What Are the Gospels, and Why Are There Four of Them?
The four books of the Bible that record almost everything we know about Jesus are Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. They are thought to have been written by eyewitnesses or people who spoke with them during the first century, and each book contains four different versions of Jesus’ story.
What does the term “gospel” mean?
The word “euangelion” means “good tidings” or “good news,” and it originally referred to God’s deliverance of his people in the Old Testament. It quickly became a technical term for the good news about Jesus Christ, and the word “gospel” refers to written versions of the greatest news ever shared.
The genre of the gospels
A novel is a story, and we know it’s fiction the moment we start reading it, so how we classify it determines how we read it and what we can expect from it.
The gospels are historical literature
The historical accuracy of key gospel events determines whether Christianity succeeds or fails, as Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 15:14, “If Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless.” Each of the four gospels is set in first-century Palestine during the Roman occupation.
The gospels are narrative literature
The gospels are narratives with plot, characters, and setting that deal with the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, with the four gospels presenting different versions of these events and developing plot in different ways.
The gospels are theological literature
The gospel writers are proclaimers of the good news about Jesus Christ’s resurrection. John introduces Jesus as the pre-existent divine Word, God’s self-revelation. Each evangelist has a story to tell and a point of view to emphasize. We should read each gospel looking for theological themes.
Are the gospels ancient biographies?
The gospels are unique, but they share many similarities with Greco-Roman biographies. Biographies were written to preserve the memory of famous people and to celebrate their virtues, teachings, or exploits; the gospels, on the other hand, were not written to memorialize a great leader’s teachings.
So what genre are the gospels?
The gospels are historical narratives motivated by theological concerns, with the goal of conveying accurate historical material about Jesus as well as explaining and interpreting these salvation-bringing events. The gospels were written by evangelists, or “proclaimers of good news,” rather than by detached, uninterested observers.
Why do we have four gospels?
The four gospels give us a deeper, more profound understanding of who Jesus is and what he did because they depict the same Jesus from different perspectives. In John, Jesus is the eternal Son of God, God the Father’s self-revelation.
Why did the church keep four gospels in the canon?
But why did the church keep all four gospels in the canon of Scripture? According to the church, each gospel is a unique literary account and an inspired work of the Holy Spirit.
Why are there only four gospels?
The value and historical reliability of these “apocryphal gospels” is hotly debated; they preserve the occasional authentic saying or story about Jesus, but they’re unreliable for three reasons. The later gospels are more valuable in providing information about early church history.
The four gospels in the Bible have been used to inspire billions, and each one has something unique to say about Christ’s life and ministry. The four gospels in the Bible are the most historically accurate accounts of Christ’s life and ministry. Learn more about the Bible with our free online course.
What do the 4 Gospels represent?
The four Gospels are portraits of the person and work of the long-promised Messiah, Israel’s King, and the world’s Savior, and they present four different poses of one unique personality.
What are the first 4 books of the Bible?
The four Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) are books in the New Testament that tell stories about Jesus’ life, ministry, and death. They were written anonymously and attributed to disciples (Matthew and John) and associates of the apostles (Mark and Luke) sometime in the second century.
How are the 4 Gospels different?
The four Gospel writers were no exception: they had a story to tell and a message to share, but they also had a specific audience in mind for whom that message was intended, so each Gospel writer essentially marketed God’s good news of Jesus Christ as much as was necessary to effectively convey the message.
What are the 7 gospels?
Gospels that are considered canonical
- Synoptic gospels: Matthew’s Gospel, Mark’s Gospel, and Mark’s longer ending (see also the Freer Logion), Luke’s Gospel, and John’s Gospel.
What are the 5 gospels?
u201cThere are five Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke, John…and the Christian,u201d says the author, u201cbut most people never read the first four.u201d
What are the 1st 5 books of the Bible called?
If you’ve never heard of the Five Books of Moses (not actually written by Moses; believers in divine revelation regard him more as a secretary than an author), you’ve probably heard of the Torah and the Pentateuch, the Hebrew and Greek names for the first five books of the Hebrew Bible: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers.
What are the 4 main books in the New Testament?
The Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) are the four books that make up the New Testament, and they tell the stories of Jesus’ life, ministry, and death.
What do the first 5 books of the Bible mean?
The Pentateuch (which Jews refer to as the Torah) consists of the books of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.
How is Jesus presented in the four gospels?
The Gospels tell the story of Jesus Christ, with each of the four books portraying him in a different light. Luke portrays Jesus as the Savior of all people, while John’s Gospel gives us a close-up and personal look at Christ’s identity as the Son of God, revealing Jesus’ divine nature, one with his Father.
Which gospel is most accurate?
Since the 19th century, scholars have regarded Mark as the first of the gospels (the theory of Markan priority), leading to the belief that Mark must be the most trustworthy of the gospels, but there is now widespread agreement that Mark’s author did not intend to write history.
What is the difference between Mark and Luke?
Question: What is the difference between Mark 1:9-11 and Luke 3:21-22? Answer: There is none. The wording is different, which is to be expected given that they were written by two different authors, but the story remains the same.
What are the Lost gospels?
The Canon Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, James, and the Epistles of John use the ancient Codex Sinaiticus as well as other ancient sources in The Lost Gospels of Jesus, a modern English translation of the most ancient manuscripts uncovered from antiquity.
How many gospels are there in Christianity?
There are only four authentic gospels, and this is obvious because there are four corners of the universe and four major winds, so there can only be four gospels that are authentic, and these, moreover, were written by Jesus’ true followers.”
Which is the earliest gospel?
Mark is widely regarded as the first gospel, drawing on a variety of sources such as conflict stories (Mark 2:1u20133:6), apocalyptic discourse (4:1u201335), and collections of sayings, though not the sayings gospel known as the Gospel of Thomas, and most likely not the Q source used by Matthew and Luke.