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Bible Commentaries

The Gospels Compared

Matthew 4

Verses 1-11

Satan temps Jesus in the Desert
Matthew 4:1-11 Mark 1:12-13 Luke 4:1-13
Matthew 4:1 Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. Mark 1:12 And immediately the Spirit driveth him into the wilderness. Luke 4:1 And Jesus being full of the Holy Ghost returned from Jordan, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness,
Matthew 4:2 And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred. Mark 1:13 And he was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted of Satan; and was with the wild beasts; and the angels ministered unto him. Luke 4:2 Being forty days tempted of the devil. And in those days he did eat nothing: and when they were ended, he afterward hungered.


Matthew 4:3 And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. Luke 4:3 And the devil said unto him, If thou be the Son of God, command this stone that it be made bread.
Matthew 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. Luke 4:4 And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.
Matthew 4:5 Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple, Luke 4:9 And he brought him to Jerusalem, and set him on a pinnacle of the temple, and said unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down from hence:
Matthew 4:6 And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in [their] hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone. Luke 4:10 For it is written, He shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee: Luke 4:11 And in [their] hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.
Matthew 4:7 Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God. Luke 4:12 And Jesus answering said unto him, It is said, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.
Matthew 4:8 Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; Luke 4:5 And the devil, taking him up into an high mountain, shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.
Matthew 4:9 And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, Luke 4:6 And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it.
if thou wilt fall down and worship me. Luke 4:7 If thou therefore wilt worship me, all shall be thine.
Matthew 4:10 Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve. Luke 4:8 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.


Matthew 4:11 Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him. Mark 1:13 And he was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted of Satan; and was with the wild beasts; and the angels ministered unto him. Luke 4:13 And when the devil had ended all the temptation, he departed from him for a season.
Most biblical scholars believe that Matthew was concerned more with the order of events in this story because of his use of words like then (Matthew 4:5, Greek tote) and “again” (Matthew 4:8, Greek palin). These two specific adverbs seem to indicate a more sequential order of the temptations. Luke links the events by using the Greek words kai and de (Matthew 4:2, Matthew 4:5-Joshua :, translated and ). [The NKJV’s translation of kai as then in Luke 4:5 is incorrect. It should be translated simply “and” (cf. ASV, KJV, NASV, and RSV).] Similar to the English word “and” not having specific chronological implications, neither do the Greek words kai and de (Richards, 1993, p. 230). In short, Luke’s account of the temptations of Jesus is arranged topically (or possibly climactically), whereas Matthew’s account seems to be arranged chronologically.

Verses 12-17

Jesus preaches in Galilee
Matt 4:12-17 Mark 1:14-15 Luke 4:14-15 John 4:43-45
Matthew 4:12 Now when Jesus had heard that John was cast into prison, he departed into Galilee; Mark 1:14 Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, Luke 4:14 And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee: John 4:43 Now after two days he departed thence, and went into Galilee.



John 4:44 For Jesus himself testified, that a prophet hath no honour in his own country.
Matthew 4:13 And leaving Nazareth, he came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is upon the sea coast, in the borders of Zabulon and Nephthalim:
and there went out a fame of him through all the region round about. John 4:45 Then when he was come into Galilee, the Galilaeans received him, having seen all the things that he did at Jerusalem at the feast: for they also went unto the feast.
Matthew 4:14 That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying,


Matthew 4:15 The land of Zabulon, and the land of Nephthalim, [by] the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles;


Matthew 4:16 The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up. Mark 1:14 preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, Luke 4:15 And he taught in their synagogues, being glorified of all.
Matthew 4:17 From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. Mark 1:15 And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.

Verses 18-22

Four fishermen follow Jesus
Matthew 4:18-22 Mark 1-16-20
Matthew 4:18 And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. Mark 1:16 Now as he walked by the sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers.
Matthew 4:19 And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men. Mark 1:17 And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after me, and I will make you to become fishers of men.
Matthew 4:20 And they straightway left [their] nets, and followed him. Mark 1:18 And straightway they forsook their nets, and followed him.
Matthew 4:21 And going on from thence, he saw other two brethren, James [the son] of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets; Mark 1:19 And when he had gone a little further thence, he saw James the [son] of Zebedee, and John his brother, who also were in the ship mending their nets.
and he called them. Mark 1:20 And straightway he called them:
Matthew 4:22 And they immediately left the ship and their father, and followed him. and they left their father Zebedee in the ship with the hired servants, and went after him.

Verses 23-25

Jesus preaches throughout Galilee
Matthew 4:23-25 Mark 1:35-39 Luke 4:42-44
Matthew 4:23 And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people. Mark 1:35 And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed. Luke 4:42 And when it was day, he departed and went into a desert place:
Matthew 4:24 And his fame went throughout all Syria: and they brought unto him all sick people that were taken with divers diseases and torments, and those which were possessed with devils, and those which were lunatick, and those that had the palsy; and he healed them.

Matthew 4:25 And there followed him great multitudes of people from Galilee, and [from] Decapolis, and [from] Jerusalem, and [from] Judaea, and [from] beyond Jordan. Mark 1:36 And Simon and they that were with him followed after him. Mark 1:37 And when they had found him, they said unto him, All [men] seek for thee. and the people sought him, and came unto him, and stayed him, that he should not depart from them.

Mark 1:38 And he said unto them, Let us go into the next towns, that I may preach there also: for therefore came I forth. Luke 4:43 And he said unto them, I must preach the kingdom of God to other cities also: for therefore am I sent.

Mark 1:39 And he preached in their synagogues throughout all Galilee, and cast out devils. Luke 4:44 And he preached in the synagogues of Galilee.
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Bibliographical Information
"Commentary on Matthew 4". "The Gospels Compared". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/tgc/matthew-4.html. 2014.