The Problem of Apparent Chronological Contradictions in the Synoptics
A quick glance at a side-by-side ordering of the gospel accounts is enough to reveal how closely the Synoptics follow each other as they recount the life and teaching of Christ. The relationship between these accounts has been, on the one hand, an assurance to believers of the historical validity of the Gospels. On the other hand, such comparisons have given rise to a multitude of questions about which Gospel was written first, whether subsequent authors borrowed from each other, and why there are differences in wording, style and order as the authors report the same events. All these issues form the Synoptic problem.