Tekton: The Messiah's Trade!
- » A worker in wood: joiner; builder
- » A ship's carpenter or builder
- » Any craftsman or workman
- » The art of poetry; maker of songs
- » A planner, contriver, plotter
- » An Author!
- » Original Word: tevktwn
- » Transliterated Word: Tekton
- » Phonetic Spelling: tek'-tone
- » General Construction Worker
- » Stonemason; Metalworker
- » Greek Lexicon 5045
means craftsman, which generally means a builder of many things; an artisan. Traditionally however, the word has been interpreted and translated simply to "carpenter" though it would more likely include (what we think of today as) a master builder. Architects would have been known as an Architekton
. Carpenters and craftsmen were more respected in the past; the Tekton
was, after all, the maker of so many more things than just housing (buildings), cabinetry, furniture, tools, carts and wheels, boats, oars and masts, and so on.
Yeshua spent His early years as an apprentice shop carpenter, which was much the same then, as it is today. As a carpenter myself, I had the time (3 decades) to achieve the Master Carpenter stage: This implies the ability to do at a master level, many facets of works, under the term carpentry. I began as a teen in the 1970's building water-bed frames, speaker boxes, stash boxes, coffee tables, stereo cabinets, and other such smaller wood-works.
At 18, I became a wage slave (a mammon
servant), building homes as well as smaller office buildings, veterinary clinics, and so forth. This meant that I traveled to where the structures were built and applied my trades there, on site, with tools that could be carried there. But I also had a home wood-shop, where I kept my cabinet building tools, jigs, templates, and the large slab tables used to set-up jigs upon. In the past, wood-shops were used (likewise) to make furniture, as well as wagon wheels, instruments, and other wood products that could not be exposed to weather.
Messiah Yeshua: The Early Years!
Yeshua was well-known in His Village of Nazareth
as a carpenter (Matt 13:55; Mark 6:3); the stepson of the local carpentry shop owner, and so they likely never traveled far, but only to do handyman (type) work locally. Tools back then were heavy and expensive; they'd have to be hauled in carts pushed by hand, or if you were well-to-do, pulled by animal-power (horses, donkeys, camels, oxen, and so on). It was not logical to travel far from home to do such work, and such workers were everywhere in those days anyway.
Yeshua spent His entire life in the region of Galilee
, and so the postulated unknown years (silent years, lost years, or missing years of Jesus)
are attempts to link Him with other acts He had nothing to do with. These postulates (most likely sedentary people) never labored with their hands; they do not know that at the end of the labor day, all you want to do is bathe, eat and sleep! Even so, we who are His disciples, are daily driven to be like Him in every way possible (Matt 10:24-26): the cost of discipleship indeed.
An apprenticeship typically took a decade (back then, between the ages of 16-26 or so), and for Yeshua, He was also learning theology, as well as being a typical teenager, student, and son of a sizable family. Since travel back then was dangerous for anyone, only when absolutely necessary, did women and children travel about: Even a 19 year old boy would be vulnerable. It was always safer to travel in groups, which was common then, and partly why He collected a dozen men to travel with, when He began His earthly ministry. And the region was rough terrain, slow going, and humans must stay near water sources.
Son of Reparation!
Remember also that there was no treated lumber back then, and so dry rot and deterioration was a common threat to exposed lumber, and thus, is was necessary to regularly replace damaged wood parts everywhere: roof rafters, shingles, doors, window-frames, floorboards, wheels, carts, hand tools, and so on. Steel works were expensive due to the raw materials, but wood was more abundant and easily reshaped; hence, most everything was made with it (no plastics back then).
Carpenter shops would make all kinds of daily use things, such as bowls and other kitchen utensils, food storage containers, and so on. Also, hand tools such as shovel and hammer handles; anything where steel would be married to wood. Then there is household furnishings, cabinets, picture frames, and I think you can begin to get the idea here. Even after the house was built, there was much more to make. Even the horizontal cross beam of Roman crucifixion was a reusable product created in a carpenter shop.
