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Additional Resources for Joseph: Carpenter of Steel

Use these additional resources to supplement your study on this topic. Because of the Internet's changing nature, a link may modify or get deleted. If you discover a bad link in the list below, please contact us!


  • Carpentry Tools Through History
    Here is a history of woodworking and of tools.
  • Betrothal and Marriage
    This article discusses how betrothal and marriage worked in Bible times.
  • Arranged Marriages
    This article provides information about arranged marriages, including where they take place around the world today.
  • Betrothal and Marriage Changed over Time
    This article cites biblical and Jewish sources to describe how procedures for betrothal and marriage changed over time.
  • Mary's Shame?
    This article by Lynn Cohick explores whether Mary faced the social stigma of being an unmarried mother, or only the possibility of losing her betrothed husband Joseph.
  • Augustus' Censuses
    What did Caesar Augustus consider his greatest achievements? Here is his own list.
  • Three Censuses
    If you want to jump to Augustus' three censuses, look at number eight here.


  • Bethlehem
    This website discusses how Bethlehem appears today and the ways it commemorates the birth of Jesus.
  • History of Bethlehem
    This article describes Bethlehem's history from the Old Testament through Jesus' birth to today.
  • Finding a Place for Mary to Give Birth
    Read an excerpt about Jesus' birth in Bethlehem from Paul L. Maier's book, The First Christmas.
  • The Inn
    This article discusses the different ways the Greek word for "inn" can be translated.
  • Justin Martyr-the Cave
    Justin Martyr was born only 40 miles from Bethlehem. He wrote that Jesus was born in a cave near Bethlehem. (Scroll down to chapter 78 to read where Justin Martyr speaks of the wise men, Mary's pregnancy and Jesus' birth in a cave.)
  • The Despised Shepherds
    This article includes a nice description of first-century shepherds and cites ancient rabbinic (Jewish) writings to learn why they were often despised in Jewish society.
  • Angels
    This article describes the angels and their work.


  • Leading Your Family
    To help you lead your family, we have produced a video Bible study by Dr. Joel Biermann called "Fatherhood."
  • Jesus' First 40 Days
    This Jewish site speaks of ancient traditions that continue today when a child is born. These include circumcision, naming the child and redeeming a firstborn male.
  • Wise Men
    Searching history, Dr. Paul L. Maier asks if the visit of the wise men is fact or fiction.
  • About the Wise Men
    The Catholic Encyclopedia discusses what we know of the wise men, including testimony from the Church Fathers.
  • The Magi and the Christmas Star
    This interesting article speaks of the Magi and the Christmas star.
  • The Christmas Star
    This in-depth website discusses a possible natural explanation of the Christmas star and how it could have led the wise men to worship the King of the Jews.
  • Natural Explanations for the Christmas Star
    This site offers natural explanations for the Christmas star, including visual graphics and movies which illustrate how the star may have appeared from the earth.
  • Herod the Great
    This article goes into great detail about the ambition and cruelty of Herod--both as he rose to power and as he sought to hold on to that power.
  • How Accurate Are the Biblical Accounts?
    To consider the authenticity and accuracy of the biblical accounts, watch this video: "How We Got The Bible."
  • Did Herod Really Massacre the Infants?
    This article considers whether the Massacre of the Innocents actually occurred.
  • How Did King Herod Die?
    In this article Josephus describes Herod's grisly death.
  • Jewish Settlements in Egypt
    This article describes the turmoil Jews experienced in Egypt during the period between the Old and New Testaments.


  • Herod Archelaus
    This article describes Archelaus' rule and the reasons Joseph was afraid to bring Jesus and Mary back to Bethlehem.
  • Archelaus
    This is another article about Archelaus' brief rule.
  • Herod Antipas
    This article describes the life of Herod Antipas. He ruled Galilee, the region where Jesus grew up and conducted most of His public ministry.
  • Nazareth
    This article describes Jesus' boyhood hometown of Nazareth and gives its history from the Old Testament until today.
  • Nazareth's Important Neighbor
    Learn about Sepphoris, the great city close to Nazareth.
  • Sepphoris
    Joseph and his family may have helped construct Sepphoris, the capital city of Galilee.
  • Jesus' Brothers and Sisters
    Is it possible for us to know if they were Joseph and Mary's children, Joseph's children from a previous marriage, or possibly cousins? Here is one view.
  • Brothers and Sisters of Jesus?
    Here is another view on the subject of Jesus' brothers and sisters.
  • Jerusalem's Attractions
    Jerusalem had plenty of attractions a 12-year-old might have preferred over the temple. Read about a few here.
  • Herod's Towers
    West and to the south of the temple grounds were several spectacular buildings of King Herod the Great, including towers.
  • Herod's Brother Phasael
    Read this article to learn more about Phasael, the brother Herod named a tower after.
  • Two of Herod's Towers
    Read about two more towers Herod built.
  • Three Towers of Herod's Palace
    These three towers guarded Herod's fabulous palace.
  • Possible Site of Jesus' Trial
    Read about the building that may have been the site of Jesus' trial before Roman governor Pontius Pilate.
  • The Antonia Fortress
    Read about the Antonia Fortress, which Herod built and which may be where Jesus was flogged, crowned with thorns and mocked as the "King of the Jews."
  • More on the Antonia Fortress
    Another palace that may have been the site where Jesus was tried.
  • Herod's Hippodrome
    To appeal to his Roman overlords, Herod built a coliseum or hippodrome to the south of the temple. Here he could host chariot races and other forms of Roman entertainment.
  • Herod's Theater
    Herod also built a theater in the south-central part of Jerusalem to entertain wealthy Jews with Greek and Roman drama, though many Jews scorned these places as immoral.
  • Map of Jerusalem
    Here is a map of first-century Jerusalem. (Notice that on this map west is on the top and north is on the right.)
  • Legends: "Protoevangelium of James"
    Early Christians noticed how little information Scripture gave about Joseph and Mary. So some wrote stories to fill in the gaps where the Bible was silent. They often added names of apostles or other early church authorities to make their writings appear more authentic. Most of these are legends. Though there may be some truth here and there, it is difficult to sift through the legends and fabrications to find it. Here is a link to the "Protoevangelium of James."
  • Legends: Pseudo-Matthew
    Here is a link to "Pseudo-Matthew."
  • Legends: "Gospel of the Nativity of Mary"
    Here is a link to the "Gospel of the Nativity of Mary."
  • Legends: "The History of Joseph the Carpenter"
    Here is a link to "The History of Joseph the Carpenter."

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