My Old Testament professor, Dr. Judy Fentress-Williams, has written a piece about the Exodus that describes different perspectives on the text, which she calls "remixes." It reminded me of a metaphor I came up with several years ago, that I've been meaning to put in print for some time.
The Gospels are four different recordings of the "Song of Jesus":
MARK: The live version … immediate, personal, urgent, direct, and full of energy.
MATTHEW: The acoustic version … intimate, traditional, speaking to those who already understand the tradition and style from which the song was born.
LUKE: The electric version … energized, fresh, upbeat, radio-friendly, and intended for worldwide distribution. It seeks to draw a broader group of people into its catchy message.
JOHN: The extended dance remix … it's still the same song, but it's quite removed from the original. It is no less vital and creative for this fact. It will appeal to yet another audience.