About Matthew 15:24

What does Matthew 15:24 mean?

 Matthew 15:24

    He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

The question we received was why was the seeker turned away (temporarily) and why did Jesus say he was “only” seeking the “lost sheep of Israel.”  Did he not care for the others?  There is an earlier related passage. 

   Matthew 10:5-6

    These twelve Jesus sent out, instructing them, “Go nowhere among the Gentiles and enter no town of the Samaritans, [6] but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

 I.   R. T. France, Matthew, P. 177,178

            Re: Mt 10:5,6:

            “This startling restriction of the disciples’ mission to Israel is found only in Matthew, where it is matched by an equally restricted statement of Jesus’ own mission (15:24).  Yet this same Gospel not only recognizes a deliberate mission to Gentiles at a later period, after the resurrection (28:19-10; 24:14), but also includes sayings of Jesus which include other nations in God’s plan of salvation (8:11,2; 21:43; 25:32), and we have seen in the early chapters a clear interest in the significance of Jesus for the Gentiles (2:1-12; 4:14-16, 24-25).  Matthew cannot then be accused of anti-Gentile bias.  Rather this saying reflects the historic fact that with very few exceptions (8:5-13 deals with a Gentile in Jewish territory; 15:21-28 is clearly presented as exceptional) the mission of both Jesus and his disciples before the resurrection was in fact limited to Israel;  the time for the Gentile mission was later.  The emphasis of the saying lies not primarily in the prohibition of a wider mission, but on the primary focus of Jesus’ ministry; the call was urgent and demanded total concentration (cf. 10:23).  They were lost sheep, a common Old Testament metaphor (Jer 50:6; Ezk 34:1-16; Is 53:6)…”  

 II. Other notes.

The original Greek reads something like

“I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel”

 “I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”  King James Version

             That puts the emphasis on Jesus following his calling to Israel.  See Mark 1:35-39 for the sense that Jesus ministry was directed by the Father; John 2:4 for the importance of timing, and John 17:4 for the importance of Jesus doing what the Father directed.

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4 thoughts on “About Matthew 15:24

  1. The lost sheep are the twelve tribes of Israel who are still lost from their home land, scattered into the four corners of the earth. -Psalm 83:4- *Matthew 18:11 For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost. *Matthew 25:33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. *Psalm 100:3 Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. (Matthew 19:28)

  2. John 10:7 Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. *Matthew 26:40 And he cometh unto the disciples, and findeth them asleep, and saith unto Peter, What, could ye not watch with me one hour? *Revelation 18:10 Standing afar off for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas, that great city Babylon, that mighy city! for in one hour is thy judgment come. *Genesis 6:5 And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. (Isaiah 11:11)

  3. The twelve tribes of Israel are the descendants of the trans atlantic slave trade in America (Psalm 77:15) Black is a skin color, not a nationality. Negros were captured in Africa, and sold by the Hamites (Jeremiah 8:21) (Deuteronomy 28:68). The Israelites, are from Jerusalem. The 144,000 are the Israelites and no one else! (Psalm 108:8) Where is the so called black man from? (Exodus 11:7) Christ is Hebrew an Israelite a black man? Who is calling God a liar, you will die

  4. The most high God is against the most proud people (Jeremiah 50:32) *Jeremiah 50:36 A sword is upon the liars (Revelation 21:8) Is the Pope called a sainthood (Revelation 19:10) The Israelites are coming back to their homeland of Jerusalem (Galatians 4:26) Those Israeli’s Jewish folks are Devil’s who worship in synagogues *Revelation 2:9* (Titus 1:14) and on the Jerusalem wall (2nd Kings 1826-27) The state of Israel are Satanists who stole the so called black man’s heritage and is pretending to be from Christ lineage, the tribe of Juda. (Hebrews 7:14 ) To enter into the new Jerusalem the 144,000 you must have a gate and a tribe! Ezekiel 48:31 and Revelation 21:13

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