The town of Jerusalem has been dusty and buzzing with electricity over this man. He heals people who have impossibly difficult diseases. He loves people with a genuine heart and is always trying to help the priests see their wicked ways. He frequently shows them their evil, and they sometimes recognize a new more righteous pathway to walk. It is mere seconds before they fall back into their wicked ways. Men who are rich in wealth, power, and property are harder to win over than it is to thread a needle with a camel. The needle will be made no bigger for the likes of wealthy men. It is an honor to pass through that door and the door is as solid as a rock guarded by the angel Gabriel himself.
Mahel was face to face with Jesus who lovingly asked him “You there, son of Abraham, what is your name and how do you spend your time?”
Mahel was relieved that Japheth was not there to hear his answer. Nobody he was close with was there. What a relief. When Mahel was a boy He had always wanted to learn how to build furniture like his dad. When Mahel was a teenager, he was tested in the art of keeping secrets. Once he was shown to keep them well his dad began to teach him the art of joinery. Joinery is the art of fastening wooden structures together without the use of nails or screws. Joinery carpenters use the boards themselves. Shaping them into puzzle like pieces that fit into place and could only be separated by destroying the furniture or knowing exactly how to pull them apart.
This art was kept so secret that the young man and his dad would cut nails very short and drive them into the furniture where they would have been if it weren’t joined together. This may have taken away from the point of the joinery but Mahel and his father were the 3rd most successful carpenters in the Jerusalem.
When Jesus asked Mahel, “what is your name and how do you spend your time?”
Mahel answered, “I am a joinery carpenter, Master, and my name is Mahel.” The word “joinery” had only passed his lips a dozen or so times, when he was first in the tutelage of his dad. He was severely punished every time. That word had been floating in the annals of Mahel’s mind, never crossing his lips, for decades.
Once he had heard what he said his eyes widened, looking into Jesus’, he became dizzy and his face burned hot with the heat of his body’s rising temperature. Jesus reached out his hand and Mahel grasped Jesus as He took him in for deep embrace that calmed him right away, cooled him down and comforted him. It was as if this man knew what was about to happen, prepared for it, and planned the whole event Mahel thought.
Once the moment had passed, Mahel thought to leave. Realizing that nobody who knows him personally was there, and that the word joinery was so foreign to everybody that they most likely heard the word “carpenter” only. He stayed, trusting that Jesus’ teaching would cover his immense screw up.
Japheth showed up with squinted eyes and a big grin. He hugged Mahel and sat down to listen to Jesus. Everybody there was happy to hear Jesus speak. He had a way with scripture. He looked at it from an angle not many people had seen before, let alone spoke about. He taught people how to take in scripture with an open mind, untainted from the world, and unselfishly. Jesus was talking about God, and how He guided Jeremiah the prophet to speak to multitudes of powerful men. It was then that the priests, scribes and pharisees came electrically swarming into the court like hornets defending their nest.
The men had an energy about them, as if they were well prepared for a battle they believed had already been won. The pharisees wanted Jesus dead. The Son of David was well aware of that and so was the crowd. A women was thrown into their midst like an object or a pawn, like a bloody weapon that screamed “Jesus is guilty, Jesus is guilty.”
They wanted the crowd to see that like the sanhedrin, Jesus, a man of the law, cared about the law and it’s importance more than He did for the multitude. Conversely if, He did not feel this way they then wanted to show Him as a person who was soft and not fit for leading the people. The pharisees and priests were sure that they had set before Jesus a circumstance that was His last judgement. They had no clue that like Mahel, they were about to slip. They were about to divulge just a little too much information in all their excitement. Like children playing a game. Similar to Jesus healing the ear of the man who arrested Him in the garden (love for an enemy), Jesus would not allow the crowd in it’s entirety to recognize what His Father showed him (love for an enemy), revealing just how calculated and evil the pharisees truly were.
There she was, ashamed and crumpled like a dead spider, trying to assume the fetal position.
“This woman was caught in adultery” a priest shouted.
“We caught her in the very act!” He said while turning to his cohorts and motioning with his hands, inviting support. His eyes turned into slits that bore into Our Savior. “What say You Jesus?” The priest said. ” The law requires us to stone a woman who is an adulteress.”
Jesus sat down and wrote in the dirt. He let some time pass. There wasn’t even a murmur, as the priest’s words sank into Jesus’ reaching mind. He was in a desperate time. He needed to see what His Father was doing so He too could follow in His footsteps. Once He saw what The Father allowed Him to see, His mouth opened.
“He who is without sin shall cast the first stone” He said, looking at the priests first with a knowing eye and fiery judgement; Then, down at the woman with worried empathy and compassion. Confidence rooted His emotions.
The older, wiser of the pharisees recognized that Jesus figured out their game, and that they had lost. They were ashamed maybe, scared, disappointed, astonished. taken aback? They turned and walked away, starting with the oldest and ending with the youngest until it was only Jesus and the woman standing there.
Japheth and Mahel walked home together discussing what Jesus had taught before all the drama. They couldn’t believe what had occurred and Mahel was contemplative, melancholy about what he had just seen. He knew there was something very wrong about what had happened there. With time, prayer and devotion he would understand the depth of what had occurred and strength would ride on it’s coat tails. He wanted even more now to be with Jesus. He was sure that only this Jesus could save them from the mess of the world they lived in. The boys lovingly embraced one another and departed. Mahel went into his wood shop, said a prayer, and found himself shortening nails.