A detailed comparison of the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, with accompanying commentary by the author.
Seeking to “produce a harmony that would do more than just place the four gospels alongside each other,” Schenck (Priests and Warriors, 2013) presents an in-depth look at the Gospels, their relationship to passages in the Old Testament and their placement in the Bible as a whole. Often placing the Gospels side by side when narrating the same events or parables—an arrangement usually reserved for the traditionally synoptic Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke, but here also including John—Schenck shows readers a direct connection among the works.This task, though tedious at times, allows for a more robust comparison than simply reading the Gospels separately. For example, readers can now easily see the different treatments of Pontius Pilate for each Gospel. Readers familiar with the birth, life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ will find much in the work familiar, though the author’s insights may not always prove remarkably insightful: e.g., “Among all the people in history, only the Hebrews and their forefathers knew the exact, true pronunciation and spelling of the Great Creator of the Universe.” Nonetheless, the book succeeds in comparing biblical texts in a way that is straightforward and easy to digest. Such a comprehensive look at the Gospels will give readers a useful path in their own journeys toward criticism and understanding.
Notable for its clear organization, though the book as a whole doesn’t provide groundbreaking analysis.