A Tekton can also be an artisan, who can also produce artwork and crafts; a skill of a Tekton could also include writing and/or drafting; many things were covered under the art of communication. Language was once primarily symbols rather than letters. Imagery, idols, talismans, and other means of communication were more prominent in ancient times than they are in modern times; we today use primarily the written/spoken word as communication, and film rather than canvas.
I imagine Messiah Yeshua knew how to make tents as well, since it's a combination of structure (the frame) and the skin or fabric as cover. Of course, people did not begin to specialize until the modern era, when we got too busy with way too many things, and to the point that we could not fathom knowing everything about any one thing: Many had to become specialists. But it is still possible to master more than one thing.
In addition to His labor talents, Yeshua was also interested in (and learned) in Jewish Theology; this we know because even as a boy He spent time in Jewish temples (Luke 2:42-47). It is presumed, based upon how and what He taught, and how much He knew about the Pharisees
, that He likely studied under the Pharisees, as well as the Essenes, though His ultimate theological core would come from the Indwelling Holy Spirit, following His baptism (Matt 3:13-17).
did not exactly disappear; they simply abandoned the boxes; the brands or labels or titles, which humans must assign to "those others" (in this case, Essene
). Instead, many of them became the unlabeled chosen ones: The Elect of YHVH. We do not merely add religion to our lives; like our Master, we abandon those very lives and labels, and expose the sin of religion: We quickly become disenculturated!
Every individual person of any culture or ethnicity, time or place, who surrenders unconditionally and completely unto the supreme and eternal Lordship of Messiah Yeshua, and dies to this life; dies to their pride-ego-emotion as the core of their heart and mentality; dies to all earthly dreams and desires, and subsequently becomes an utterly new creation (i.e. born again), and steps out of the proverbial boat and onto the water; who sells all/out and follows Him; these individuals are the (infinitesimal and inconspicuous) Elect of YHVH: disciples of Messiah Yeshua. No other titles or labels or brands or sects, but rather, life-eternal lived out today
Why There? Why Then? Why Them?
Messiah Yeshua was/is YHVH in the flesh; the Holy Spirit generally, is simply the Spirit of YHVH, our Adonai Elohim, who manifests in the incorporeal realm, and here on Earth, today in the corporeal, only in and through us disciples, who are in direct contact with the corporeal world. And then there is the Holy Spirit in the world; this is inescapable because the Holy Spirit occupies every square inch of the sum of the entire universe for every second of time, and even outside of (or beyond) time. Who, where, why and when, YHVH decided to take on human form (flesh), was not random; there is a massive and vital message in this paradigm.
My Master, Messiah Yeshua, taught in their
Jewish synagogues (Matt 4:23; 9:35; 10:17-18; 12:9; 13:54-58; 23:33-35); not in His churches, or our synagogues, but always theirs. Why theirs? Because the Creator of all, came onto Earth, in Person, to perform several steps to move us fearful primal carnal territorial primates, from our animal self, and give us the supreme opportunity to utterly transcend our natural man; to die with Him (Gal 2:20), so that we can be reborn as, or transformed into something and someone, so totally different than what we had become before Him, that the word metamorphosis
has to be employed here, for an absence of a better English word.
Spiritual Metamorphosis: The Final Transformation!
Spiritual metamorphosis is the complete and utter transformation of a human being, formally driven by all the (YHVH designed) base or primal or natural drives; procreation at almost any cost; the powerful drives of fear and paranoia, territorialism and personal possession; to generally be driven primarily by primate emotions; for humans, to be shaped and defined by pride-ego-emotion; to be confined and/or limited to the micro-experiences of Enculturation.
The common life of Messiah Yeshua was not random; He was establishing a precedent; setting a living physical example of what our Adonai Elohim had in mind, for those that YHVH would resurrect into everlasting physical bodies, and used throughout the cosmos and spacetime, on planets. Religions market a magic potion of eternal bliss via verbal confession; a non-stop never ending worship service, praising an ego-starved Creator. But that is not truth; that is satans counterfeit productions, which is ego-filling sugar; it is verily a mirror of their own dark Soul.
