memory of my mother,
Elizabeth Ann Talbot, whose love
for the Gospel story, whose instruction
in the things of Christ, and whose godly life greatly influenced
her son to become a minister of the Gospel, this book is prayerfully dedicated.
When Luke, "the beloved physician," addressed his Gospel record to his friend, Theophilus, he said that many had "taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us." (See Luke 1:l-4.)
By this he meant that many had written stories of the earthly life of the Lord Jesus, of His death, resurrection, and ascension into heaven. We can well imagine that scores of human authors would want to write of such a life! But God selected only four men to put on record the sacred story, men inspired by the Holy Spirit to write these four Gospels, which form the very heart of the written Word of God.
If we are to understand the purpose of the Holy Spirit in recording these first four books of the New Testament, we must seek to find from the records themselves just what that purpose is. Why are there four of these inspired stories— no more, no less? Why not only one? Why not a dozen or a score?
In the series of radio Bible lessons before us, we want to try to answer these questions. We shall not attempt a harmony of the Gospels. We shall not attempt a verse-by-verse exposition of these first four books of the New Testament.
We shall, rather, try to get a comprehensive view of the fourfold portrait of our Lord Jesus, as the Holy Spirit presents Him in the Gospel story, as recorded by Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.
In so doing, we shall see something of His majesty and glory, something of His love and grace.
Above all, it is our prayer that we shall come to know and love Him better; and knowing and loving Him, to make Him known, ever more zealously, to a Christless world.
—Louis T. Talbot