I wonder how many people think that shortly after Jesus’ resurrection, suddenly there appeared the written gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Well, it didn’t quite happen this way. In fact, the earliest gospel of Mark wasn’t written until around 70 A.D. or 40 years after the resurrection of Christ.
Imagine, 40 years! And many Biblical scholars would tell you that the Gospel of Luke was written even later in 85 A.D. Nearly 55 years after Christ’s resurrection. It would be like waiting till now to write the initial biography on the Presidency of John F. Kennedy.
Wouldn’t you think, that by waiting so long, a good deal of detail would have been lost or forgotten? We wonder, if there was no written gospel of Jesus for 40 plus years, what exactly kept the message alive and relevant? Also, what were the circumstances at the time that would compel their writing? Furthermore, were these written accounts put in place to address a particular historical situation? If the answer is “yes”, then how is it possible these ancient scriptures have any relevance for those of us who live in the 21st century?
I look forward to sharing with you some of these thought provoking questions pertaining to the origins of our faith this coming Sunday in anticipation we will make some surprising discoveries along the way.
Peace – Pastor Tom the Younger