Godly Dreams?

 In the Bible, God speakes to His people in dreams (Genesis 46:2) .

But, also in the Bible God tells us not to not trust in what is seen and heard in our dreams, but rather in His Word. (Jeremiah 23: 25-28 )

So what are we to make of it when we believe that God has shown us something in a dream?

Could the visions, or small voices that come to us in the night, really be from God?

Are we to act on the basis of what we see in those dreams?

For example;  a young Christian woman has a dream where she moves to Uganda to set up a missionary outpost and also works with orphaned giraffes. Should she sell the studebaker and wing her way to Kampala? 

You keep having the same dream over and over where you are worshipping at a little Baptist church in a small town in Vermont.  You are quite happy there, and become the world’s seventh (notice the number 7?) largest distributor of maple chips. You have this dream at least once a week. Is it God? Could it be God?

Are these only manifestations of your unconscious mind, solely concoctions of events and images burned into your immagination, only to reappear in a dream?

Could these nightly visions be from the devil?

Have you ever acted upon the basis of something that came to you in a dream?

How did it turn out?

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27 Responses

  1. I refuse to answer on the grounds of incrimination…
    ~mp;)

  2. Oh come on, MistiPearl …

    you’re amongst friends!:D

  3. I’ll be quite honest about it.

    I dreamt that God was telling me to “get out of bed..and go get a job.”

  4. But then I decided that it was really ‘the devil’…and went back to sleep.

  5. I have had dreams where I’ve wondered if they were nudgings from God.

    I guess we can’t be SURE. But…we might step out in faith and utilize our Christian freedom if something is affecting us that deeply.

  6. I have some friends who have had dreams that certainly seemed to be from God. Honestly, what can you do or say about it as long as the dream doesn’t tell the person to do something that is clearly wrong in scripture? God speaks to us in many ways, I’m sure. But the biggest ways he speaks to us are through His Word, prayer and fellowship with other believers.

    Yesterday I had a dream that I was driving a car with a co-worker and while the car was still moving he jumped out to tell me that I was on my own. I managed to get over to the driver’s seat and tried to steer the car through a round-a-bout and the steering wheel had been replaced by a garden hose handle. What was God telling me? :)

  7. Roger,

    Yeah, I guess that makes sense “…as long as the dream doesn’t tell the person to do something that is clearly wrong in scripture?”

    I know some folks that say that without a doubt, God told me to not buy the yellow Volkswagon, but instead to buy the green Honda.

    That type of thing has never happened to me. I wish it had because the yellow Volkswagon turned out to be a real bomb.

    As far as your dream, Roger, I think that God is definitely telling you two things:

    1) Get a new friend

    2) Get a mechanic to check out that steering wheel!
    :D

    Thanks Roger!

  8. I wouldn’t be in ministry training now if it hadn’t been for a very determined sequence of dreams.

  9. D.P.,

    That’s exactly what I meant!

    God does use dreams for His own purposes, doesn’t he!?

    With Luther it was a fierce lightning storm that he believed God used to get him into the monastery.

    When Luther told his father this, and how he blieved it was God’s doing, his father replied, “Or the devil!”

    That remark sent Luther into deep contemplation or the validity of his belief that this was all of God.

    I guess that if it were really from the devil, that God can still utilize it for His own desires.

    Thanks D.P.!

    – Steve

  10. “Have you ever acted upon the basis of something that came to you in a dream?

    How did it turn out?”
    Yes, and she slapped me.

  11. Sorry couldn’t help that.

  12. What Jesus said on the cross applies: “It is finished”. Rely not on dreams but on the word of God. It will not lead us astray as dreams may. Want a dream interpreted? Talk to your pastor. That my $.02.

  13. The good news is that the Bible gives us advice for this in 1 John: “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God.” –1 John 4:1-2.

    My blog is a manifestation of me stepping out in faith from a dream that I believe God gave me a few months ago. The dream was short, but clear. I was some type of evangelist or speaker getting ready to deliver a message to a church congregation. That was the visual aspect of the dream.

    The awareness I had in the dream was that it was yet future and many steps lead me to that point. I know the gifts God has blessed me with and one of them is writing. So, when He put it on my heart to start a blog, I stepped out in faith. I don’t know how I will get to the “vision.” That is in God’s hands. I just need to seek Him, step-by-step and, if He gives me more dreams, then I will test them to see if they will bring glory to God.

