Original Research - Special Collection: HTS 75th Anniversary Maake Masango Dedication

Jesus – The immigrant Egyptian Jews in Matthew’s Sondergut: A migration perspective

Zorodzai Dube
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 75, No 4 | a5256 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v75i4.5256 | © 2019 Zorodzai Dube | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 04 September 2018 | Published: 15 August 2019

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Zorodzai Dube, Department of New Testament and Related Literature, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa

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Using pull and push factors inspired by the migration theory, this study explains Matthew’s Sondergut concerning Jesus’ flight to Egypt from the perspective of possible pull–push factors associated with Egypt and Palestine during the first century. Within early Christianity, two perception strands concerning Egypt existed: on the one hand, Jews such as Celsus depicted Egypt negatively as a place of magic and oppression. Yet another perspective portrays Egypt as a place of refuge, recuperation and recovery – a view reflected in Luke-Acts, Matthew and some parts of Mark. Not disregarding views that read the story as Midrash or allegory, this study focuses on Matthew’s Sondergut concerning Jesus’ flight to Egypt as narrative explainable from a positive migration perspective, and argues that the prosperity of Egypt and possible political turmoil in Palestine during the first century give plausible reconstruct for Matthew’s Sondergut regarding Jesus’ flight to Egypt as a place of refuge and sustenance.


Egypt; Reception; Refuge; Jesus; Holy Family; Memory


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