Christianity is referenced as post-Christendom
for real reasons; it failed by 0400 for good reasons. Now of course, the Godless-religious drones of monetization
must think that large numbers equals success (dollars, followers, likes, adherents, etc.), just like being a money rich mammon
servant, defines all earthbound qualities and qualifications. But being Spiritually blind, they can only filter all things through their carnal membranes of humanistic success, for that is how the blind must navigate their darkness (Luke 6:39-40; Matt 23
To be a future resurrected saint of YHVH is first to be a disciple of Messiah Yeshua; to be set apart from the sum of the World
and the worldliness that defines it and them. Christianity is as worldly as any religion known of on Earth. This is why YHVH had to come to Earth in Person; not just to make propitiation for the sins of the species, but to expose the saints from the rest, like wheat is from weeds or sheep are from goats, knowing that we will remain hopelessly human until the end of this human experiment. It is why He read only these particular and specific words in the synagogue on the Sabbath:
The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted; to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord! (Luke 4:14-19; Isa 61:1-2).
There is no mention or hint of the socially superior; of the wealth-class; of the politicians or their militants; even of the religious. Why? There is no need trying to reach people that have worked (and thus squandered) their earthly life, trying to gain superiority of any kind over others. A humble lifestyle is not what we resign ourselves to, it is what we purposefully seek to live.
But what good is it to explain what you see to a blind man; even after you are done he is still blind and did not really understand (nor really care) what you said anyway: disciples are to use the time they/we have wisely (Matt 10:14; John 6:43-46): Precious few there will be that will seek or find the Lord (Matt 7:13-14).
Only those of us lucky enough to have been humiliated, humbled, broken, and crushed into ashes, are to have even a chance of recovering from the superpower of human volition driven by the mighty power pride-ego-emotion, satans only real weapon against his enemy (my Master, Messiah Yeshua). If you know the Q-source
book of Luke, you know that before the reading of the Isaiah scroll
reiteration, He had just been tempted by satan, which followed the Indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
For whosoever exalts himself shall be abased, and he that humbles himself shall be exalted! Then He said also to him that bade Him: When you make a dinner or a supper, call not your friends, nor your brethren, neither your kinsmen, nor your rich neighbors, lest they also bid you again, and a recompense be made you. But when you make a feast, call the poor, the maimed, the lame, and the blind: And you shall be blessed, for they cannot recompense you: For you shall be recompensed at the Resurrection of the Just! (Luke 14:11-14)
This life is not even about this life! It is a randomized test to see what we will do with the unscripted events that we will find ourselves within. Those who are called-chosen know this; our faith in the future Resurrection is more real (and thus more powerful) to us, than the here and now (Luke 17:5-6): That reality can be seen primarily in lifestyle choices (Matt 7:15-20; Luke 6:43-45), not in organized religion.
The lifestyle that YHVH decided upon, when taking on human form as Messiah Yeshua, was deliberate; the greater lesson was not in the embedded theology, but in the open lifestyle that Messiah Yeshua lived, in the context of His time/culture. The fact that He was crucified by organized religious men devoted to their scripture, and in alliance with the money empowered politicians and their militants, is more vital to understand than anything that my brother Saul ever wrote. The fact that He was crucified as a guiltless man, and, next to a thief; these are vital realities to understand.
Yeshua was very wise for His age; what we would likely label as genius. But Yeshua was a country boy; He was rural, living and engaging the natural world. The Messiah as Tekton, reveals much about His social level and economic stature, all of which was quite intentional by YHVH. We know that He never built Himself a home (Matt 8:20; Luke 9:58): It is also logical to assume (however) that He knew His life here on Earth was to be short, for He was earth-born to be the Lamb
that was slain, not to marry, procreate, work a career and grow old.
But understanding First Century construction methodology, as well as the crafts and trades, helps us to understand our Master in relation to the Messiah Scriptures: Understanding the culture and the politics also helps us to understand Scripture in that context. Indeed, many of the parables Yeshua employed, came from His employment; from His culture; from how humans lived upon Earth, back then.
For example, the hills of Golgotha
was an elevated area that was selected to display those sentenced to die: It was a fear tactic; hence, up on a hill, so it could easily be seen from almost anywhere around it. Not long after the crucifixion of Messiah Yeshua, the place of the skull
became desolate of trees, even unto this day.
