Mark 6:3 Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Judas and Simon?

Have we considered the state of this world if there were no tradesmen? What kind of a predicament would we be in if there were no welders, plumbers, truck drivers, farmers or mechanics? One can be a mathematical genius or memorize all the literature back to Titus Flavius Josephus, but if he cannot find someone to build his house or repair his car; well, you figure it out.

Jesus became a Rabbi His last three years on Earth. Before that He was a carpenter. Jesus built things. The term carpenter also may have referred to “artisan,” “contractor,” or “handyman. A carpenter may have worked with stone, metal or wood. Jesus was a tradesman of some kind, we know that for sure. Because my Savior was a tradesman, I feel privileged to have taught industrial skills and worked as a carpenter.

Being a carpenter is a unique occupation. Even though framing a wall, setting trusses or sheeting a roof is similar from one job to the next, every job is different. Can you imagine trying to sort out people as different as we all are? God must have a big computer!

Genesis 1: 27 tells us God created us in His own image. We know we don’t look like God and He doesn’t look like us, so that must mean in His spiritual image.

Even though we are created in the spiritual image of God, we are made up of about sixty chemical elements. Four of those actually make up most of our bodies; carbon, oxygen, hydrogen and nitrogen. God created man from the dust of the earth but He spoke the universe into existence from nothing.

If I build a house, furniture or cabinets, I must have materials to work with. Not God; He spoke the universe into existence. Cool, huh? Only God!

I was preaching a revival at a church in the county where I taught. About the third night, a young man (anyone under 60 is young) approached me and asked, “Do you remember me?” Even though over the years I’d had literally thousands of students, I honestly could say, “Yes, I do remember you.”

The reason I remembered him was because he was very quiet and I perceived him to be interested and listening very attentively. Teachers do not experience that very often.

He told me he had just finished building his house and he was able to do that because of what he learned in my industrial arts class. This kind of experience is one of the greatest rewards a teacher can have.

I thought of what he told me several times after that. There was a great satisfaction to me to know he had actually had a visible, tangible benefit by being in my class. One Sunday morning, right smack-dab in the middle of a Great Commission sermon, I thought of what he had said to me.

I told the story of that young man in the sermon and the thought that had just crossed my mind. Then, I asked the congregation the question: “How would you like to be in Heaven some day, and someone walk over to you and say, “I’m here because you told me about the Lord and how I could be saved?”

I know there will be no such thing as pride in Heaven, but there will be joy and happiness. So many times, especially thousands of miles from home, we say, or is said to us as we leave, “If I don’t see you again here on Earth, I’ll see you in Heaven.” That is such a comforting thought.

Heaven is a real place where the people of God will live one day. John 14:1-3 even says that Jesus is in heaven preparing a place for us to live. In heaven, those saved by God will have new bodies without the curse of sin! There will be no one who is blind, deaf or lame in heaven (Isaiah 35:5-6 and Philippians 3:21). Although Jesus builds houses in heaven, the Bible also says that those saved will also build their own houses and inhabit them as well as plant and eat from vineyards (Isaiah 65:21). Most importantly God will be in heaven and He wants you there, and all He asks of you, is to believe. He wants to dwell with you and wipe away all your tears (Revelation 21:1-4).

The Bible also speaks of Hell. Revelation 20: 13- 15, “The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. 14 Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second [c]death. 15 And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.”

I preach very little about Hell, even though I regard it as a reality. The Bible speaks about the lake of fire, the place of everlasting torment, where the worm dieth not and the fire is never quenched. I don’t know about you, but that sounds extremely uncomfortable to me. However, I also believe, God-Jesus came to Earth to die for our sins because He loves us, and not to scare us into Heaven.

The second best advice I would give a young person: cross train and prepare for more than one occupation. That sure is good occupational insurance. The best advice is to believe in Christ Jesus, crucified for the remission of sin and resurrected.