People often ask about what happens after death. The only place to find truthful answers is in the scriptures where God, our Creator, tells us answers to our questions.
There are several occasions where we are told by God, graves opened. And God doesn’t say the graves opened and stop there but God tells us bodies came out of the graves. I am not talking about Lazarus being raised from the dead or Samuel being called up from the grave. I am talking about people who have died and their body buried, their grave opening.
The New Testament mentions graves opening several times. When you study these verses you discover when a person dies and is buried, at some point, they come out of their grave. When you filter people into groups of the unbelievers and the believers, you find their graves open at different times.
Believers are called “saints” in the scriptures. Unbelievers are called “dead”, “lost”, and unbelievers among other names.
There appears to be three times where graves are opened in scripture. What is significant about this is:
~ the number 3 is a divine number
~ means after people die, there is life
~ we have more than our earthly body
Looking at the times the graves opened helps us understand after death, what then. But looking at the graves opening also helps us understand doctrine, “teaching” of Scripture.
You see, when Jesus was crucified, some people standing there thought Jesus was calling for Elijah / Elias. Jesus was not. And why would these people think that? These people knew the scriptures. They knew the Old Testament says Elijah would come (again).
Malachi 4:5-6 KJV “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord :
 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.”
This is why many believers say Elijah is one of the two prophets who come during the Great Tribulation. But Jesus was not calling for Elijah on the cross. And notice what happens when Jesus dies on the cross.
Matthew 27:46-54 KJV “And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?
 Some of them that stood there, when they heard that , said, This man calleth for Elias.
 And straightway one of them ran, and took a spunge, and filled it with vinegar, and put it on a reed, and gave him to drink.
 The rest said, Let be, let us see whether Elias will come to save him.
 Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost.
 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;
 And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,
 And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.
 Now when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God.”
Notice graves were opened. Imagine standing there witnessing graves opening? Notice what graves opened? All graves did not open, just certain graves opened.
You can understand why the centurion and others “feared greatly”. Then we read about the resurrection of Jesus.
Matthew 28:1-8 KJV “In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre.
 And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it.
 His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow:
 And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men .
 And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.
 He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.
 And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and, behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: lo, I have told you.
 And they departed quickly from the sepulchre with fear and great joy; and did run to bring his disciples word.”
And we will pick this up from here next time. Until next time.