The Gospels: Four Portraits of Jesus

The Gospels:
Four Portraits of Jesus
(A) Mark’s Gospel: Written around 70 A.D.
The earliest and shortest Gospel
 Possibly written by John Mark, a companion of the
Apostle Peter
 Written for the church in Rome and for Gentiles
 Often recognized as the Gospel of Action where Jesus
is on the move
 Stresses the humanity and suffering of Jesus
(The Passion and The Cross)
 Portrays Jesus as the suffering servant Messiah
 Messianic Secret: Jesus’ followers take some time to
catch on to who Jesus is, and when they finally do,
Jesus tells them to keep it a secret, given their
expectations of the Messiah
(B) Matthew’s Gospel: Written around 85
A.D. (The Bridge connecting the OT & NT)
 Written by a Jewish author for Jews who
were converting to Christianity
 Stresses Jesus as the fulfillment of
promises made by God in the Hebrew
 Demonstrates Jesus’ role as teacher and
preacher (RABBI)
 Discusses the responsibilities of Jesus’
Matthew and Luke
 Infancy Narratives Genealogy Beatitudes:
 MT: Infancy Narratives with magi
 Genealogy traced to Abraham
 Sermon on mount
 LK: Infancy Narratives with shepherds
 Genealogy traced to Adam
 Sermon on plain
(C) Luke’s Gospel: Written around 85 A.D.
(The only Gentile Evangelist)
 Possibly written by a Gentile doctor for Gentile Christians
 Stresses the following themes:
The universality of the Christian message, by showing the
inclusion of outcasts (women, poor, and sick people)
 Jesus’ compassion, mercy, and concern for sinners
 The miracle stories emphasize Jesus’ compassion for those who
are suffering
 The central role of the Holy Spirit in Jesus’ life
 The Gospel of Luke is the first of a two-volume work, the second
being the Acts of the Apostles focusing on the time period from
the Ascension to the Pentecost and St. Peter’s role in the early
The Synoptic Gospels
 Mark, Matthew, and Luke are
referred to as
 the synoptic gospels because of
their similar portraits of Jesus.
 Synoptic:
seen with the same view or ‘eye’
(D) John’s Gospel: Written around 95 A.D.
 John offers a unique portrait of the Divinity of Jesus
 Probably written by followers of the Beloved Disciple
 Presents Jesus as "the Word of God"
 Stresses the incarnation similar to the creation story in
Genesis (In the Beginning)
Emphasizes faith initiated by God
Builds on poetic and memorable images of Jesus
"I am" statements
Only Gospel to include
Jesus washing the Apostles feet at the Last Supper
Jesus forgiving Peter
The Gospels:
 Evangelists spreading the good news!
 The core belief of Christianity is the
 (A) MARK
 (C) LUKE
 (D) JOHN
The Gospels:
 Synoptic
 (A) MARK
 (C) LUKE
The Bible
 Old Testament
 New Testament
 Pentateuch
 Gospels
 Historical
 Acts of the Apostles
 Wisdom & Poetry
 Letters Epistles
 Prophets
 Revelation