"And the LORD heard the voice of Elijah; and the soul of the child came into him again, and he revived" (I Kings 17:22).
This is the first of eight specific instances recorded in the Bible when a dead person was miraculously restored to life, and the departed soul (presumably detained for a while in Sheol or in Paradise, depending on whether the event took place before or after the resurrection of Christ) returned to its body. One was later accomplished through Elisha (II Kings 4:32-36); and one at Elisha's tomb (II Kings 13:21); one each through Peter and Paul (Acts 9:40; 20:9-12); and three through Christ (Matthew 9:18-25; Luke 7:12-15; John 11:43-44).
These were all "resuscitations," of course, rather than true resurrections, and each of these people eventually died again. One other person who may have died was the prophet Jonah who, while his body was entombed in the belly of the great fish, testified later that he had actually been in Sheol (translated "hell") after his "soul" had "fainted within me." There he prayed, and God "brought up my life from corruption" (Jonah 2:2, 6-7).
Jonah's experience was, of course, a type of the future death and resurrection of Christ (Matthew 12:40). But His miraculous return to life was not, like the others, a temporary matter, but was the first true resurrection. "Now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept" (I Corinthians 15:20). He could assert "I am He that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore" (Revelation 1:18).
He was the first, but not the last! "Because I live," He said, "ye shall live also" (John 14:19). "For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again . . ." (I Thessalonians 4:14), ". . . when He shall appear, we shall be like Him . . ." (I John 3:2). HMM