Matthew’s Messianic Shepherd-king: In search of “the lost sheep of the house of Israel”
The article intends to grasp the meaning of the phrase “the lost sheep of the house of Israel” in the Matthean logia of 10:5b-6 (and 15:24). It shows that in recent Matthean research the phrase has become an abstract salvation-historical category disconnected from narrative and historical particularity. However, generally seen, scholars have neglected a thorough treatment of the phrase within both Matthew’s own presentation of the story of Jesus and a firstcentury Jewish eschatological context. In this article the context of the phrase is investigated at several levels. It argues that it should be read against the backdrop of the political-national framework of the Messianic Shepherd-King expectation with its attending expectations for territorial restoration.