How is The Synoptic Gospel Better than Four Separate Gospels?

There are many ways that The Synoptic Gospel is better than reading the four separate Gospel accounts of the life and ministry of Jesus Christ.

The biggest advantage with having a merged harmony of the four Gospels of the New Testament is that when the texts are aligned, and the words are combined and merged on a word-for-word basis, all of the repetition of the stories, and the duplication of their words is removed.  Almost half (49%) of all of the 3,779 verses that make up the four Gospels are repeated or paralleled in one or more of the other Gospel accounts.  By consolidating the overlapping and repeated words, a text is produced that is fully 22% shorter, and this makes it not only faster to read, but the story is now much easier to understand.

A second advantage to having one consistent Gospel story created by combining the four Gospel texts is that removing the duplication and repetition also eliminates the confusion caused by reading the same thing more than once, or even over and over again, as when all four of the Gospel accounts are recalling the same event or saying.  There are several sayings and stories of Jesus that are found in three, and even all four of the Gospel accounts, and it is confusion to have to read the same thing more than once. read more

The Gospel as Four Witnesses?

In discussing a single Gospel account that is unified from the texts of the four Gospels of the New Testament, I have many times heard some version of this statement, which is usually given as an objection to a having merged Gospel:  “It is important to have the four different Gospels, because they are like four witnesses,” and then they usually add, “at a traffic accident.”

For a while thi4 Gospel Writerss made sense, until I thought about it.  In the first place, the Gospel story of The Life and Ministry of Jesus Christ is not a “traffic accident”  – whatever you mean by that.  Could a worse analogy be chosen, besides anything else to do with witnessing a murder, war or other crime?

Why not use a positive, meaningful analogy, like, “Four witnesses to a birth” – as in the birth of Christianity. Or perhaps, “four witnesses at the Coronation of a King”; or “four witnesses at a wedding”, as Jesus is pictured as a Groom, and the Church as His Bride (Revelation 19:7, 21:9).  You can pick any nice event that requires witnesses, and it will be better, rather than to think of the four Gospel writers as witnesses at a “traffic accident”. read more