Heidegger's Bible Handbook: Harmony of the Gospels: Chapter Summary



Why would God will the Gospel history to be written by several? Various reasons for the quaternary number of Evangelists, 1. Jerome thinks that they are adumbrated by the mystical four-Cherub Chariot of Ezekiel. The four living creatures were contrived by the ancients themselves in diverse ways, 2. In what do the Evangelists agree and differ? A reason for the difference is rendered out of Chrysostom, 3. The Harmony of the Gospels is defined. The committing of it to writing is not accidental, since the Evangelists themselves furnish notice of the order; but useful in the highest degree:hence also attempted by ancient and more recent men, 4. In order rightly to establish that harmony, the true computation of the time of the ministry of Christ is to investigated, and that time is to be distributed into certain years.The general bounds of the ministry of Christ, namely, His Baptism and ascension into Heaven, 5. The space of time between His Baptism and ascension variously disputed among ancient and more recent men, 6. That interval divided by Passovers.Four Passovers are elicited out of John. Scaliger’s opinion of a fifth is refuted, 7. The computation of four Passovers, or three and a half years out of Daniel, is also gathered out of foreign histories, 8. How the time of the ministry of Christ might be able to be distributed into certain years, in such a way that, with the beginning and end of each year established, it might be able to be observed to what years, or to what particular Passovers, the histories are to be referred, is investigated, 9. How might the histories of the individual years or Passovers be reduced to a certain series? It is demonstrated that in this matter the Evangelists stretch out their hands to each other, 10. Various rules are established for investigating the order and progression of the histories, 11. Six Parts of the harmony are enumerated. I. The History preceding the public ministry of Christ. II. The beginning of His ministry from His Baptism unto the first Passover. III. History of the first Passover, or of the first year after the initial half. IV. History of the second Passover. V. History of the third Passover. VI. History of the fourth Passover, or the one pertaining to His death.Interpreters of the Harmony of the Gospels, and a Synoptic Table of it, 12.

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Dr. Steven Dilday holds a BA in Religion and Philosophy from Campbell University, a Master of Arts in Religion from Westminster Theological Seminary (Philadelphia), and both a Master of Divinity and a  Ph.D. in Puritan History and Literature from Whitefield Theological Seminary.  He is also the translator of Matthew Poole's Synopsis of Biblical Interpreters and Bernardinus De Moor’s Didactico-Elenctic Theology.

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