The question as to how the Gospels were put together has occupied scholars for the past two hundred years. It is generally thought that the accounts of Jesus and his acts were transmitted orally until they were written down in Greek between the years 70-100 A.D. This puts the Gospel of John at an even later date.
These assumptions are certainly no more than working hypotheses by means of which attempts have been made to establish the relationship of the Gospels to one another. At the beginning of the fifth century A.D. Augustine concluded that the order of writing of the Synoptic Gospels was Matthew, Mark and Luke, with Mark using Matthew, and Luke using both Matthew and Mark. The originator of the “synoptic” concept, J. J. Griesbach, considered Matthew’s Gospel to have been written first, Luke’s second and Mark’s last, with Luke using Matthew, and Mark using Matthew and Luke (see B. C. Butler, The Originality of St. Matthew [Cambridge, 1951]).