Yeshua the Good Shepherd – James Tissot

During his service to the Eternal here on earth, Yeshua did not normally deal with gentiles (non-Jewish people or non-members of the House of Yisra’el) although he did encounter them because Yisra’el was under occupation by foreign forces and he travelled to areas where gentiles lived.
When he sent the apostles to proclaim the  Gospel of the kingdom, he told them not to go to the gentiles

Matthew 10:5-6 [The Scriptures - TS]
5 “Do not go into the way of the gentiles, and do not enter a city of the Shomeronites{Samaritans}, 
6 but rather go to the lost sheep of the house of Yisra’el.
 [Words of Yeshua in purple]

On one occasion, Yeshua was in the region of Tyre and a woman, whose daughter was possessed by an unclean spirit, fell down at his feet and begged him to free her daughter from it.


Matthew 15:22-26 [TS]
21 And יהושע{Yeshua} went out from there and withdrew to the parts of Tsor{Tyre} and Tsidon{Sidon}. [Tyre and Sidon, Phoenicia, here named from its chief cities, was north of upper Galilee, and inhabited by Gentiles] 
22 And see, a woman of Kenaʽan came from those borders and cried out to Him, saying, “Have compassion on me, O Master, Son of Dawid! My daughter is badly demon-possessed.” 
23 But He did not answer her a word. And His taught ones came and asked Him, saying, “Send her away, because she cries after us.” 
24 And He answering, said, “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Yisra’el.” 
25 But she came and was bowing to Him, saying, “Master, help me!” 
26 And He answering, said, “It is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the little dogs.” 
27 But she said, “Yea Master, for even the little dogs eat the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.” 
28 And יהושע answering, said to her, “O woman, your belief is great! Let it be to you as you desire.” And her daughter was healed from that hour. 
[Yeshua's words in purple]
This passage describes the only instance on record in which Yeshua left Jewish territory.

Yeshua did not spend his time with the gentiles not because it was not the plan, but  because it was not yet the time for it. Yeshua, took care in every instance to fulfil the mission that the Eternal gave him. He did not reveal himself publicly to sit on the throne of David, at that time. So much so that, on one occasion,  he was forced to flee when the crowd wanted to proclaim him king of Yisra’el.

John 6:14-15 [Hebraic Roots Bible - HRB]
14 Then seeing what miraculous sign Yahshua did, the men said, This is truly the Prophet, the One coming into the world.
15 Then knowing that they were about to come and seize Him, that they might make Him king, Yahshua withdrew again to the mountain alone by Himself.

Yeshua knew that it was not yet the time to sit on the throne of David which will occur at his return and the establishment of the Kingdom of the Eternal here on earth. Yisra’el was waiting for the promised ‘King’ that would restore the Davidic Kingdom and free them from their oppressors; but it was not yet time for Yeshua to sit as King.
We find another aspect of his mission in the book of Mark

Mark 2:17 [TS]
...Those who are strong have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I did not come to call the righteous to repentance, but sinners. 

Yeshua was not chosen and sent by the Eternal to dedicate his time to teach the gentiles and he did not spend his time calling the righteous who kept the Torah. His mission was to look for the ‘lost sheep of the House of Yisra’el, the ten northern tribes that were dispersed, lost their identity and corrupted themselves with pagan ways and strange gods.

Ezekiel 34:6 [TS]
6 “My sheep wandered through all the mountains, and on every high hill. And My sheep were scattered over all the face of the earth, and no one was seeking or searching for them.”

Yeshua’s mission was to look for what was lost and that is why the writer of the book of John records Yeshua saying 

John 10:16 [TS]
“And other sheep I have which are not of this fold – I have to bring them as well, and they shall hear My voice, and there shall be one flock, one shepherd.

The message of the Kingdom would go out to the whole world in the decades and centuries after Yeshua

Matthew 24:14
“And this Good News of the reign shall be proclaimed in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end shall come.

But Yeshua did not do it in person rather he did it through his disciples. The ‘lost sheep of the House of Yisra’el’ were scattered all over the world and when the Good News was eventually preached to them,  the nations would hear it as well. The choosing of Yisra’el was not a rejection of the rest of the world by the Eternal but it was done to win the world.  Everything has its time

What is Yeshua referring to when he says <…“I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Yisra’el”>
To understand Yeshua’s main mission we have to take a brief look at history:


17th Century before Yeshua

The Patriarchs of the Yisraelites, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob bring the belief in One God to the Promised Land where they settle.
• Famine forces the Yisraelites  to migrate to Egypt. Jacob (Yisra’el), his 12 sons and their families migrate and settle in Egypt where their descendants were reduced to slavery and pressed into forced labour. 


