Chapter XVII.—First the Worse, Then the Better.
“In like manner, the combination with respect to Elias, which behoved to have come, has been willingly put off to another time, having determined to enjoy it conveniently hereafter. 926 Wherefore, also, he who was among those born of woman came first; then he who was among p. 232 the sons of men came second. It were possible, following this order, to perceive to what series Simon belongs, who came before me to the Gentiles, and to which I belong who have come after him, and have come in upon him as light upon darkness, as knowledge upon ignorance, as healing upon disease. And thus, as the true Prophet has told us, a false prophet must first come from some deceiver; and then, in like manner, after the removal of the holy place, the true Gospel must be secretly sent abroad for the rectification of the heresies that shall be. After this, also, towards the end, Antichrist must first come, and then our Jesus must be revealed to be indeed the Christ; and after this, the eternal light having sprung up, all the things of darkness must disappear.
In this sentence the text is probably corrupted. The general meaning seems to be, that he does not enter fully at present into the subject of Elias, or John the Baptist, and the Christ, the greatest among the sons of men, coming after, but that he will return to the subject on a fitting occasion.