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The Gospels [message #13723] Mon, 22 March 2021 10:42 Go to next message
Gary  is currently offline Gary
Messages: 1025
Registered: August 2008
Location: Indiana
Senior Member
Several years ago I started reading the Gospels repeatedly. I wanted to see what God Himself was saying in His Word concerning the Kingdom of God. So why not go directly to the life of Jesus the Son of God. The whole Bible points to the Life of Christ and what we needed to know about God Himself.

Everything was fine I kept reading them over and over, until I realized I was running into a constant problem. I could not reconcile why Matthews gospel always seemed to have a different story line when it came to certain events.

In fact I was beginning to question what Matthew was saying. Many things Matthew said was completely different from the other gospel writers.

For instance: there's a number of events that are totally different in Matthews gospel. Matt. 8 were told that there was two men possessed of devils and when Jesus cast them out they went into the 2000 pigs who ran violently down the hill and jumped in the sea. Mark and Luke say there was only one man. This is only one event I questioned there are a number of things that took place that Matthew tells a different story then Mark and Luke.

I finally thought well this is a "Paradox" meaning; A statement that seems to contradict itself but may nonetheless be true.

It was easy to eliminate Johns gospel because he only talked about the last year of Jesus ministry and he was trying to show that Jesus was the Messiah who was to come.

Matthew, Mark, and Luke did not appear to have a true harmony of the events.

I recently realized Matthew and John were both there when Jesus was on the earth ministering. They seen the miracles, dead raised up and daily watched and listened to the Words of Jesus.

I thought later maybe Matthew had more of the facts then Mark and Luke. Luke came later after Pentecost and searched out the information by talking to people who were present when Jesus was ministering. Mark on the other hand may of been a young man who was present during some of Jesus ministry. I know most believe he was in the garden the night of Jesus betrayal. Only in his gospel is the story told of a young man wrapped in a linen cloth who fled away naked when they tried to apprehend him. Many believe this was Mark.

I could be wrong still open to knowing what took place during Jesus ministry. For now I think that Matthews gospel is probably more direct in the facts then Mark or Luke's gospel.

There are a number of things that take place besides this event in the synoptic gospels that I could bring up. I do believe that the scriptures were inspired by God through the writers. Maybe there is more to the story then what were seeing through their eyes. Don't know if anyone else has run across these events in the Bible. I know there must be a reasonable explanation. Is this what they mean by an enigma?

Maybe the word; "Paradox" gives a better explanation.

In Him,

[Updated on: Mon, 22 March 2021 10:44]

Re: The Gospels [message #13724 is a reply to message #13723] Tue, 23 March 2021 16:00 Go to previous messageGo to next message
william  is currently offline william
Messages: 1454
Registered: January 2006
Senior Member
Hi Gary,

Things can sometimes seem to be inconsistent or contradictory when, in actuality, they are not: If I said 100 men got on the train and you said "a" man got on the train, can't we both be right? It all depends on our perspective. Even when the statements seem totally contradictory, like if I said: 100 men got on the train and you said there were 100 women that boarded the train; are these statements mutually exclusive?

Maybe there are 200 people that are now on the train, or maybe I meant "men" as in "mankind" (or, if we listen to the textual critics maybe someone dropped the "wo" when they were transcribing the conversation!)

Would we be more convinced of inspiration if all 4 gospels said exactly the same thing or would we be more convinced that each one was a copy of the other with only the author's name changed? Actually, the second option would seem to be the more suspicious, at least to me!

Here's one that puzzled me for years:

[Act 9:7 KJV] 7 And the men which journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice, but seeing no man.

[Act 22:9 KJV] 9 And they that were with me saw indeed the light, and were afraid; but they heard not the voice of him that spake to me.

Both of these accounts are from the mouth of Paul. (for completeness sake, see the other passage where he mentions the event: [Act 26:13 KJV] 13 At midday, O king, I saw in the way a light from heaven, above the brightness of the sun, shining round about me and them which journeyed with me.)

Then I read this passage and it shed a little light on things:

[Jhn 12:28-29 KJV] 28 Father, glorify thy name. Then came there a voice from heaven, [saying], I have both glorified [it], and will glorify [it] again. 29 The people therefore, that stood by, and heard [it], said that it thundered: others said, An angel spake to him.

People react differently to things... some heard the voice, some just heard thunder.

I may be a bit naive but even if there was a situation that seemed to be a real contradiction I'd still be hard-pressed to believe it!

Satan, even when he is first introduced, starts off by messing around with the actual words of God when he talks to Eve. In the temptation of Jesus, he's found doing the same sort of thing by promoting his own ideas concerning the meaning of Scripture. Paul lets us know that we ought not be ignorant of Satan's devices!

[2Co 2:11 KJV] 11 Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.


I want to believe!
Re: The Gospels [message #13725 is a reply to message #13724] Tue, 23 March 2021 21:01 Go to previous messageGo to next message
james  is currently offline james
Messages: 2137
Registered: April 2008
Location: Birmingham, AL
Senior Member
I've read and reread The Gospels I don't know how many times, comparing each writers account of Jesus' miracles as well as the parables He used to make His teaching more understandable to the hears and later, us readers. Seems like each time I discover something I hadn't noticed before, or someone will teach/preach from a text and I'll see it from a different perspective with better insight. John said if every single thing Jesus did was recorded that the world could not hold the volumes of writings. While I occasionally have to remind myself that Matthew and John were part of the twelve and Luke and Mark weren't; but that doesn't discredit their Gospels or lessen their inspiration. Paul wrote under the inspiration of The Holy Spirit that ALL scripture is God breathed and useful for teaching, instruction, ect (II Timothy 3:16-17)

“But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us,”
Re: The Gospels [message #13726 is a reply to message #13725] Wed, 24 March 2021 13:33 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Mark L  is currently offline Mark L
Messages: 840
Registered: October 2006
Location: Canada
Senior Member
I've always seen that issue as people being human. In other words they aren't just copying what they are told to write or being divinely inspired to put down on paper. They were simply being human and recording what they remembered. There may have been 2 blind men there but they knew one of them or the memory of one stuck out to them for some reason. Or maybe they were in a hurry and wanted to get this part done before bedtime. Or perhaps it was a chaotic situation and they didn't see everything. Or afterwards they went over and talked to one of the blind men and got his story and it just stuck with them.

While it was all inspired it was 4 different vantage points that would allow the writers to see from different directions. Distinctly human personalities writing/recording with all their irks and quirks while being divinely inspired from on high.

I've always heard that Mark was recording Peters recollection of events.

Fires will be kindled to testify that two and two make four. Swords will be drawn to prove that leaves are green in summer.”

G.K. Chesterton
Re: The Gospels [message #13727 is a reply to message #13724] Wed, 24 March 2021 21:51 Go to previous message
Gary  is currently offline Gary
Messages: 1025
Registered: August 2008
Location: Indiana
Senior Member
Thanks for all the thoughts on this, I've had to wrestle with it for a while. I know all the Word is inspired by God, but did not quite know how to deal with it.

Little better perspective now.

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