The Synoptic Gospels presented side-by-side

American Standard Version

Current Translation:

The synoptic gospels consist of books of Matthew, Mark, and Luke. These three gospels contain much of the same material. The books of Matthew and Luke tell nearly all of the stories told in Mark. Matthew and Luke also share several stories that are not in Mark. In addition, all three books are written as if the authors had personally observed all of the events and were reporting what they saw at the time.

The Gospel of John specifically omits much of the material found in the synoptic gospels. It also contains a considerable amount of material that is not found in Matthew, Mark, and Luke. It appears that John wrote his gospel as a supplement to the other gospels. Whether or not John actually had seen them is unknown, but it appears that he at least knew the contents of synoptic gospels. In the areas where John does tell of the same events, he tends to add information that is not in the other gospels. This may primarily be because the Gospel of John was written many years after the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus. This is supported by the literary style used in John. The author is obviously telling the narrative looking back on the events in a more reflective style than the synoptic gospels. The contents of John also supports this view. For instance, in John's telling of the Anointing in Bethany (John 12:1-8), John names Mary as the woman who anointed Jesus with nard. The synoptic gospels left the woman nameless, most likely to protect her. By the time that John wrote his gospel, the threat to her for being named would have past.

Insights like these are why it is so important to study all of the gospels together. That is why we've put this site together, so you can study the life of Jesus with each gospel side-by-side.

2. Birth and Childhood

 

The Promise of the Birth of John the Baptist

Matthew
Mark
Luke 1

5There was in the days of Herod, king of Judaea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abijah: and he had a wife of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elisabeth. 6And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless. 7And they had no child, because that Elisabeth was barren, and they both were now well stricken in years. 8Now it came to pass, while he executed the priest’s office before God in the order of his course, 9according to the custom of the priest’s office, his lot was to enter into the temple of the Lord and burn incense. 10And the whole multitude of the people were praying without at the hour of incense. 11And there appeared unto him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. 12And Zacharias was troubled when he saw him, and fear fell upon him. 13But the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zacharias: because thy supplication is heard, and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John. 14And thou shalt have joy and gladness; and many shall rejoice at his birth. 15For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and he shall drink no wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb. 16And many of the children of Israel shall he turn unto the Lord their God. 17And he shall go before his face in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to walk in the wisdom of the just; to make ready for the Lord a people prepared for him. 18And Zacharias said unto the angel, Whereby shall I know this? for I am an old man, and my wife well stricken in years. 19And the angel answering said unto him, I am Gabriel, that stand in the presence of God; and I was sent to speak unto thee, and to bring thee these good tidings. 20And behold, thou shalt be silent and not able to speak, until the day that these things shall come to pass, because thou believedst not my words, which shall be fulfilled in their season. 21And the people were waiting for Zacharias, and they marvelled while he tarried in the temple. 22And when he came out, he could not speak unto them: and they perceived that he had seen a vision in the temple: and he continued making signs unto them, and remained dumb. 23And it came to pass, when the days of his ministration were fulfilled, he departed unto his house. 24And after these days Elisabeth his wife conceived; and she hid herself five months, saying, 25Thus hath the Lord done unto me in the days wherein he looked upon me, to take away my reproach among men.

John
 

The Annunciation

Matthew
Mark
Luke 1

26Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, 27to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. 28And he came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favored, the Lord is with thee. 29But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this might be. 30And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favor with God. 31And behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. 32He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Most High: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: 33and he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. 34And Mary said unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? 35And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Spirit shall come upon thee, and the power of the Most High shall overshadow thee: wherefore also the holy thing which is begotten shall be called the Son of God. 36And behold, Elisabeth thy kinswoman, she also hath conceived a son in her old age; and this is the sixth month with her that was called barren. 37For no word from God shall be void of power. 38And Mary said, Behold, the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her.

