Summary: Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree...
The Great Carpenter
1 Peter 2:24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.
1. The Usefulness of Wood. It was wood with which a carpenter worked, and out of wood came many useful things. In Bible times it wasn’t so much furniture and decorations that were made, though they were, but more important by far, a carpenter made plows, yokes for animals, and other agricultural machinery, ladders, doorways and doors, wooden locks and keys, and lattice work for windows. It was wood from which much of the Temple walls were made, as well as the Temple furnishings, and it was wood that was used in the sacrifice of millions upon millions of animals, from the days of Adam and Eve until the time of Jesus. Wood was very useful, though also relatively rare in the Land of Israel, even though there is some evidence that it was more abundant then than it is today.
2. Wood Abused. Like virtually everything, however, this blessing of God can be abused, and it was abused in many ways, in the Bible. It was wood, the trunk and branches of a tree, where the snake slithered up in the Garden of Eden, and from which the devil inside the snake spoke to Eve and lured her into rebelling against her God; from the wood of that tree the serpent conquered and enslaved the entire human race and turned them against their Creator to lives of self-centeredness and rebellion. And sometimes, wood is involved in specific acts in that rebellion.
It was wood which many skilled carpenters took, and very carefully, very skillfully, sometimes even very beautifully, turned into…idols. A detailed description of a craftsman making an idol from wood is given in a number of segments in the Book of Isaiah, off and on in chapters 40 through 46. With this wood the craftsman would make a disgusting misrepresentation of what he thought was a god, but in fact was not, and no one was smart enough to catch on that from the same block of wood which he had used to make his “god,” he took pieces and used it to bake bread in an oven or simply to warm himself.
It was wood that the heathen nations all around used for their detestable Asherah poles, and even the Israelites adopted the custom. When God called Gideon to free His people from the Midianites Gideon began by cutting down his own father’s idolatrous pole (Judges 6:25ff.)
It was wood that formed the shaft of King Saul’s spear, which he threw several times at the innocent young David and once at his own son Jonathan, in an angry attempt to destroy them (1 Samuel 18, 19, 20).
It was wood with which King Nebuchadnezzar heated his fiery furnace seven times hotter than normal in an attempt to execute three good men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, for no crime other than refusing to bow in worship to anything but the true God (Daniel 3).
It was wood from which the wicked Haman built his 75-foot high gallows to hang Queen Esther’s cousin Mordecai (Esther 5:9-14).