Matthew 11:12-14

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Matthew 11:12-14: And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force. For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John. And if you are willing to receive it, he is Elijah who is to come.
Matthew 17:12-13: But I say to you that Elijah has come already, and they did not know him but did to him whatever they wished. Likewise the Son of Man is also about to suffer at their hands.” Then the disciples understood that He spoke to them of John the Baptist.

John 1:21: And they asked him, “What then? Are you Elijah?” He said, “I am not.” “Are you the Prophet?” And he answered, “No.”

Matthew says that John the Baptist was Elijah, but John says that John the Baptist was not Elijah.

(Summary: Matthew 11:12-14 and Matthew 17:12-13 are misinterpreted)

Please consider Luke 1:13-17: "[…] and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth. For he will be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink. He will also be filled with the Holy Spirit, seven from his mother’s womb. And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God. He will also go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, ‘to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children,’ and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” "

When you also look at this passage it is reasonable to conclude that no contradiction is present. I think there has merely been a misinterpretation of Matthew 11:12-14 and Matthew 17:12-13. I believe that Matthew is indicating the nature of John the Baptist - that his actions are like those of Elijah; having "the spirit and power of Elijah".

I agree that John the Baptist is not Elijah, but he is just like him in terms of his nature.


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