spent a fair deal of time around the bovine sort, I would say, and perhaps even custom-fitted the yokes to the oxen, as is the case with some designs of  yoke. A variety of yokes were used throughout history, and across various lands, and I can find very little relating to yoke design in the ancient eastern Mediterranean generally or Palestine specifically.
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#3
There is, as you are aware, Biblical support for Christ's association with yokes.

Matthew 11:28-30

Come to me, all you that labour, and are burdened, and I will refresh you. Take up my yoke upon you, and learn of me, because I am meek, and humble of heart: and you shall find rest to your souls. For my yoke is sweet and my burden light.
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#4
(04-01-2015, 07:42 PM)Cyriacus Wrote: From chapter 83 of Justin Martyr's Dialogue with Trypho:

(trans. Philip Schaff)
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf01

Quote:And when Jesus came to the Jordan, He was considered to be the son of Joseph the carpenter; and He appeared without comeliness, as the Scriptures declared; and He was deemed a carpenter (for He was in the habit of working as a carpenter when among men, making ploughs and yokes; by which He taught the symbols of righteousness and an active life); but then the Holy Ghost, and for man's sake, as I formerly stated, lighted on Him in the form of a dove, and there came at the same instant from the heavens a voice, which was uttered also by David when he spoke, personating Christ, what the Father would say to Him: Thou art My Son: this day have I begotten Thee;'

St. Justin gives the impression of a very practical sort of carpenter, less a fine cabinetmaker than the sort of craftsman useful to those who till the soil. I've been told by a Byzantinologist that yoke and harnesses were very ineffective during the period that he studies (somewhat later, the 7th century), which negatively impacted agricultural production for many centuries. The harder a horse worked, the more it constrained its breathing by pushing on its windpipe, so oxen were used instead. Oxen are slower, have less power, and have less stamina.

If Christ made yokes, he probably spent a fair deal of time around the bovine sort, I would say, and perhaps even custom-fitted the yokes to the oxen, as is the case with some designs of  yoke. A variety of yokes were used throughout history, and across various lands, and I can find very little relating to yoke design in the ancient eastern Mediterranean generally or Palestine specifically.

This is interesting, but not quite what I was getting at. What I mean is, whatever Jesus made, was he maximally skilled at making it? Given materials X, time Y, and objective Z, would he have done the best job it's possible for a man to do, or would his work have been indistinguishable from that of a normal carpenter? Further, if he was capable of this, would he have declined to do it and instead pretended to be a normal carpenter, given how the Gospel is clear that at the start he avoided standing out?

I'm just musing. The question occurred to me earlier and I thought I'd bounce it off you guys.

(04-01-2015, 08:07 PM)Cyriacus Wrote: There is, as you are aware, Biblical support for Christ's association with yokes.

Matthew 11:28-30

Come to me, all you that labour, and are burdened, and I will refresh you. Take up my yoke upon you, and learn of me, because I am meek, and humble of heart: and you shall find rest to your souls. For my yoke is sweet and my burden light.

That would be a very interesting connection, if he was known for making agricultural yokes!
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#5
of course. he could will it and it would be done. just like he could have rode a t-rex into jerusalem and made everyone see it as an ass.
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#6
Jesus was a carpenter. Just as a carpenter works with wood and builds things so Jesus built the Church.
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#7
(04-01-2015, 07:08 PM)Dirigible Wrote: ...can we deduce from his divinity anything about his carpentry? Was he as good a carpenter as it's possible to be, or was he a mundane carpenter?

I can't imagine that his carpentry wouldn't be anything but exceptional, and I don't think doing beautiful work would necessarily jeopardize his goal of leading a hidden life in Nazareth. Interestingly I have a friend who's grandfather was a very gifted carpenter. However I only know this because I've been informed by the family about his reputation and how after his death there was a bidding war between several collectors for pieces of furniture he had built. Keep in mind before being informed of this I had seen and even eaten many times  at a table he built that the family kept. It was obviously a nice table, but the truth is it never struck me as the work of a master carpenter because unless you're a master yourself you won't be able to see it.

Similarly I'm sure in his day Jesus constructed many perfect things in his shop, but because the things were merely ordinary everyday objects for his time and place they probably went largely unnoticed. Even if he did from time to time build something a bit more exotic for someone with Hellenistic tastes outside the immediate community  it's likely his neighbors would simply brush it off as mere eccentricity. Rather then being blown away by his work they probably  would just think "Oh look Mary's son is building something odd again." And with a bemused eye roll they'd be on their way.
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#8
Certainly all of His works would be all relics that the faithful would gain many graces from.  The pagans and Jews would no doubt have failed to appreciate them, however. 

While there is a certain artistic aesthetic possible in carpentry, He came not as an artist, so I'm not sure the metric would be very distinguishable to as many as if it was the latter.  I'm sure the quality would have been exceptional and proficient as work of His human hands though clearly not as magnificent as if created by His divine power. 
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#9
If I might on the subject, the word they translate as carpenter was the word used to describe a tradesman that worked with durable things, this could include wood, but also stone and maybe the metals they had at the time, given that the area was not full of tones of trees, Jesus and foster father St Joesph would have likely worked less with wood and more along the lines of makers in many materials then strictly wood, maybe even more along the lines of a builder then an actual carpenter in the modern sense, this is what was said in a video that one was to watch and learn about St Joe, when a family would make a novina to him as we would take turns doing with the 2 statues we had, and families would take turns doing, not much is said about St Joe, but what is said speaks volumes to who he was, as a juste man, which there are few of and speaks of extraordnary character of him, he was a skilled laborer, and Jesus would have done this as well for a span of time, maybe even working on the temple in the herodian expantian at the time.  though this is conjecture, but they had a living to make, and things that must have been done.
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#10
(04-20-2015, 11:34 PM)churchesoffortwayne Wrote: If I might on the subject, the word they translate as carpenter was the word used to describe a tradesman that worked with durable things, this could include wood, but also stone and maybe the metals they had at the time, given that the area was not full of tones of trees, Jesus and foster father St Joesph would have likely worked less with wood and more along the lines of makers in many materials then strictly wood, maybe even more along the lines of a builder then an actual carpenter in the modern sense, this is what was said in a video that one was to watch and learn about St Joe, when a family would make a novina to him as we would take turns doing with the 2 statues we had, and families would take turns doing, not much is said about St Joe, but what is said speaks volumes to who he was, as a juste man, which there are few of and speaks of extraordnary character of him, he was a skilled laborer, and Jesus would have done this as well for a span of time, maybe even working on the temple in the herodian expantian at the time.  though this is conjecture, but they had a living to make, and things that must have been done.

That's interesting, I've never heard that before. Have you a source for the word not strictly meaning "carpenter"?
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