The Graves Were Opened
Will Old Testament believers be resurrected with a heavenly hope?
Watchtower answer: No, Old Testament believers have an earthly hope. Only the 144,000 (“the only ones who are born-again”) have a heavenly hope.
Bible answer: Yes! Christ was the firstfruits (1 Cor 15:23) of anyone being resurrected in a glorified body, but immediately following Christ’s resurrection Old Testament saints (saved ones) were bodily resurrected and came out of the graves as a testimony to the glory of God.
Matt 27:50 Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. 51 And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent; 52 And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose, 53 And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.
This event is quite a wonder and must have amazed the people that witnessed it happening. It leaves every Bible reader with some questions that are unanswered, but also with a blessed assurance of a grand and glorious victory that awaits every true born-again believer.
According to scripture, Old Testament Saints do have a heavenly hope:
Matt 8:11 And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.
Luke 13:28 There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when ye shall see Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets, in the kingdom of God, and you yourselves thrust out.
Heb 11:16 But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.
All people will be resurrected, some to eternal damnation and some to eternal life. There is no second chance group in between, just life or damnation. No one can see the Kingdom of God (whether in heaven or earth) unless he has truly been born-again. Scriptures makes this point absolutely clear. Please don’t be like Eve and let some “anointed ones” take this truth from you. The Bible is the only authority for faith and truth, and it is God’s gift to all people. Those who ask God for wisdom and understanding will receive it, and He will make the simple wise and show them His great salvation. God wants you to trust Him, not any religion or organization.
Salvation (deliverance from eternal death to possession of eternal life) is not in any religion or religious organization. Salvation is in a person, and that person is the true Jesus of the Bible, the Eternal Son of God.
1John 5:12 He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.
John 8:24 I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.
John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again (born of God), he cannot see the kingdom of God.