John
 

Mary's Visit to Elizabeth

Matthew
Mark
Luke 1

39And Mary arose in these days and went into the hill country with haste, into a city of Judah; 40and entered into the house of Zacharias and saluted Elisabeth. 41And it came to pass, when Elisabeth heard the salutation of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit; 42and she lifted up her voice with a loud cry, and said, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. 43And whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come unto me? 44For behold, when the voice of thy salutation came into mine ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy. 45And blessed is she that believed; for there shall be a fulfilment of the things which have been spoken to her from the Lord. 46And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, 47And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. 48For he hath looked upon the low estate of his handmaid: For behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. 49For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; And holy is his name. 50And his mercy is unto generations and generations On them that fear him. 51He hath showed strength with his arm; He hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their heart. 52He hath put down princes from their thrones, And hath exalted them of low degree. 53The hungry he hath filled with good things; And the rich he hath sent empty away. 54He hath given help to Israel his servant, That he might remember mercy 55(As he spake unto our fathers) Toward Abraham and his seed for ever. 56And Mary abode with her about three months, and returned unto her house.

John
 

The Birth of John the Baptist

Matthew
Mark
Luke 1

57Now Elisabeth’s time was fulfilled that she should be delivered; and she brought forth a son. 58And her neighbors and her kinsfolk heard that the Lord had magnified his mercy towards her; and they rejoiced with her. 59And it came to pass on the eighth day, that they came to circumcise the child; and they would have called him Zacharias, after the name of his father. 60And his mother answered and said, Not so; but he shall be called John. 61And they said unto her, There is none of thy kindred that is called by this name. 62And they made signs to his father, what he would have him called. 63And he asked for a writing tablet, and wrote, saying, His name is John. And they marvelled all. 64And his mouth was opened immediately, and his tongue loosed, and he spake, blessing God. 65And fear came on all that dwelt round about them: and all these sayings were noised abroad throughout all the hill country of Judaea. 66And all that heard them laid them up in their heart, saying, What then shall this child be? For the hand of the Lord was with him. 67And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Spirit, and prophesied, saying, 68Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; For he hath visited and wrought redemption for his people, 69And hath raised up a horn of salvation for us In the house of his servant David 70(As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets that have been from of old), 71Salvation from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us; 72To show mercy towards our fathers, And to remember his holy covenant; 73The oath which he sware unto Abraham our father, 74To grant unto us that we being delivered out of the hand of our enemies Should serve him without fear, 75In holiness and righteousness before him all our days. 76Yea and thou, child, shalt be called the prophet of the Most High: For thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to make ready his ways; 77To give knowledge of salvation unto his people In the remission of their sins, 78Because of the tender mercy of our God, Whereby the dayspring from on high shall visit us, 79To shine upon them that sit in darkness and the shadow of death; To guide our feet into the way of peace. 80And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, and was in the deserts till the day of his showing unto Israel.

John
 

The Genealogy of Jesus

Matthew 1

2Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judah and his brethren; 3and Judah begat Perez and Zerah of Tamar; and Perez begat Hezron; and Hezron begat Ram; 4and Ram begat Amminadab; and Amminadab begat Nahshon; and Nahshon begat Salmon; 5and Salmon begat Boaz of Rahab; and Boaz begat Obed of Ruth; and Obed begat Jesse; 6and Jesse begat David the king. And David begat Solomon of her that had been the wife of Uriah; 7and Solomon begat Rehoboam; and Rehoboam begat Abijah; and Abijah begat Asa; 8and Asa begat Jehoshaphat; and Jehoshaphat begat Joram; and Joram begat Uzziah; 9and Uzziah begat Jotham; and Jotham begat Ahaz; and Ahaz begat Hezekiah; 10and Hezekiah begat Manasseh; and Manasseh begat Amon; and Amon begat Josiah; 11and Josiah begat Jechoniah and his brethren, at the time of the carrying away to Babylon. 12And after the carrying away to Babylon, Jechoniah begat Shealtiel; and Shealtiel begat Zerubbabel; 13and Zerubbabel begat Abiud; and Abiud begat Eliakim; and Eliakim begat Azor; 14and Azor begat Sadoc; and Sadoc begat Achim; and Achim begat Eliud; 15and Eliud begat Eleazar; and Eleazar begat Matthan; and Matthan begat Jacob; 16and Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ. 17So all the generations from Abraham unto David are fourteen generations; and from David unto the carrying away to Babylon fourteen generations; and from the carrying away to Babylon unto the Christ fourteen generations.

