Why did John the Babtist say he was not Elijah but Jesus said he was Elijah?
In the Gospel of John, John the Baptist was asked by a delegation of priests if he was Elijah. To which, he replied "I am not (John 1:21)."
In Mathew, Jesus states..." and if you are willing to believe their message, John is Elijah, whose coming was predicted. "
-Matthew 11:14 (GNT)
I'm a believer, but I don't understand this and was hoping a biblical scholar might be able to help. Thank you.
- Anonymous9 years agoFavorite Answer
Notice the way it is worded in the NIV and in God's Word, here:
John was not Elijah himself, in person (as we can see from the transfiguration, during which the *actual, historical* Elijah appeared and conversed with Jesus). Instead, John the Baptist was ""the prophesied Elijah** - the "Elijah" that had been promised, rather than historic Elijah reincarnated or come down as a spirit from Heaven.
Here is the prophecy in the Old Testament:
I agree that this is a confusing issue, but I *do* think it is clear that Jesus was teaching, "John the Baptist is the 'Elijah' that was promised by Malachi." while John the Baptist was teaching, "I am not the reincarnation of Elijah".
- GrahamLv 79 years ago
Not the same person as Elijah, but rather the "Elijah" for His age, to usher in the Kingdom - Elijah as a type rather than as the self same being.
- Anonymous9 years ago
John was not a resurrected Elijah, but he had took on Elijah's prophetic role - confronting sin and pointing people to God.
- 9 years ago
John was not Elijah in person, but he was Elijah in type - preaching repentance before the oncoming judgment. Blessings.
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- DuckyLv 79 years ago
John was not literally Elijah..he took on Elijah's role.... Elijah's second coming is in revelations....
- 9 years ago
is that a JW bible that you got over there son?