And God Chose: Joseph the Carpenter!

1 02 2017

Christmas 2016 seemed like a joseph-the-carpenterreminder from every side of the life of Joseph, the Carpenter.  The sermons that I heard, the songs we sang all seemed to highlight this Carpenter from Nazareth who we know very little about, but seems to in reality, have a vital part to play in the life and ministry of Jesus!

It was beckoning me to look and study a person, who might be relegated to a back seat in the story, but looms large in the economy of God!  I am almost tempted to feel, that this could be a project for a book to walk in Joseph’s shoes and see his life and the impact that he had on Jesus, and to realize, that even though we might be “anonymous”, that in God’s eyes, our faithfulness is a vital ingredient in God’s Kingdom, to accomplish the task of His work and ministry!

So let’s go meet Joseph the Carpenter!

Since we do not know him too well, let’s sit around and fire some questions at him and try and get some ideas as to who he is.

  •  Joseph you grew up in the town of Nazareth and it is reported that there was a Roman garrison (an army base) in town. What was it like to have the enemy living in your town?  What kind of feelings and emotions and questions did you and your neighbors and relatives have towards them?
  • Since you are known as Joseph the Carpenter, we have to presume that this is a trade you learned as a child/ young man from your father, and you inherited or grew into the family business. Since it was a fairly large town, did you have a prosperous business?  You must have been quite a good carpenter to be known as “the carpenter”!
  • Can you tell us your thoughts about you and Mary? She must have been a very pretty girl?  We don’t know too much about either one of your parents.  Were they all good friends?  Did they arrange your marriage?
  • You must have loved Mary a lot, for you to decide to break the wedding plans, quietly and not openly disgrace her. Did you somehow have the feeling, that maybe what she was saying to you about her conception was true?
  • Were you a religious person, Joseph? Why would God have chosen you to be the earthly father of Jesus?  Sounds like a big responsibility?  God must have been working a lot in your life from your young days, and you were obedient to His voice.
  • When Jesus was a kid in your home, and as he grew to be a teen and then as a young adult, you were his role model. What were some things you did with him?  We know that you when on your trips up to Jerusalem with Him as we see in Luke 2: 41-52.  We also see that you taught him the trade of being a carpenter.  He must have been very precise and meticulous in his work in the carpentry shop!
  • Would you mind telling us a little bit about your trip to Bethlehem, when Mary was pregnant and you were ordered to travel for the Census.
  1. Did you carry many supplies when you were traveling? I am sure that you wanted to provide for Mary as much as possible for her comfort?
  2. What were your thoughts when you had to have the baby in a manger, because there was no other room available? Did you have some troubling thoughts as to God’s Provisions, when you could not even give the basic necessities for Jesus to be born?
  3. What were your feelings when the Shepherds came looking for Jesus, and the Story that they were relating?
  4. Looks like you found a place to live in Bethlehem, and you must have supported your young family with some odd jobs when the “wise men/magi” came to see Jesus. This must have given you some assurance that this was truly from God.
  5. I see that, God seems to speak to you in dreams. You must have grown up to learn things this way as a young person, that you were confident in them.
  6. Eight days after Jesus was born, you and Mary, took Jesus to the Temple in Jerusalem, to dedicate him to God. There you met Anna and then Simeon, two godly people who prophesied over Jesus and Mary.  Could you fill in some details on this trip?
  • So after the Wise Men came and left, you had a dream and then you had to get up and become Refugees in Egypt, so that you could protect Jesus from the hand of the cruel King Herod. What kept you assured that God was still working in your life?  Are there some specific verses of scripture that gave you assurance of your safety and of God’s care and protection over you?
  • Another story that we see you in is when you went to Jerusalem with Mary and Jesus when Jesus was twelve years old.
  1. You must have been very worried when you found out He was missing.
  2. Yes, he was the eldest in your family (even though he was not your own)! You had a special responsibility to guard and protect him.
  3. What were some of your thoughts, when and till you found Him?
  4. How did Jesus’ comments to you and Mary about being about His Father’s business affect you?
  5. Did your conversation with Jesus in the carpentry shop and around the house take on a different meaning from that time on?
  • To end our conversation with you, I have a fun question to ask you. Listening to Jesus’ teachings and conversations, it feels like you taught him to love and enjoy life. He had a good sense of humor, and I have a sneaky suspicion, that He learned it from you?  Any special stories that you have from his young days that stand out in your  mind?

God chose Joseph because he saw that Joseph could be trusted to be the earthly father of Jesus!  God has chosen you to be “who you are” and to live to your full potential, right where you are!  YOU ARE CHOSEN BY GOD for “such a time as this”!

 

 


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