12 Days Gospels
When you are thinking about the Christian faith and hear the number four, what is the first thing that pops into your mind? The four Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. When you look at how each Gospel is written and purposed, you see that the four Evangelists are giving us a complete picture of our Lord.
Matthew is often symbolized as a man. He wrote his Gospel for the Jews to understand and believe that Jesus is the Son of David. With this emphasis, Matthew has the most Old Testament quotations and allusions as he builds his case from the Scriptures.
Mark is often symbolized by a lion. He wrote his Gospel primarily for the Jews in Alexandria to show Jesus as the Son of God in human flesh (1:1). For Him, Jesus is best symbolized as the lion from the tribe of Judah (Genesis 49:9).
Luke is often symbolized by an ox or bull. As a Gentile himself, he wrote his Gospel to other Gentiles (particularly Theophilus) to show that salvation in Christ is available for all people. Many Jews believed that only they, as the physical descendants of Abraham, would be saved and allowed into Heaven. Luke uses several instances where Jesus interacts with Gentiles and is merciful to them.
John is typically symbolized by an eagle. John's was the last Gospel written. He wrote to Christians to strengthen them in their faith. His Gospel is usually divided into seven signs and seven "I AM" statements. John gives all these to strengthen faith in Christ.
We need all four Gospels so that we have a complete picture of our salvation in Christ. Each Evangelist has his own point of view, but so do all of us. Through these four Gospels, we see Jesus as the God-Man who came to save the world from their sins. Amen.