Belief in the eventual resurrection of the dead is a fundamental belief of traditional Judaism. It was a belief that distinguished the Pharisees (intellectual ancestors of Rabbinical Judaism) from the Sadducees. The Sadducees rejected the concept, because it is not explicitly mentioned in the Torah. The Pharisees found the concept implied in certain verses.
Belief in resurrection of the dead is one of Rambam’s 13 Principles of Faith. The second blessing of the Shemoneh Esrei prayer, which is recited three times daily, contains several references to resurrection. (Note: the Reform movement, which apparently rejects this belief, has rewritten the second blessing accordingly).
Passages in the Hebrew Bible traditionally interpreted as referring to resurrection include:
- Ezekiel’s vision of the valley of dry bones brought to restoration as a living army, which is commonly taken to be a metaphorical prophecy that the house of Israel would one day be gathered from the nations, out of exile, to live in the land of Israel once more:
"He said to me, 'Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they come to life.”’ So I prophesied as He commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they came to life, and stood on their feet, an exceedingly great army. Then He said to me, "Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel; behold, they say, ‘Our bones are dried up, and our hope has perished. We are completely cut off.’ "Therefore prophesy, and say to them, 'Thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I will open your graves and cause you to come up out of your graves, My people; and I will bring you into the land of Israel.” (Ezekiel 37:9-12)
- Samuel - “The LORD kills and makes alive; He brings down to Sheol and raises up.” (1 Samuel 2:6)
- The prophet Elijah raises a young boy from death (1 Kings 17:17-24)
- Similarly, Elisha raises the son of the Shunammite woman (2 Kings 4:32-37); this was the very same child whose birth he previously foretold (2 Kings 4:8-16)
- Job - “Even after my skin is destroyed, Yet from my flesh I shall see God” (Job 19:26)
- Isaiah - “Your dead will live; Their corpses will rise. You who lie in the dust, awake and shout for joy, For your dew is as the dew of the dawn, And the earth will give birth to the departed spirits.” (Isaiah 26:19)
- Daniel’s vision, where a mysterious angelic figure tells Daniel, “Many of those who sleep in the dust of the ground will awake, these to everlasting life, but the others to disgrace and everlasting contempt.” (Daniel 12:2)
JewFAQs, Olam Ha-Ba: The Afterlife - Resurrection and Reincarnation
Wikipedia, “Resurrection” article