  14. Bror,

    You had it coming. If I could reach through this screen…why I’d…(never mind)

  15. James,

    Sound advice (as always). You must read the Bible a lot!

    Well worth the 2 cents!

    Thanks James!

  16. Joe,

    I very much like the phrase “stepping out in faith”.

    You trusted that He would be at work in whatever you endeavored and it has been fruitful. (any blog that promotes Christ must be!).

    Thanks for stopping by and sharing with us, Joe!

    – Steve

  17. Sorry to divert,

    Pastor Mark and Steve,

    You will enjoy this.

    http://www.christianitytoday.com/le/2008/spring/9.74.html

  18. From the post: “Have you ever acted upon the basis of something that came to you in a dream?”

    God does speak to us in dreams, but Jeremiah reminds us, as does Amos and others, that we need to measure our visions and dreams next to the plumb line of the Word. Satan can also be speaking to us in dreams. I’m on my second novel inspired by dreams I had, and the gospel message is very strong in both; even more profound than I could have imagined on my own. Even so, all authority still belongs to God’s Word.

  19. Jim,

    I have had similar experience on a lesser level.

    Some of my blog posts are inspired from dreams I’ve had. (but let that not dissuade anyone as to whether or not God was involved).

    If there’s a doubt then it’s back to the Word of God for clarification!

    Good thoughts, Jim!

    – Steve

  20. I don’t think God will reveal any new revelation to us in dreams. It may be possible that God may “nudge” us by dreams. Yet I would be very skeptical about it. My advice is to pray about it and God will give you a peace about it if he wants you to go forward with it.

  21. Craig,

    I think you may be right.

    While nothing really ‘new’ may come to us in a dream. We may have dreams about things we have studied in scripture or have heard in a sermon that come in a different form in a dream.

    I have had dreams that had something to do with the Christian faith wherein I got an idea for a post to write, or something to say to a friend or relative about the faith.

    I guess at least indirectly, you could say it came from God.

    But, as you say, when you’re not sure…pray!

    Thanks Craig! Go Spartens!

  22. What dreams may come? The process of awakening often involves free association which can give us the solution to a problem or concern that vexed us yesterday. I have often been able to solve a problem by sleeping on it and letting my subconcious work on it. But I don’t blame it on the Holy Spirit.

  23. James,

    Nice one!!

    Why should He take the blame for our wacky ideas that came to us in a dream!

    I like it!

    – Steve

  24. I have no problem with counting on the possibility that God will speak to us through our dreams. I don’t believe it’s His preferred way of speaking but why should I try to put Him in a box that doesn’t allow for this kind of thing? When it comes to interpretation, I’d be very careful not to jump to conclusions too quickly. Even in the biblical precedents it was often others (Joseph, Daniel) who provided proper interpretation and guidance. And if God really wants me to understand something, there will most likely be other factors involved as well pointing in the same direction, and not in a weird mystical kind of way.

    Recurrent dreams or dreams that have a radically different feel to them may indeed carry an important message – even if it’s just our subconscious self telling us that there’s a suppressed issue that has not been dealt with yet.

  25. Josh,

    You have also made a great case for God working through our dreams.

    “… even if it’s just our subconscious self telling us that there’s a suppressed issue that has not been dealt with yet.”

    That is a great statement.

    But as you say, should we put God into a box?

    It would have to be a big box and I don’t think we could do it…but that doesn’t keep many from trying!

    Thanks a lot, Josh!

    – Steve

  26. Here’s a thought…anyone out there married to wonderful mate? What stood out? Their strict adherence to your tenets of the gospel…? I’m guessing there was a little bit of “he’s kind of cute when he..(makes me laugh, avoids my question) or “the way she smiles and looks up at me and…has nice legs (you get the idea). Yet, for those of us that are happily married, I doubt that you applied a cut and dry test…you had faith..and there was just something about that person. I think dreams (nighttime, daytime) can be the same. I don’t know why a legal career caught my eye or what resonated exactly, but I won a legal battle for asylum for someone the other day… What if I hadn’t become a lawyer? What if I ignored whatever it was that attracted me to it? What if God partnered with ME by getting my attention, in all places, a dream?

  27. Barb,

    You make some excellent points. (some that I never dreamed of making :D )

    ” What if God partnered with ME by getting my attention, in all places, a dream?”

    Quite possible indeed. With God all things are possible!

    My wife might say that with me, maybe ‘nightmares’ might be a be a better term! :D

    Thanks so much, Barb!

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