The Roman Imperialists would order laborer slaves to clear-cut all trees and foliage, except for the (select) trees to be used for crucifixion
poles. They'd strip trees designated to be the upright (crucifixion) posts of all limbs and branches, leaving only a 12' tall stump (hence, crucified on a tree).
The carpenters milled (roughly) 4x8-inch horizontal reusable cross-beams, with holes already bored through, to accommodate wooden spikes, which would wedge in. A rounded slot was cut into the very top of the tree-stump, allowing the rope to glide through it, as the cross beam (with the person already attached) was raised until the beam reached a dado notched into the tree: The rope was secured to the back of the tree, but left on the cross beam so the dead bodies could later be lowered.
The tree stump methodology would eliminate the need to cut down a tree, mill it, and then dig a deep hole to re-secure it back into the ground. The natural stump is more secure and would last longer. They reused these tree-stumps many times for decades. Before the modern crane, most high-up construction work was done using similar methods.
The intent of impaling the human body was for torture; it likely had nothing to do with the act of crucifixion itself, which was more about public humiliation than anything (Mark 15:16-20). Crucifixion was a public reminder of what happens when you defy the wealth-class, who could afford lands and castles and armies, which is what gave them their king-ships and lord-ships to begin with. In the American Old West, those hanged by the neck at noon would be left dangling until sundown for the same reason; a public warning of criminal consequences.
Dead Man Walking!
The Romans drove thin but wedge-shaped hardwood spikes (stakes) through the palms of the hands, and into pre-bored holes in the cross-beam; not to actually dangle people from them: The ropes held the weight of (both) the human body and the beam. They would be tied and then spiked to the cross-beam, before they were escorted on the walk of shame
(the Via Dolorosa
) to the execution-area stand of trees. The feet were then spiked to the lower part of the tree, to keep them from flailing about, trying to get down. The symbolic act of spiking (nailing; piercing; staking) the hands was to show onlookers the painful price for criminal acts, for which we use our hands to do the evil deeds. Remember; their justice
was an eye for an eye (Matt 5:38-39).
Indeed, once we have a deeper understanding of the natural world, as well as the time and culture that Messiah Yeshua was operating within; scripture takes on a life of its own, well beyond the modernity that has long infected it. Even friendship with those committed to Messianic Judaism
would expand the mind of those currently confined to western enculturation. Those who are dominated by the modern (and now the mostly westernized) world are oblivious, because they are enculturated, not recreated!
Without the Indwelling Ruach HaKodesh to enlighten them, humans are Spiritually blind: We all have brains, but precious few have the mind of Messiah! (1Co 2:9-12,13-16): Was blind but now I see! And a Tekton was someone who could repair anything that's broken or worn out. Messiah Yeshua is still doing this today! He heals the Soul, by His Impartation: From the Indwelling Holy Spirit, we are renewed; restored; remodeled; recreated. But the carpenter cannot begin to remodel the home until He is first allowed in. (References to a tree: Acts 5:30; 10:39; 13:29; Gal 3:13-14; 1Pe 2:21-24)
For if their casting away is the reconciling of the world, what is the reception except life from the dead? For if the first-fruit is holy, the lump is also holy; and if the root is holy, also the branches. And if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive tree, were grafted in among them, and became a sharer of the root and the fatness of the olive tree with them, do not boast against the branches. But if you boast, it is not you that bears the root, but the root bears you. You will say then, The branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in. Well, because of unbelief they were broken off, and you stand by faith. Do not be high-minded, but fear. For if God did not spare the natural branches, fear lest He also may not spare you either.
Behold then the kindness, and the severity of God; on those having fallen, severity; but on you, kindness, if you continue in the kindness. Otherwise you also will be cut off. And those also, if they do not continue in unbelief, will be grafted in. For God is able to graft them in again. For if you were cut out of the natural wild olive tree, and were grafted contrary to nature into a good olive tree; how much more these being according to nature will be grafted into their own olive-tree? For I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers, lest you should be wise within yourselves; that blindness in part has happened to Israel, until the fullness of the nations has comes in. Romans 11:15-25
He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, I will give to eat of the Tree of Life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God. Rev 2:7