Mark L. Strauss has a book called Four Portraits, One Jesus: A Survey of Jesus and the Gospels (2nd edition) that I think is fantastic.
I read through the book in a few days and found it packed with helpful information on the Gospels. The formatting is appealing and easy to read, and the content is great.
This isn’t a book that gets too deep in the weeds. Rather, it’s a book that will help all readers of the Bible, academic and non-academic.
Strauss answers just about every question a person can think of about the four Gospels. And then adds further resources for more detail.
If you want the skinny on the four Gospels, this is the book to begin with. Hands down.
From the publisher.
To Christians worldwide, the man Jesus of Nazareth is the centerpiece of history, the object of faith, hope, and worship. Even those who do not follow him admit the vast influence of his life. For anyone interested in knowing more about Jesus, study of the four biblical Gospels is essential.
The second edition of Four Portraits, One Jesus has been updated throughout to meet the needs to today’s students. It is a thorough yet accessible introduction to the four biblical Gospels and their subject, the life and person of Jesus. Like different artists rendering the same subject using different styles and points of view, the Gospels paint four highly distinctive portraits of the same remarkable Jesus.
With clarity and insight, Mark Strauss illuminates these four books addressing the following important areas:
- First he addresses the nature, origin, methods for study, and historical, religious, and cultural backgrounds of the Gospels.
- He then moves on to closer study of each narrative and its contribution to our understanding of Jesus, investigating things such as plot, characters, and theme.
- Finally, he pulls it all together with a detailed examination of what the Gospels teach about Jesus’ ministry, message, death, and resurrection, with excursions into the quest for the historical Jesus and the historical reliability of the Gospels.
This textbook together with its workbook, video lectures, and laminated sheet gives students everything they need for a thorough and enriching study of Jesus and the Gospels.