If Jesus brought everlasting life and Abraham died before the coming of Jesus (and in fact before Judaism), would we therefore expect to see Abraham in heaven? What passages in the bible direct us to an answer?
Jesus Himself said Abraham was in heaven, in the parable of The Rich Man and Lazarus:
Luke 16:19-31 NIV1984 (I have highlighted the six references to Abraham.)
“There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and lived in luxury every day. At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores 21 and longing to eat what fell from the rich man’s table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores.
“The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried. In hell, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side. So he called to him, ‘Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.’
“But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony. And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.’
“He answered, ‘Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my father’s house, for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’
“Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.’
“‘No, father Abraham,’ he said, ‘but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.’
“He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’”
It's in the first two of those that we find our answer:
What does the Scripture say? Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness. (Romans 4:3, NIV)
Consider Abraham: He believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness (Galations 3:6)
Abraham has received righteousness; in other words, he is made holy, or sin-free; he is saved by his faith.
God chose Abraham and made him blameless. Gen 17-1 . Before Jesus came the People of the old testament were more intimate with God , Jesus was sacrificed as an atonement for the world's sins, not just for God's chosen people. Sins in the old testament were covered by the blood of bulls and goats. Jesus's blood covers today's sin. God saved Abraham by making him blameless.