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.

3. Preparation

 

John the Baptist

Matthew 3

1And in those days cometh John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, saying, 2Repent ye; for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. 3For this is he that was spoken of through Isaiah the prophet, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make ye ready the way of the Lord, Make his paths straight. 4Now John himself had his raiment of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his food was locusts and wild honey. 5Then went out unto him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about the Jordan; 6and they were baptized of him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins.

Mark 1

2Even as it is written in Isaiah the prophet, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, Who shall prepare thy way; 3The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make ye ready the way of the Lord, Make his paths straight; 4John came, who baptized in the wilderness and preached the baptism of repentance unto remission of sins. 5And there went out unto him all the country of Judaea, and all they of Jerusalem; and they were baptized of him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. 6And John was clothed with camel’s hair, and had a leathern girdle about his loins, and did eat locusts and wild honey.

Luke 3

1Now in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judaea, and Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene, 2in the high-priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came unto John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness. 3And he came into all the region round about the Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance unto remission of sins; 4as it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make ye ready the way of the Lord, Make his paths straight. 5Every valley shall be filled, And every mountain and hill shall be brought low; And the crooked shall become straight, And the rough ways smooth; 6And all flesh shall see the salvation of God.

John 1

19And this is the witness of John, when the Jews sent unto him from Jerusalem priests and Levites to ask him, Who art thou? 20And he confessed, and denied not; and he confessed, I am not the Christ. 21And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elijah? And he saith, I am not. Art thou the prophet? And he answered, No. 22They said therefore unto him, Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself? 23He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said Isaiah the prophet.

 

John's Preaching of Repentance

Matthew 3

7But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said unto them, Ye offspring of vipers, who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 8Bring forth therefore fruit worthy of repentance: 9and think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham. 10And even now the axe lieth at the root of the trees: every tree therefore that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

Mark
Luke 3

7He said therefore to the multitudes that went out to be baptized of him, Ye offspring of vipers, who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 8Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham. 9And even now the axe also lieth at the root of the trees: every tree therefore that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

John
 

John Preaching and Replies to Questioners

Matthew
Mark
Luke 3

10And the multitudes asked him, saying, What then must we do? 11And he answered and said unto them, He that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none; and he that hath food, let him do likewise. 12And there came also publicans to be baptized, and they said unto him, Teacher, what must we do? 13And he said unto them, Extort no more than that which is appointed you. 14And soldiers also asked him, saying, And we, what must we do? And he said unto them, Extort from no man by violence, neither accuse any one wrongfully; and be content with your wages.

John
 

John's Messianic Preaching

Matthew 3

11I indeed baptize you in water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you in the Holy Spirit and in fire: 12whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly cleanse his threshing-floor; and he will gather his wheat into the garner, but the chaff he will burn up with unquenchable fire.

Mark 1

7And he preached, saying, There cometh after me he that is mightier than I, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to stoop down and unloose. 8I baptized you in water; but he shall baptize you in the Holy Spirit.

Luke 3

15And as the people were in expectation, and all men reasoned in their hearts concerning John, whether haply he were the Christ; 16John answered, saying unto them all, I indeed baptize you with water; but there cometh he that is mightier than I, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose: he shall baptize you in the Holy Spirit and in fire: 17whose fan is in his hand, thoroughly to cleanse his threshing-floor, and to gather the wheat into his garner; but the chaff he will burn up with unquenchable fire. 18With many other exhortations therefore preached he good tidings unto the people;

John 1

24And they had been sent from the Pharisees. 25And they asked him, and said unto him, Why then baptizest thou, if thou art not the Christ, neither Elijah, neither the prophet? 26John answered them, saying, I baptize in water: in the midst of you standeth one whom ye know not, 27even he that cometh after me, the latchet of whose shoe I am not worthy to unloose. 28These things were done in Bethany beyond the Jordan, where John was baptizing.

 

The Imprisonment of John

Matthew 14

3For Herod had laid hold on John, and bound him, and put him in prison for the sake of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife. 4For John said unto him, It is not lawful for thee to have her.

Mark 6

17For Herod himself had sent forth and laid hold upon John, and bound him in prison for the sake of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife; for he had married her. 18For John said unto Herod, It is not lawful for thee to have thy brother’s wife.

Luke 3

19but Herod the tetrarch, being reproved by him for Herodias his brother’s wife, and for all the evil things which Herod had done, 20added this also to them all, that he shut up John in prison.

John
 

The Baptism of Jesus

Matthew 3

13Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to the Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. 14But John would have hindered him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? 15But Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffereth him. 16And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway from the water: and lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove, and coming upon him; 17and lo, a voice out of the heavens, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

Mark 1

9And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized of John in the Jordan. 10And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens rent asunder, and the Spirit as a dove descending upon him: 11and a voice came out of the heavens, Thou art my beloved Son, in thee I am well pleased.

Luke 3

21Now it came to pass, when all the people were baptized, that, Jesus also having been baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened, 22and the Holy Spirit descended in a bodily form, as a dove, upon him, and a voice came out of heaven, Thou art my beloved Son: in thee I am well pleased.

John 1

29On the morrow he seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold, the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sin of the world! 30This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man who is become before me: for he was before me. 31And I knew him not; but that he should be made manifest to Israel, for this cause came I baptizing in water. 32And John bare witness, saying, I have beheld the Spirit descending as a dove out of heaven; and it abode upon him. 33And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize in water, he said unto me, Upon whomsoever thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and abiding upon him, the same is he that baptizeth in the Holy Spirit. 34And I have seen, and have borne witness that this is the Son of God.

 

The Genealogy of Jesus

Matthew 1

1The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. 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 Temptation

Matthew 4

1Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. 2And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he afterward hungered. 3And the tempter came and said unto him, If thou art the Son of God, command that these stones become bread. 4But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. 5Then the devil taketh him into the holy city; and he set him on the pinnacle of the temple, 6and saith unto him, If thou art the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and, On their hands they shall bear thee up, Lest haply thou dash thy foot against a stone. 7Jesus said unto him, Again it is written, Thou shalt not make trial of the Lord thy God. 8Again, the devil taketh him unto an exceeding high mountain, and showeth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; 9and he said unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me. 10Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve. 11Then the devil leaveth him; and behold, angels came and ministered unto him.

Mark 1

12And straightway the Spirit driveth him forth into the wilderness. 13And he was in the wilderness forty days tempted of Satan; and he was with the wild beasts; and the angels ministered unto him.

Luke 4

1And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan, and was led in the Spirit in the wilderness 2during forty days, being tempted of the devil. And he did eat nothing in those days: and when they were completed, he hungered. 3And the devil said unto him, If thou art the Son of God, command this stone that it become bread. 4And Jesus answered unto him, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone. 5And he led him up, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. 6And the devil said unto him, To thee will I give all this authority, and the glory of them: for it hath been delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it. 7If thou therefore wilt worship before me, it shall all be thine. 8And Jesus answered and said unto him, It is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve. 9And he led him to Jerusalem, and set him on the pinnacle of the temple, and said unto him, If thou art the Son of God, cast thyself down from hence: 10for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee, to guard thee: 11and, On their hands they shall bear thee up, Lest haply thou dash thy foot against a stone. 12And Jesus answering said unto him, It is said, Thou shalt not make trial of the Lord thy God. 13And when the devil had completed every temptation, he departed from him for a season.

John