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A gospel (meaning "good news", comparable to the Greek εὐαγγέλιον, evangelion[1]) is a written account of the career and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth. The word originally meant the Christian message itself, but in the 2nd century it came to be used for the books in which the message was set out.[Notes 1] The four gospels of the New Testament — Matthew, Mark, Luke and John — are almost our only source of information on Jesus, and thus occupy a uniquely important place in Christianity.

They were all written in the period between c. 70 AD and the end of the 1st century, by anonymous authors, and stand at the end of a process of oral and written tradition that began on, or even before, the death of Jesus. For various reasons modern scholars are cautious of relying on them uncritically,nevertheless, they do provide a good idea of the public career of Jesus, and critical study can attempt to distinguish the original ideas of Jesus from those of the later authors.

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