Those from Nazareth knew our Lord Jesus Christ simply as the 'carpenter', or using the greek word in our New Testament, a Tekton. Unlike our understanding of a carpenter today, the Tekton in our Lord's time was a craftsman or builder, meaning he would have likely worked with both wood and stone products in the building of tools and structures. This was the earthly occupation of our Saviour for much of his human life, and yet, He had come to build something much greater so evidenced at Calvary, the day He made atonement for our sin.
It was common for a tekton to use wood as a support to the building project. For example, wood would have been used as a structural support for constructing new buildings, in which it would bear the weight of the walls and roof. This would have been an element a tekton would have learned to use early in his career. When we consider this, what a parallel is seen when the heavenly Tekton, our Lord Jesus Christ, bear the wood on His back as He was led from Jerusalem to Calvary. As the support for the wooden cross, we see a beautiful picture of the true Tekton that bear away our sins and our sorrows in His own body on the tree.
The iron nails were used by the tekton to bring two foreign elements together, such as two pieces of wood, in the construction of a great work or masterpiece. However, at Calvary, we see the nails being used to pierce the body of Christ to the wooden cross, the very expression of man's shame for 'cursed is everyone that hangs on a tree'. The beauty of such suffering is that as Christ became the sin bearer, attaching Himself to the suffering we deserved, He was actually bringing two foreign elements together; that being a Holy God and sinful man. He was the spiritual nail that reconciled two such opposing sides together. The scriptures tell us that the Just died, for the unjust, that He might bring us to God.
The tekton often worked with rocks and stones to carve out buildings and sepulchres. It is no accident that upon our Saviour's death, the rocks were raised (rent). It is no accident that our Saviour was placed in a rock sepluchre, where many tektons likely worked under Joesph's direction to construct a new tomb for his family. From this newly constructed rock tomb, our Lord Jesus, as the great Tekton, was raised to life again for ever more, which is the final act of our justification.
Many from Nazareth only knew Jesus as an earthly tekton; a physical builder. How much greater is our appreciation of Him, when we consider Jesus as our heavenly Tekton, the spiritual builder. At Calvary, we see Him as the Tekton at work. In the wood, we see Him as the bearer of sin. In the nails, we see Him as the great Mediator bringing us to God, and in the rock, we see Him as the foundation of our faith in the great work of His Death and glorious Resurrection. May these beautiful thoughts of Him help us this week in our personal meditation and worship of Him.