Jesus Rejected at Nazareth

Jesus the Carpenter

At this point in the Wars of the Jews, Josephus is a general defending the city of Jotapata and it turns out he has a real talent at building towers and wooden structures:

“And when the bank was now raised, and brought nearer than ever to the battlements that belonged to the walls, Josephus thought it would be entirely wrong in him if he could make no contrivances in opposition to theirs, and that might be for the city’s preservation; so he got together his workmen, and ordered them to build the wall higher; and while they said that this was impossible to be done while so many darts were thrown at them, he invented this sort of cover for them: He bid them fix piles, and expand before them the raw hides of oxen newly killed, that these hides by yielding and hollowing themselves when the stones were thrown at them might receive them, for that the other darts would slide off them, and the fire that was thrown would be quenched by the moisture that was in them. And these he set before the workmen, and under them these workmen went on with their works in safety, and raised the wall higher, and that both by day and by night, fill it was twenty cubits high. He also built a good number of towers upon the wall, and fitted it to strong battlements. This greatly discouraged the Romans, who in their own opinions were already gotten within the walls, while they were now at once astonished at Josephus’s contrivance, and at the fortitude of the citizens that were in the city.”

– Josephus, Wars of the Jews, Book 3, 7:10

“And he went out from thence, and came into his own country; and his disciples follow him. And when the sabbath day was come, he began to teach {schooled them ;} in the synagogue: and many hearing him were astonished, saying, From whence hath this man these things? and what wisdom is this which is given unto him, that even such mighty works are wrought by his hands? Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us? And they were offended at him. But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, but in his own country, and among his own kin, and in his own house.”

– Mark 6:1-5

Mark says that Jesus was a carpenter, because Josephus built such mighty works and contrivances which astonished his opponents. Later we will see that the book of Matthew says Jesus is the son of a carpenter because his adoptive father, the Lord of heaven and earth also built many great works and engines of war, as well as his biological son Titus.

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