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What Does the Bible Say About..Seeing the Dead?

When a person dies can you see them again? I guess people always say they have seen a deceased family member.


There is no evidence from the Bible that you can see dead people again until the resurrection at the end of the world. While there is nothing that directly says you can't, there are passages that seem to hint that the dead don't reappear on earth. In 1 Samuel 28, King Saul went to a woman who claimed to be a medium. He asked her to speak to Samuel, who was dead. When Samuel actually appeared to give Saul a message from God, the woman was genuinely shocked. It was almost like she had been faking it all her life, and couldn't believe that it was actually happening. That, of course, was a special case. In Luke 16 Jesus told the story of a rich man and a poor man named Lazarus. When the rich man, in torment, asked Abraham to send someone back to earth to warn his brothers, Abraham answered that even something as unusual as someone coming back from the dead would not convince them. Finally, after Jesus died, "the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose, and came out of the graves after his resurrection." (Matthew 27:52-53) It took something as powerful as the resurrection of Jesus to cause others to be raised as well. In all of these cases, though, it was a resurrection of the bodies of the dead. There is no evidence that the dead can come back in any other form, or that they could do so today. Some people under stress claim to "see" their dead relatives, but this often appears to be their own mind working, and not the dead actually appearing.