Five Rivers Church
The Outsiders: Samaritans and Gentiles
Matthew is the gospel of the outsider, so as we close this series we wrap up with a look at two large people groups who found themselves to be just that: outsiders in the Jewish world.
Locations & Times
  • Five Rivers Church
    1450 E Dorothy Ln, Dayton, OH 45429, USA
    Sunday 11:00 AM

Characters Series

Tap or click on the link below to see all of the messages in the "Characters" series.
Gentile = anyone who is not Jewish
The word doesn't tell us who someone is; it tells us who they are not
Samaritans = descendants of the people left in northern Israel after the Assyrian invasion of Israel in 721 B.C. Intermarriage of this group with the Assyrian people resulted in a group of part-Jew/part-Gentile people.

They were despised by the Jewish people for a number reasons:

They were not "fully Jewish"
They built their own temple at Mt Gerizim
They had their own unique copies and interpretations of Torah
They had their own high priest and sacrificial systems
They believed they were the true descendants of Israel
Who Were the Magi?

Magi is transliterated from the Greek word "magos" which is used to refer to someone as magician, sorcerer or astrologist.

The biblical Magi are likely astrologers from the East who saw the star in the West. They must have also had some knowledge of the Hebrew scriptures as they came seeking Jesus as "king of the Jews".

The reference to the star they followed is likely from Numbers 24:17 which reads, in part ...
“I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not near. A star will come out of Jacob; a scepter will rise out of Israel."
Some Reasons Why The Story of The Magi is So Important

It shows us the first time that Jesus is recognized and worshiped as King of the Jews. This initial recognition and worship doesn't not come from Jewish people; it comes from Gentiles.

Matthew's telling of the Jesus story is the only one to include the story of the Magi, and in turn, the only one to mention the star.

This story reinforces the theme of Matthew as the "gospel of the outsider" pointing to a direct, prominent reference to Gentiles who seek, find and worship Jesus.
Things You May Not Know About The Magi ...

Our English word "magic" comes from this word.

The English word "epiphany" comes from the Greek word "epiphaneia" which means "appearance" or "manifestation". Because the Magi recognized the manifestation of God in human form, early Christians began celebrating this event as the holiday of Epiphany.

Because Epiphany is celebrated twelve days after Christmas, this holiday is where the "twelve days of Christmas" has it roots.
Something to think about ...

How would you respond to the question, "What is the gospel (good news) of Jesus?