Mark
Luke 3

23And Jesus himself, when he began to teach, was about thirty years of age, being the son (as was supposed) of Joseph, the son of Heli, 24the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, the son of Melchi, the son of Jannai, the son of Joseph, 25the son of Mattathias, the son of Amos, the son of Nahum, the son of Esli, the son of Naggai, 26the son of Maath, the son of Mattathias, the son of Semein, the son of Josech, the son of Joda, 27the son of Joanan, the son of Rhesa, the son of Zerubbabel, the son of Shealtiel, the son of Neri, 28the son of Melchi, the son of Addi, the son of Cosam, the son of Elmadam, the son of Er, 29the son of Jesus, the son of Eliezer, the son of Jorim, the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, 30the son of Symeon, the son of Judas, the son of Joseph, the son of Jonam, the son of Eliakim, 31the son of Melea, the son of Menna, the son of Mattatha, the son of Nathan, the son of David, 32the son of Jesse, the son of Obed, the son of Boaz, the son of Salmon, the son of Nahshon, 33the son of Amminadab, the son of Arni, the son of Hezron, the son of Perez, the son of Judah, 34the son of Jacob, the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham, the son of Terah, the son of Nahor, 35the son of Serug, the son of Reu, the son of Peleg, the son of Eber, the son of Shelah, 36the son of Cainan, the son of Arphaxad, the son of Shem, the son of Noah, the son of Lamech, 37the son of Methuselah, the son of Enoch, the son of Jared, the son of Mahalaleel, the son of Cainan, 38the son of Enos, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.

John
 

The Birth of Jesus

Matthew 1

18Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found with child of the Holy Spirit. 19And Joseph her husband, being a righteous man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily. 20But when he thought on these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. 21And she shall bring forth a son; and thou shalt call his name JESUS; for it is he that shall save his people from their sins. 22Now all this is come to pass, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying, 23Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, And they shall call his name Immanuel; which is, being interpreted, God with us. 24And Joseph arose from his sleep, and did as the angel of the Lord commanded him, and took unto him his wife; 25and knew her not till she had brought forth a son: and he called his name JESUS.

Mark
Luke 2

1Now it came to pass in those days, there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be enrolled. 2This was the first enrolment made when Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3And all went to enrol themselves, every one to his own city. 4And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David; 5to enrol himself with Mary, who was betrothed to him, being great with child. 6And it came to pass, while they were there, the days were fulfilled that she should be delivered. 7And she brought forth her firstborn son; and she wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

John
 

The Adoration of the Infant Jesus

Matthew 2

1Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, Wise-men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, 2Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we saw his star in the east, and are come to worship him. 3And when Herod the king heard it, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. 4And gathering together all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ should be born. 5And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written through the prophet, 6And thou Bethlehem, land of Judah, Art in no wise least among the princes of Judah: For out of thee shall come forth a governor, Who shall be shepherd of my people Israel. 7Then Herod privily called the Wise-men, and learned of them exactly what time the star appeared. 8And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search out exactly concerning the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word, that I also may come and worship him. 9And they, having heard the king, went their way; and lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was. 10And when they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy. 11And they came into the house and saw the young child with Mary his mother; and they fell down and worshipped him; and opening their treasures they offered unto him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. 12And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way.

