Overview: We begin our New Testament study with the first three books of the New Testament – Matthew, Mark, and Luke. The first four books of the New Testament are known as gospels. The word “gospel” means “good news”. They are called the gospels, or good news books, because they are about the life of Jesus. God chose to give us 4 different accounts of Jesus’ life with 4 different writers and 4 different views of our Saviour.
The first three gospels are know as the “synoptic” gospels because they are similar. In a later lesson we will see why John’s gospel is different. You will notice that we will not read the gospels in the order of their chapters. We will read them in the order that the events happened. Chronological order can often help us to understand Jesus’ life a little better.
So…Merry Christmas! Our first week of readings is about Jesus’ birth. Notice that only Matthew and Luke wrote about this event. Don’t be discouraged in reading the long list of names in Matthew 1. See how many you actually recognize. Keep in mind that God is concerned with individuals as well as groups. The Jews were special, even known as God’s chosen people, because they were the family of the Messiah. But they were each individually important to God as well.