“Four Camera Angles…?!”

Welcome to another of this year’s Doug’s 12 Days of Christmas, at the intersection of the song, the children’s game, tradition, culture, and Christ-mas. If you’ve missed a few, check your in-box from yesterday, or ping [email protected]. Today. “Four…”

On the 4th day of Christmas, the kids would have gotten a breath after the “Fiiiiiiiiiiive golden rings,” and started on the songs home stretch. As with each of the other days, the “calling birds” part of the game or rhyme wasn’t as important as the “Four,” in this case symbolizing the miracle of the Four Gospels.

I say “miracle” because there are four eyewitness accounts, each with a different perspective from a different author, but all in agreement to give a full perspective.

Matthew wrote with Jewish people in mind, as he often pointed out how Jesus’ amazing life and work fulfilled Old Testament predictions from centuries before. Mark, who was mentored by Peter in Rome, is the only one not written by one of the eleven faithful disciples, but from Peter’s oral narrative. Dr. Luke aimed to give an orderly account with Europeans, Asians, and other marginalized outsiders in mind. John’s account reflects his tender relationship with Jesus and others, gives more space to Jesus’ more intimate teachings and moments with the disciples, and has fewer stories but longer versions of Jesus’ public miracles and teachings.

To understand how totally kewl this is, perhaps think about all of these NFL games that stop so that the referees can review the instant replay. The bigger the game, the more camera angles they have: each with a different perspective, all aligned and integrated into one whole picture of what really happened. Was the knee down before a fumble? Did the foot make it down in-bounds? Did the ball cross the goal line? …The picture above shows a play that is remembered as Glorious by Rams fans and Tragedy by Saints fans, as there possibly should have been an interference penalty called on my beloved Rams but the refs missed it. The rule has been changed so that today that play could be reversed and the mistake eliminated. That reminds me of how Jesus’ death on the cross (we’ll talk about that at Easter time) eliminates all of our mistakes, at least in Heaven’s eyes.

All four gospels – all four camera angles – agree on the simplicity of the message: Son of God. Resurrected. Believe. Follow. Love. Pass it on. Come again, Lord Jesus. That’s it! (And Jesus said so in Matthew 22:34-40.) And they agree that Jesus’ style was like a generous benefactor or helpful performance coach, though He certainly had referee power to throw penalty flags at those who didn’t follow Him, hurt others, and especially those who misused their religious leadership authority.

If you’re considering becoming more Biblically literate in 2023, I’ve got two suggestions. First, don’t start by reading the Old Testament, but start with the book of John. Second, you could join one of our seven-week Zoom groups that start in January, just one hour of a gospel passage to read, learn about, and discuss with others.

Thanks for joining me on this ride, thanks for your kind emails and texts, and see you tomorrow for “Three…” -Doug

12th Day…
…Good morning aviators, 12 points of the Creed.
11th Day…
…Baker’s miracle, 11 faithful disciples/learners.
10th Day…
…Ten Commandments, actually just two.
9th Day…
…Laker Girls, 9 fruits of the Spirit.
8th Day…
…The Sermon on the Mount, 8 Beatitudes.
7th Day…
…Swans are graceful, as are those who use their Gifts for good
6th Day…
…He Created the first six days; Then a Real Rest.
5th Day…
…Belt it out! The First Fiiive Books of the Bible.
4th Day…
….Four perspectives/camera angles of Christ.
3rd Day…
2nd Day…
1st Day…


Brian Wells, Speaker
VP, CEO Forum
Co-Founder, Crossroads Church

Wednesday, Jan. 11, Rookwood Pub
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