The first four books of the
New Testament are frequently
referred to as the “Gospels”,
each of which provides a narrative
record that describes the
life and ministry of Jesus. These
Gospel accounts present the
‘glad tidings’, or ‘good news’,
that accompany the hope,
promise, and blessing of the
long-awaited arrival of the One
Who had been promised to be the Savior of the world.
While the whole idea of His coming to Earth,
clothed in humanity, is at the heart of both the Old
and the New Testaments, the time, nature and
manner of His coming took many by surprise. For
four thousand years people looked forward to the
Promised One Who would bring salvation to His
people and deliver them from the curse of sin
brought on by Adam and Eve’s encounter with the
serpent. The coming of Jesus is known as His
Advent, which makes all those who were looking
forward to His arrival…Adventists.
Matthew, Mark and Luke are known as the
‘synoptic gospels’ as they describe many of the
same events of Jesus’ ministry in a sort of synchronized
manner. While the details may differ
slightly, the basis of the story can be seen
through the narrative and is largely consistent
across the three Gospel accounts. It is interesting
to consider that all four Gospels treat the very
beginning of Jesus’ life on earth a bit differently.
Two of the four begin by tracing His family tree
back to some point in history and the other two
begin with the launch of His Earthly ministry.
However. one of the Gospels presents the narrative
of Who Jesus was, why He was here, along
with His mission and His purpose, in a more specific
manner than any of the others. Perhaps a
clear understanding of Who He was, and is, would
be a good place to start. The book that bears the
name of the beloved disciple, John, has a
profound message that is foundational to our
doctrines and understanding today.
And while Jesus was indeed born to his earthly
parents, Mary and Joseph, He was unique in every
respect as He came into the world bearing the
identity of God. The message of John is so clear
that it is a wonder that there can be any misunderstanding
regarding the deity of Jesus, yet there is
indeed such a debate, even within our church.
As we go to the Word in our study this week, it is
my prayer that each of us will truly encounter Jesus
as Savior and Lord.
Warmly, Pastor Phil