You’ve probably seen a red letter Bible. In fact, you probably own one. A red-letter Bible places all of Jesus’ words in prominent red letters in order to stand out from all the other recorded words in Scripture. The red letter Bible is one of the many modern introductions to published Bibles along with the chapter/verse breaks and chapter/paragraph headings.

Jesus was the Son of God. It’s understandable that reading Jesus’ words in our red letter Bible might garner special attention or cause one to sit up and take notice. While there’s nothing wrong with that, it is interesting that He never wrote anything down. That’s a fact. Imagine the homage that might be paid to a Gospel or Epistle written in Jesus’ own hand? There could be some other unintended consequences. A few of these are called out in this, “The Problem with Red Letter Bibles” from the Gentleman Theologian. But we don’t really need to rely on man’s wisdom for this question…

How Scripture answers "Are Jesus’ words (red letter Bible) more important than other Scripture?"

The words of Scripture are in fact the words of God – all of them, regardless of who spoke them1,2,4,6,7,8. Jesus or the apostles8 were not speaking or teaching something different from person to person. They all were united in and messengers of the “all truth” of God the Father. It was the same with God’s prophets7 who spoke God’s literal word. If you are, or want to be, a disciple of Jesus you must continue in God’s word regardless of who spoke it or where it’s recorded in our our Old Testaments2,3,4,5,7. Jesus Himself2 removes any doubt that we are to give special weight to who spoke them.

Answer built on scripture-blocks below

For I have given them the words that you gave me, and they have received them and have come to know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me.

God gave words to Jesus who in turn gave them to his disciples. They received them, resulting in them knowing “truth” and believing “that you sent me.”

Jesus’ prayer in his final hours on earth is sometimes referred to as the “High Priestly Prayer.” It is offered in the upper room on the night of His betrayal.
Scripture-block application to this question

Jesus Himself acknowledges that the words He spoke were from God. He was, in a sense, the conduit and passed the words on to the apostles.

!! scripture-block context extra important here !!

In His prayer to the Father, Jesus further states, “I have given them your word” (vs 14) and goes on to say that all future believers will believe “through their word”2.

I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.

I [Jesus] don’t pray for these only [disciples, particularly apostles], but for all that will believe in Me through their word.  In order that all may be one, just as You, the Father are in Me and I in You, that they will be in Us so that the world might believe that You have sent Me.

Jesus’ prayer in his final hours on earth is sometimes referred to as the “High Priestly Prayer.” He has been praying for the apostles (vss 6-18) stating that one was lost to Satan (vs 12) and that “I have given them your word” (vs 14).
Scripture-block application to this question

Jesus prays for all those that will believe in Him because of “their word” (the apostles’).

So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the traditions that you were taught by us, either by our spoken word or by our letter.

Therefore brethren, remember and continue in the traditions (teachings) of the apostles (“us”), whether what we spoke or sent by letter.

Paul’s second letter to the church in Thessalonica where he is warning them about coming destructive forces to the faithful and letters that even seem like they may have come from the apostles (vs 2).  At issue here is the false teaching that Jesus has already come (vs 2).  Those that succumb to such teaching are possibly even helped by God who “sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false,” (vs 11) because they take “pleasure in unrighteousness” (vs 13).

Scripture-block application to this question

Paul refers to the things they had been taught as from the apostles.

For it has been reported to me by Chloe’s people that there is quarreling among you, my brothers. What I mean is that each one of you says, I follow Paul, or I follow Apollos, or I follow Cephas, or I follow Christ. Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?

I [Paul] have heard from Chloe’s people that quarrels are happening based on individuals claiming allegiance to Paul, Apollos, Peter or Christ. But Christ is not/should not be divided in this way. Christ was crucified. They are baptized into Christ.

Paul is writing to the church in Corinth dealing with several serious issues throughout the letter, but here dealing with divisions among them.

Scripture-block application to this question

Paul is rebuking those that elevate any preacher/teacher of the gospel above another, even listing Christ. Obviously, Jesus Christ is who they all followed and taught, but the message was one.

And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.

Christians were devoted to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship (collective) activities of breaking bread and prayer.

Immediately following the mass conversion (3,000) on the Day of Pentecost, the saints began meeting together and established what became known as the church in Jerusalem (Acts 8:1, 11:22).

Scripture-block application to this question

Jesus has ascended to heaven at this point, yet it’s not “Jesus’ words” or “Jesus’ teaching” that’s emphasized by the author, Luke. Instead, he calls it the “apostles’ teaching”.

!! scripture-block context extra important here !!

This is especially poignant since Jesus’ ascension was “not many days” prior (Acts 1:5) and his absence was still very much felt by the disciples.

Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him. Do not add to his words, lest he rebuke you and you be found a liar.

All the words of God prove true and are the defense of the righteous. Don’t add to His words, or God will refuse you as a liar.

A proverb of Agur, son of Jakeh (vs 1), who is otherwise unknown in the rest of Scripture.

Scripture-block application to this question

It is in “every word of God” (and God only) that truth is found.

So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.
You are no longer set apart, but now are fellow citizens with the saints of God’s household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets. Jesus, Himself is the chief cornerstone, in whom the entire building joins together and grows into a holy temple in the Lord.  In Christ, you also are adding together to form a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.

Paul is pointing out to the Ephesians and Gentile Christians, that though they were at one time “called the uncircumcision by the circumcised” (vs 11), they are now part of the inheritance in Christ as a result of the “peace” that has been preached (vs 18).

Scripture-block application to this question

Jesus’ words/message are central and critical, but just as any foundation cannot exist without a cornerstone (and vis-a-versa), “saints and members” of God’s household (the church universal) cannot exist without the words of the “apostles and prophets” (e.g. the Bible).

In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do and teach, until the day when he was taken up, after he had given commands through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen.

In the first book [Gospel of Luke], Theophilus, I [Luke] presented all that Jesus began to do and teach up until the day He ascended [to heaven] and after He had given commands through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom He had appointed.

Luke’s “part 2” account to Theophilus, where he opens with a brief summary (vss 1-11) that recaps/overlaps with the ending of the “part 1” (Luke 24:36-53).

Jesus, with His apostles (vs 2), is reminding them of the “promise of the Father” (“the Helper”) that He first told them about in the upper room before His crucifixion (John 14:15-17, 16:7-14). He is also referring back to the same thing John the Baptist had originally proclaimed, “I baptize you with water, but he who is mightier than I is coming, the strap of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.” (Luke 3:16)

This is just before He ascends into heaven (vs 9) and the day of Pentecost (chapter 2).

Scripture-block application to this question

Luke opens his second volume by saying that his first was only what “Jesus began to do and teach”. This implies that the book of Acts is a continuation of Jesus’ teaching, even though it was by proxy through the apostles1,2.

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