Resurrection Prophecy


Does the Old Testament contain a prediction that Christ/Messiah will rise from the dead? If so where?


In 1 Cor 15:3 Paul gave one of the clearest descriptions of the Gospel to be found anywhere. “For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures.” Having written that before the New Testament existed, he had to be referring to the Old Testament. Psalm 22 hints of this, especially in verses 21-22, and Jesus pointed to Jonah’s time in the whale (Jonah 1:17) as a model of His resurrection (Matt. 12:39-40). But the clearest reference is in Isaiah 53.

Isaiah 53:10-11 reads, “Yet it was the LORD’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer, and though the LORD makes his life a guilt offering, he will see his offspring and prolong his days, and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand. After the suffering of his soul, he will see the light of life and be satisfied; by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many, and he will bear their iniquities.

Paul probably got the three-day time frame from Jonah 1:17 and Psalm 16:10 which says, “You will not abandon me to the grave, nor will you let your Holy One see decay.” In Jewish thinking, the spirit hovered around a dead body for three days before leaving. On the fourth day the spirit left and body began to decompose. This is what made the calling forth of Lazarus so dramatic. He’d been in the grave for four days and his body had already begun to decompose. (John 11:39)