Mark
Luke 2

8And there were shepherds in the same country abiding in the field, and keeping watch by night over their flock. 9And an angel of the Lord stood by them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. 10And the angel said unto them, Be not afraid; for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be to all the people: 11for there is born to you this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord. 12And this is the sign unto you: Ye shall find a babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, and lying in a manger. 13And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, 14Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace among men in whom he is well pleased. 15And it came to pass, when the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing that is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. 16And they came with haste, and found both Mary and Joseph, and the babe lying in the manger. 17And when they saw it, they made known concerning the saying which was spoken to them about this child. 18And all that heard it wondered at the things which were spoken unto them by the shepherds. 19But Mary kept all these sayings, pondering them in her heart. 20And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, even as it was spoken unto them.

John
 

The Circumcision and Presentation in the Temple

Matthew
Mark
Luke 2

21And when eight days were fulfilled for circumcising him, his name was called JESUS, which was so called by the angel before he was conceived in the womb. 22And when the days of their purification according to the law of Moses were fulfilled, they brought him up to Jerusalem, to present him to the Lord 23(as it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy to the Lord), 24and to offer a sacrifice according to that which is said in the law of the Lord, A pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons. 25And behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and this man was righteous and devout, looking for the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Spirit was upon him. 26And it had been revealed unto him by the Holy Spirit, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. 27And he came in the Spirit into the temple: and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, that they might do concerning him after the custom of the law, 28then he received him into his arms, and blessed God, and said, 29Now lettest thou thy servant depart, Lord, According to thy word, in peace; 30For mine eyes have seen thy salvation, 31Which thou hast prepared before the face of all peoples; 32A light for revelation to the Gentiles, And the glory of thy people Israel. 33And his father and his mother were marvelling at the things which were spoken concerning him; 34and Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the falling and the rising of many in Israel; and for a sign which is spoken against; 35yea and a sword shall pierce through thine own soul; that thoughts out of many hearts may be revealed. 36And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher (she was of a great age, having lived with a husband seven years from her virginity, 37and she had been a widow even unto fourscore and four years), who departed not from the temple, worshipping with fastings and supplications night and day. 38And coming up at that very hour she gave thanks unto God, and spake of him to all them that were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem.

John
 

The Flight into Egypt and Return

Matthew 2

13Now when they were departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I tell thee: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him. 14And he arose and took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt; 15and was there until the death of Herod: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt did I call my son. 16Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the Wise-men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the male children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the borders thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had exactly learned of the Wise-men. 17Then was fulfilled that which was spoken through Jeremiah the prophet, saying, 18A voice was heard in Ramah, Weeping and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children; And she would not be comforted, because they are not. 19But when Herod was dead, behold, an angel of the Lord appeareth in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, saying, 20Arise and take the young child and his mother, and go into the land of Israel: for they are dead that sought the young child’s life. 21And he arose and took the young child and his mother, and came into the land of Israel.

Mark
Luke
John
 

The Childhood of Jesus at Nazareth

Matthew 2

22But when he heard that Archelaus was reigning over Judaea in the room of his father Herod, he was afraid to go thither; and being warned of God in a dream, he withdrew into the parts of Galilee, 23and came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth; that it might be fulfilled which was spoken through the prophets, that he should be called a Nazarene.

Mark
Luke 2

39And when they had accomplished all things that were according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their own city Nazareth. 40And the child grew, and waxed strong, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon him.

John
 

The Boy Jesus in the Temple

Matthew
Mark
Luke 2

41And his parents went every year to Jerusalem at the feast of the passover. 42And when he was twelve years old, they went up after the custom of the feast; 43and when they had fulfilled the days, as they were returning, the boy Jesus tarried behind in Jerusalem: and his parents knew it not; 44but supposing him to be in the company, they went a day’s journey; and they sought for him among their kinsfolk and acquaintance: 45and when they found him not, they returned to Jerusalem, seeking for him. 46And it came to pass, after three days they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the teachers, both hearing them, and asking them questions: 47and all that heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers. 48And when they saw him, they were astonished; and his mother said unto him, Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? behold, thy father and I sought thee sorrowing. 49And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? knew ye not that I must be in my Father’s house? 50And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them. 51And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth; and he was subject unto them: and his mother kept all these sayings in her heart. 52And Jesus advanced in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.

John