But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
Read Chapter 10
Gregory The Dialogist
Isn’t it clear to all, dearly beloved, that our Redeemer came into the world for the salvation of the Gentiles? Yet when we behold Samaritans called daily to the faith, what did he mean when he sent his disciples to preach and said, “Go nowhere among the Gentiles, and enter no town of the Samaritans, but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel”? He wished that the proclamation be offered first to the Jews alone. Then it would be offered to the Gentiles. This conclusion we draw from the actual outcome of history. When the former were called but refused to be converted, the holy preachers would turn to the calling of the Gentiles as outsiders. So what happened to the Jews by way of example proved to be an increase of grace for the Gentiles. For there were at that time some from among the Jews who were to be called and some from among the Gentiles who were not to be called.
For think not at all, says He, because they insult me, and call me demoniac, that I hate them and turn away from them. Nay, as I sought earnestly to amend them in the first place, so keeping you away from all the rest, to them do I send you as teachers and physicians. And I not only forbid you to preach to others before these, but I do not suffer you so much as to touch upon the road that leads there, nor to enter into such a city. Because the Samaritans too are in a state of enmity with the Jews. And yet it was an easier thing to deal with them, for they were much more favorably disposed to the faith; but the case of these was more difficult. But for all this, He sends them on the harder task, indicating his guardian care of them, and stopping the mouths of the Jews, and preparing the way for the teaching of the apostles, that people might not hereafter blame them for entering in to men uncircumcised, Acts 11:3 and think they had a just cause for shunning and abhorring them. And he ca...