Comparison of Epistles and Gospels
Comparison of the two: law and grace.
SNT – 273
Publication Date: 02-14-1965
Victor Paul Wierwille (December 31, 1916 – May 20, 1985) dedicated his life to the research and teaching of the Bible. In his quest for truth he consulted and worked with some of the most outstanding individuals in Biblical studies and Christian living; including Karl Barth, Joseph Bauer, Glenn Clark, Karl J. Ernst, Joseph Friedli, Louis C. Hessert, Elmer G Homrighausen, E. Stanley Jones, George M. Lamsa, Richard and Reinhold Niebuhr, K. C. Pillai, Paul Tillich, Ernst Traeger, and many others.
Dr. Wierwille received his Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Theology degrees from present day Lakeland College, and conducted graduate studies at the University of Chicago and Princeton Theological Seminary. It was at Princeton that Wierwille earned the Master of Theology degree in Practical Theology. He later completed his Doctor of Theology degree at Pike's Peak Bible Seminary and Burton College in Manitou Springs, Colorado.
Dr. Wierwille was the author of numerous books in the field of Biblical research, including Are the Dead Alive Now?; Receiving the Holy Spirit Today; Jesus Christ Our Passover; and Jesus Christ Our Promised Seed. Additionally, he developed and taught several comprehensive classes directed toward helping people to understand the Bible and to increase the power of God in their lives, such as the Power For Abundant Living series, Living Victoriously, and the University of Life courses. Dr. Victor Paul Wierwille was the founder and president of a world-wide Biblical research, teaching, and fellowship ministry for forty years; as well as the founder and president of several Biblical research centers, colleges, leadership training, and Christian outreach programs associated with it.
Victor Paul Wierwille served the Lord with unending joy all the days of his life as he travelled continuously throughout the world to hold forth the Word of God. He reached thousands of people during his lifetime through his live presentations, numerous radio and television broadcasts, film and video classes, and recorded teachings. And countless others continue to enjoy and be enriched by his books and hundreds of hours of recorded works, many of which are available in the public domain. A detailed listing of his work, as well as more information about his life and teachings can be found at Eternally Blessed (www.eternallyblessed.org).
Excerpt from 273 Comparison of Epistles and Gospels (02/14/65)
In order for the Word of God to live abundantly within men and women, we will have to rightly-divide it and have the true Word. To the end we rightly-divide the Word of truth we will have the true Word. To the end we wrongly divide it, we will have error. And as I have taught my people all over the nations of the world, that sincerity is no guarantee for truth. It is wonderful to be sincere, but sincerity alone is not enough. We have to have The Word of God.
In my life and in my ministry, one of the things that disturbed me for many years was the place of the Gospels in relationship to the Church Epistles, as well as the Old Testament. I could not harmonize, I could not put together, the record of the Gospels with the record that was set in the Epistles for instance, the Church Epistles. Nor could I reconcile it with the Old Testament. And so for me, the Gospels stood out like a sore thumb. Very wonderful. Tremendous. But I could not put it together.
Tonight, by the grace of the Lord, we want to see the relationship of the four Gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, to the Church Epistles. I believe that the greatest literary miracle of ages is the four, the presentation of the four Gospels. The thing that astounds me about the four Gospels is that they were written much later than the death, the resurrection and the ascension of Christ; many years after Paul had already received the revelation as to what the church of the body really was.
Take for instance the Gospel of Luke. Luke was a companion of the Apostle Paul. Right? In the book of Acts it says how ’we traveled’ here, there and yonder. Luke traveled with the Apostle Paul, and therefore the teaching of the Apostle Paul was heard by who? By Luke. And the remarkable thing is that there is not one thing of the Pauline revelation in the Gospel of Luke. And yet Luke wrote it after he had heard everything that Paul had to share and teach, yet there is not one word of the revelation that was given to Paul in the Gospel of Luke.
You see why I used to question these things. Why I thought them through with my reason and with my mind. Because after all, if you and I traveled together for two or three years, and you were writing a book, 9 chances out of 10, not even 9 out of 10, 10 out of 10, would you include some of the things that we had talked about and fellowshipped, and worked out in the last three years in your book. Sure you would. And yet when it comes to the Gospel of Luke, there was not one record, there isn’t one great truth in the Gospel of Luke which we see manifested in the Church Epistles.
Secondly, take Mark. Mark was very beloved of the Apostle Paul. Late in the ministry of the Apostle Paul, he writes back to a certain city, I forget now where it is. It is written in the Book of Acts. He writes back to that city, if I remember correctly, or is it in Timothy? Someplace, and he says that John Mark, when Timothy comes, he should salute John Mark or something like this. I forget the essence of it. But the point is that Mark was a real friend and beloved companion of the Apostle Paul. And yet the Gospel of Mark has not one, not one of the great revelations that were given to the Apostle Paul, in it.
Take John. John the great scholar. He had heard of the ministry of Paul. He had what he taught. The Epistles that Paul had written had been in circulation for 25 to 30 years, and yet in the Gospel of John, there is no specific reference to any of the great revelation which was given to the Apostle Paul. With the exception of perhaps two little indications which I will cover later on tonight.
You see, these men - Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John - writing many, many years after the ascension of the Lord Jesus Christ, and yet not including anything of the greatness of the revelation which is recorded in Romans, Corinthians, Galatians, and Ephesians, and so forth, this was what I could not understand.
Until one day I learned from 2 Peter chapter 1, verse 21, that…
2 Peter 1:21
Romans 10:9, 10
2 Corinthians 5:18, 19
1 John 3:2
John 14:12, 13
Ephesians 1:3, 6, 7, 9, 11, 13; 2:19