4. Reincarnation was part of the Jewish dogmas, being taught under the name of resurrection. Only the Sadducees, who believed that everything ended with death, did not accept the idea of reincarnation. Jewish ideas on this point, as on many others, were not clearly defined because they had only vague and incomplete notions with regard to the soul and its connection with the body.
They believed that man could live again without knowing exactly the manner by which this could happen. They used the name resurrection for what Spiritism more correctly calls reincarnation, Resurrection presupposes a return to the same physical body, whereas science demonstrates that this is materially impossible, especially when that same body has decomposed and long since been dispersed and reabsorbed. Reincarnation is the return of a soul, or Spirit, to physical life in another body which has been newly formed for it, and which has nothing to do with the previous one. The word 'resurrection' can be applied to Lazarus but not to Elias, nor to the other prophets. If, according to their belief, John the Baptist was Elias, then the body of John could not have been the body of Elias because John was seen as a child and his parents were known. John then could be Elias reincarnated but not resurrected.