13th Century before Yeshua

• Moses leads the Yisra’elites from Egypt, followed by 40 years of wandering in the desert.
• The Torah, including the Ten Commandments received at Mount Sinai.
• During the next two centuries, the Isra’elites conquered most of the Land of Israel and relinquished their nomadic ways to become farmers and craftsmen;
13th – 12th Century before Yeshua

 Yisra’elites settle the Land of Yisra’el.

ca. 1020 before Yeshua • Yisra’elite Monarchy established. Saul is the first King of Yisra’el.
ca. 1004-965 before Yeshua • King David establishes Yisra’el as a major power in the region.
ca. 1000 before Yeshua Jerusalem made capital of David’s Kingdom
ca. 965-930 before Yeshua Solomon succeeds his father David. 
ca. 960 before Yeshua First Temple, the national and spiritual centre of the Jewish people, is built in Jerusalem by King Solomon
ca. 930 before Yeshua • After Solomon’s death the Kingdom divided into:
House Judah (Judah & Benjamin) capital in Jerusalem and 
House of Yisrael (ten northern tribes) capital in Samaria.
ca. 722 – 720 before Yeshua House of Yisra’el crushed by Assyrians; 10 tribes exiled (Lost Sheep of the House of Yisra’el). They are the ones Yeshua came for.
ca. 586 before Yeshua

House of Judah conquered by Babylonia; Jerusalem and First Temple destroyed; most Jews exiled to Babylonia 

Main source: Brian C Thomas

[This table is limited to the time when the Kingdom is divided into two smaller kingdoms and they are taken into captivity. The House Judah came back from exile but the House of Yisra’el (the dispersed ten tribes of Yisra’el) were scattered, assimilated and lost their identity.]

Hundreds of years later Yeshua tells a parable known as the ‘Prodigal Son’ –  Luke 15:11-32. As most people know, it is about a father who had two sons and the younger one asked for his inheritance, left his father’s house and squandered all his inheritance. The eldest son stayed in his father’s house and did not lose his identity. And a day came when the youngest son came to his senses

Luke 15:17-24 [TS]
17 “But having come to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have bread enough and to spare, and I am perishing with hunger! 
18 ‘Having risen, I shall go to my father and say to him, “Father, I have sinned against the heaven, and before you, 
19 and I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Make me like one of your hired servants.”                                                                                                                                                                   20 “And having risen, he went to his father. And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was moved with compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him. 
21 “And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against the heaven, and before you, and I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ 
22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. 
23 ‘And bring the fattened calf here and slaughter it, and let us eat and rejoice, 
24 because this son of mine was dead and is alive again, and he was lost and is found.’ And they began to rejoice.

When the older son heard the feast and the merry-making he asked about it

Luke 15:25-32 [TS]
25 “And his older son was in the field, and when he came and approached the house, he heard music and dancing. 
26 “And having called one of the servants he asked what this meant. 
27 “And he said to him, ‘Your brother has come, and your father has slaughtered the fattened calf because he received him back in health.’ 
28 “And he was wroth and would not go in. So his father came out and pleaded with him. 
29 “And answering, he said to his father, ‘See, these many years I have been serving you, and I have never transgressed a command of yours, but to me you have never given a young goat, so I could rejoice with my friends. 
30 ‘But when this son of yours came, who has devoured your livelihood with whores, you slaughtered the fattened calf for him.’ 
31 “Then he said to him, ‘Son, you are always with me, and all I have is yours. 
32 ‘And we had to rejoice and be glad, for your brother was dead and is alive, and was lost and is found.’ ” 

Who went to convince the elder brother that the return of the younger brother was sincere?
The father did. It was not the younger son who sought his brother to ask him to be recognised as a brother.
Who will convince or inspire the ‘older brother’ (the Jews) that their younger brother (Lost Sheep of the House of Yisra’el) is returning? The Eternal, the Elohim of Yisra’el is the One who will do it.
Yeshua left the parable there. Why? Because the parable ends in the book of Isaiah who wrote these verses eight centuries before Yeshua  

Isaiah 11:13 [HRB]
3 And the envy of Ephraim shall turn off; and Judah's foes shall be cut off. Ephraim shall not envy Judah, and Judah shall not trouble Ephraim.

We cannot go to Judah (the older brother) and ask them to accept us because, as Yeshua showed in the parable, it will be the Eternal Himself who will convince Judah to accept their younger brother, the ‘Lost Sheep of  the House of Yisra’el’ (Ten Northern Tribes).
These scattered individuals of the Ten Northern Tribes are the ones that Yeshua came to find. He sent his disciples to find them and by doing this the other non-Yisraelite nations, where the lost sheep were located, also heard the Good News of the Kingdom of the Eternal and were saved.

If you claim to believe in Messiah Yeshua then you are part of Yisra’el, you are part of the ‘lost sheep of the House of Yisra’el’ because the promises were given to the Seed of Abraham…this Seed led to Yisra’el which ultimately leads to Messiah Yeshua – Galatians 3:16
As believers in Yeshua we are grafted into the olive tree of Yisra’el as new branches in Messiah Yeshua (Jeremiah 11:16; Romans 11; Isaiah 11:1; John 15)

Yeshua the Messiah’s mission was to gather the ‘Lost Sheep of the House Of Yisra’el, which includes you; if you believe in Yeshua and strive to follow the commandments of Yahweh, you will be in his coming Kingdom here on earth! 
Arístides Moreno, Mario Javier Sabán, William Barkley NT Commentary, Brian C Thomas