There are some researchers who believe that the order of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John may have been the actual order that the gospels.Reverend William F. Luck believes that Luke was written before Mark, but others, like Chuck Missler believe that Mark was written before Luke. Some modern scholars believe that none of the gospels were written by the people that were said to traditionally have written the gospels, however, like I would disagree with them. In my own personal studies, I find evidence that the gospels were written at the time that the traditional scholars believe. In this presentation, I will share some of that evidence.
First, evidence shows that all of the gospels with the exception of John were written before 70 AD and I will explain why I believe this concerning each of the books.
Evidence That Matthew Was Written First
As stated in the Bible, Matthew was a tax collector. As a tax collector, he was an educated man and tax collectors of his day had the ability to take shorthand. The fact that Matthew gave a detailed account of the Sermon of the Mount shows that he probably took notes of Jesus words as he spoke them. Matthew wrote the book to show evidence that Jesus was the king that the Jews were searching for. He probably wrote the book shortly after the Christ’s Resurrection. This genealogy at the beginning of Matthew is apparently the genealogy of Joseph, Jesus’ earthly father.
Another indication that Matthew was written first is that it is written in Aramaic whereas the rest of the gospels are written in Greek. Initially the gospel was meant for the Jews and then the Gentiles. Although it is not known exactly when he wrote the book, Matthew probably wrote this book shortly after the establishment of the church in Jerusalem.
The purpose of his book was to establish that Jesus was in fact a descendent of Abraham through David and had the lineage to stand as the King of Israel.
If this book were written any time after 70 AD when Jerusalem was destroyed, then we would have to wonder where Matthew got his genealogy evidence because the genealogies were destroyed with the temple.
Evidence that Mark Was Written Second
As the church grew from a Jewish sect into a separate group, there came a need for a Greek translation. Because John-Mark had traveled with Paul and Barnabas, he no doubt had knowledge of the Greek language far more than many of the other young men of his day. The gospel of Mark is written from the Apostle Peter’s perspective. John Mark no doubt read Matthew’s account and used it (rather than the other way around). Peter then told John Mark his account of the events that lead up to the Crucifixion and Resurrection and the words were then translated into Greek so that other Christians around the known world would have copies in the language that most people spoke at that time.
Luke was the historian and wrote in a chronological order. There is evidence that he interviewed people using first person accounts. As I read his account, I actually got the feeling that he spoke with Mary the mother of Jesus. It begins with a story that only Mary herself would have known. It also tells a lineage that is different from Matthew’s genealogy. This genealogy is not of Joseph’s genealogy, but is Mary’s. In Jewish traditions, if a man had no sons, he adopted his son in law as his own son so that his lineage can continue. Check out this Jewish Tweets post http://www.jewishtreats.org/2009/07/laws-of-inheritance.html
The book of Acts picks up where Luke ends. Acts is apparently a continuation of the book of Luke. The book of Acts ends before the destruction of the temple and Jerusalem otherwise, why would he not have mentioned such an important event in his writings? This is more evidence that this gospel was written prior to 70 AD.
The Gospel of John
John’s writing is writing like a man who loved his Lord. This book was obviously written by an older man who had quit caring so much about the physical world and was more interested in spiritual matters. In reading all of John’s writings, I have no doubt that the same person wrote The gospel of John, the letters of John I, John II, John III and the Revelation of Jesus Christ as revealed to John. In each of these books, John always stressed Christ’s love for his followers. As we read John, we see beyond the veil of this world and can see the very heart of God, of his son, and the Holy Spirit in this man. John is telling us not to get too caught up in the stories that Jesus told and the works that Jesus did. He wants us to get to know the Jesus that he knew. And we can. We simply have to use the ears that John used. The ears of love.