Publication Date

Spring 1984

Document Type



Published in the Grace Theological Journal, 5 no 1 Spr 1984, p 47-75.


The development of Samaritanism and its alienation from Judaism was a process that began with the division of the kingdom of Israel and continued through successive incidents which promoted antagonism, including the importation of foreign colonists into Samaria by Assyria, the rejection of the new Samaritan community by the Jews, the building of a rival temple on Mt Gerizim, the political and religious opportunism of the Samaritans, and the destruction of both the Samaritan temple and their capital of Shechem by John Hyrcanus during the 2d century BC. The Samaritan religion at the time of Jesus had become Mosaic and quasi-Sadducean, but strongly anti-Jewish. Jesus recognized their heathen origins and the falsity of their religious claims.