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Beliefnet is pleased to present the first 7 days of devotionals from Max Lucado’s “3:16: The Numbers of Hope” (Thomas Nelson, 2007). This is Day 6 of the week-long devotional. If you missed the previous days, stay subscribed to this feed to start over at the end of the week.
“He’s just a carpenter.”
–Mark 6:3 (MSG)
Envision a dusty, quiet village. Nazareth. An unimpressive town in an unimpressive nation.
Ignore the nicer homes of the village. Joseph and Mary celebrated the birth of Jesus with a temple offering of two turtledoves, the gift of the poor (Luke 2:22-24). Go to the poorer part of town. Not poverty stricken or destitute, just simple.
And look for a single mom. The absence of Joseph in the adult life of Jesus suggests that Mary may have raised him and the rest of the kids alone. We need a simple home with a single mom and an ordinary laborer. Jesus’s neighbors remembered him as a worker. “He’s just a carpenter.” (Mark 6:3 MSG).
Jesus had dirty hands, sweat-stained shirts, and–this may surprise you–common looks. “No stately form or majesty that we should look upon Him, nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him” (Isa. 53:2 NASB).
Raised in an overlooked nation among oppressed people in an obscure village. Can you spot him? See the adobe house with the thatched roof? Yes, the one with the chickens in the yard and the gangly teenager repairing chairs in the shed.
“He had to enter into every detail of human life. Then, when he came before God as high priest to get rid of the people’s sins, he would have already experienced it all himself–all the pain, all the testing–and would be able to help where help was needed” (Heb. 2:17-18 MSG).
Why would heaven’s finest Son endure earth’s toughest pain? So you would know that he knows how you feel.
–Max Lucado
From 3:16: The Numbers of Hope, by Max Lucado (2007). Used with permission of Thomas Nelson Publishers, Inc.

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