DEAR BILLY GRAHAM: I’d never read the Bible much, but this year I made a New Year’s resolution to read through the New Testament, and so far I’ve kept it. But why are there four accounts of Jesus’ life instead of just one? They all seem to tell the same story. — V.P.
DEAR V.P.: I commend you for carrying through on your commitment; I’m afraid most New Year’s resolutions die after only a few weeks. And God will bless you, not just for persevering, but also because the Bible is God’s word and he will speak to you through it.
May your experience be like that of the disciples outside Jerusalem after the resurrection: “Were not our hearts burning within us while he … opened the Scriptures to us?” (Luke 24:32).
All four Gospels tell about us about the life and ministry of Jesus, and on the surface they may seem very similar. But each one contains information that isn’t found in the others, and we need all four if we’re to get a complete understanding of who Jesus was and what he came into the world to do. Each Gospel is like a portrait, showing us new things about Jesus.
At the same time, all four Gospels focus on Jesus. As you read, you’ll discover that Jesus was far more than a great man or a wise teacher. He was God in human flesh, sent from heaven to demonstrate God’s love for us. He did this by giving his life as the final sacrifice for our sins.
As you read the Bible, ask God to help you see Jesus as he really is. Then may you respond by trusting him as your savior and giving him your life. Jesus said, “Whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:26).
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