In the same way the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands." The commentary adds: "Then the disciples understood that he was talking to them about John the Baptist" (Matthew 17,12-13; see also Mark 9,12-13).
At first sight, it may seem that these verses imply the reincarnation of the prophet Elijah as John the Baptist.
When a group of people are working to fulfill a common goal, they are said to be in the same spirit.
Second, the text does not say that John the Baptist will go "in the soul of Elijah," but "in the spirit of Elijah." This means that John the Baptist and Elijah had the same "team spirit," not that one was the reincarnation of the other.
According to the classic theory of reincarnation, he might have been a cruel dictator who got the just reward for his bad deeds.
However, the apostles' question about the possibility of having sinned before birth should not necessarily be judged as indicating an existing belief in reincarnation.
Reincarnation according to Platonism Origen and Origenism Other early church fathers vs.
Both ideas of sinning before birth and the punishment for the parents' sins were wrong.
Jesus said: "Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life" (John 9,3). In the Gospel According to John Jesus said to Nicodemus: "I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again" (John 3,3).
Other Gospel passages that refer to Elijah and John the Baptist confirm that this text cannot teach reincarnation.
At the time John the Baptist began his public preaching, the priests in Jerusalem asked him about his identity: "Are you Elijah?