Everyone Has Time to Read the Gospels

Have you ever read the four Gospels:
Matthew, Mark, Luke, & John?

A Papyrus Manuscript (P66) of the Beginning of John's Gospel.

A Papyrus Manuscript (P66) of the Beginning of John

People say that they don’t have time to read the four most important books in human history, but the truth is that everyone does. It is simply a question of our priorities.

Given the average person’s reading speed and the number of words in each book, about how long does it take to read the Gospels?

Matthew:  1 hour, 14 minutes
Mark:  46 minutes
Luke:  1 hour, 18 minutes
John:  1 hour, 3 minutes

The Four Gospels:  4 hours, 21 minutes

For comparison, you can read:

If we have had the time for any of the things above, what excuse will we have for someday appearing before the Lord Jesus without having read his Gospels? Put first things first, and take time today to begin reading his four Gospels.

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5 Responses to “Everyone Has Time to Read the Gospels”

  1. Kelso Says:

    So good you posted this. I hope many take it to heart. My teacher always asked people when they sought his advice about this or that Catholic book if they have read the four Gospels. If the answer was No, or not for a long time, he would tell them to put away Maria d’Greda or whomever and read the Gospels. He himself had memorized them.

  2. Fred Says:

    Reading it is one thing, but trying to interpret it takes a lot longer.

    • Bob in Maryland Says:

      You’re right. It takes a lifetime. I’ve been reading the Gospels for maybe 55 years now (in other words, ever since I learned how to read), and still gain new insight each time I go back to them (which is pretty much daily).

  3. profling Says:

    It’s too bad most V2 priests don’t use the homily to comment on them. The Eastern churches do a better job at that.

  4. TeaPot562 Says:

    Rather than trying to speed read through this,

    Better to borrow a copy of Barclay’s commentary and review at least for each of the parables of Jesus. This is specially valuable for Matthew’s teaching of the Lord’s Prayer (Our Father).
    Barclay is no use when Jesus is giving the discourse on The Bread of Life, as Barclay, a Presbyterian, does not follow Catholic teaching on the Holy Eucharist.
    You can read Mark in a fairly short time, but the account of Jesus’s suffering, death and Resurrection deserves meditation time, sometimes after each sentence.
    We have Eucharistic Adoration once a month in our parish. For this, I like to read Mark’s account of the Institution narrative, chapter 14, ending with Verse 26; then switch over to 1st Corinthians, chapter 11, verses 12-29 for a perspective from St. Paul.

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