The main gospels of Jesus were written by four of his disciples Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. The word gospel derived from the Old English meaning “good news” or “glad tidings”. In Greek the word, euangelion(Greek: εὐαγγελίῳ) can mean “good message” or also meant “evangelism”. So in this understanding, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John would be the four Christian evangelists.
The good news was that the Jesus Christ came to take away the sins of the world, and all those who believe in him are forgiven. The Apostle Paul reminded the people of the church in Corinth “of the gospel I preached to you” He is talking about how they are being saved by the gospel and emphasizes the resurrection of Christ and his appearances as written in the “good news”.
It is thought that the gospel of Matthew was probably written in Syria, an ancient Christian center. We could easily affiliate Mark with Peter’s preaching in Rome, as it was a good fit for a Roman audience. It isn’t clear the origin of the gospel of Luke, as many cities were referenced throughout his writings. It is thought that Ephesus, western Anatolia is the place of origin for the Gospel of John.
Dating for when the gospels written are estimates. The earliest surviving complete copies of the gospels date to the 4th century.
Though not the consensus, a majority of scholars agree to the following:
- Mark: c. 68–73, c. 65–70
- Matthew: c. 70–100. c. 80–85.
- Luke: c. 80–100, with most arguing for somewhere around 85, c. 80–85
- John: c. 90–100, c. 90–110