Friday, May 18, 2007

And Your Old Men Shall Dream Dreams (Acts 2:17)

"la milagrossa" sent me the following question via email:
i was on and somehow came unto your space. i want to ask you if you believe in communication through dreams?
Yes I do. This article is very helpful. In it we find the following passage:
In the light of the belief and practices of the ancient peoples, we are better able to judge the belief and practices recorded in the Bible. That God may enter into communication with man through dreams is asserted in Numbers 12:6, and still more explicitly in Job 33:14 sqq.: "God speaketh once. . . By a dream in a vision by night, when deep sleep falleth upon men, and they are sleeping in their beds: then he openeth the ears of men, and teaching instructeth them in what they are to learn." As a matter of fact, Divine revelation through dreams occurs frequently in the Old and in the New Testament. In most of the cases recorded the dream is expressly said to come from God; of this description are, e.g., the dreams of Abimelech (Genesis 20:3); of Jacob (Genesis 28:12; 31:10); of Solomon (IIIK.,iii,5-15); of Nabuchodonosor (Dan.,ii,19); of Daniel (Dan., vii,1); of Joseph (Matthew 1:20; 3:13); of St. Paul (Acts 23:11; 27:23), unless we should interpret these passages as referring to visions granted to the Apostle while awake. God is said to appear Himself only in a few instances, as to Abimelech, to Jacob, to Solomon, and to Daniel, if, as is generally admitted, the "Ancient of days", spoken of in this connection, should be understood to be God; in other instances He is said to speak through an angel, as in dreams narrated by St. Matthew and St. Paul. The Bible records other dreams, which, though prophetic, are not distinctly said to come from God (Genesis 37:6; 40:5; 41:1; Judges 7:13; 2 Maccabees 15:11). It appears, however, from the circumstances and from their prophetic import, that their Divine origin cannot be doubted; at least their interpretation is declared (Genesis 40:8) to "belong to God". Accepting the historical truth of these facts, there is no reason indeed why God should not use dreams as a means of manifesting His will to man.
As you can see from this passage (and from the rest of the article) there is much evidence from the Bible that God communicated to men through dreams, and there's no reason to think that he does not continue to do so. Now, are all dreams a communication from God? I doubt it. Psychology has revealed that the events of our day, unresolved issues, your last thoughts before you sleep, and even what you eat can all cause a person to have dreams. But, when God's talking to you, it's usually pretty clear ;)
i've been dreaming of Jesus on and off for about 6 months now. in one dream he asked me to swim with him in an ocean that seemed dark and cold. i hesitated (i don't like to share water) and when i realized that it was Him, i accepted. i dove in, He said that He would reveal all to me. the water was warm and when i realized that i could breath underwater, he began to tell me all that he promised.
Are you wanting me to interpret this for you? I actually learned how to do this sort of thing when I was working on my M.Ed. in Mental Health Counseling. A lot of it also comes from being able to find the underlying meaning and symbolism of objects and events. But, I hestitate to do that here because I would need to know more about you, and your history, and your present circumstances before I could speculate as to what it means.

Even then, it's important to note that mine would simply be one of many possible interpretations. So, it's good to take it for what it's worth. I also feel that the "client" should be the one doing most of the interpreting, with the "counselor" helping him along by asking probing questions. Talking about your dreams with a wise and knowledgeable person can be helpful, perhaps within the context of therapy or spiritual direction. I've been able to help several people that way.

last night i dreamed i was sitting around a table with saints, they were giving me instructions, but i can't remember about what. after i was in a store a woman approached me and told me that tonight, 5-11-07, is the most important day for praying, specifically 12pm-1am. what does it all mean???? are these just dreams or is something up? i'm not sure who to turn to. i figured a perfect stranger is the safest route.
It does seem that there is more to this than simply what you had for dinner, especially since your dreams are spiritual or religious in nature. Pray for wisdom that you will be able to know more fully what God wishes to communicate to you, even if that be nothing at all. I'm sorry I can't be more helpful here. I'm tempted to interpret your dreams, but I just don't think that would be very responsible.

Mary, Seat of Wisdom....pray for us.

Pax Christi,

1 comment:

jmjtina said...

Hey nick, and also if I may add, today's scripture reading was about a vision that Paul had at night about not being afraid and speaking up......and also, when I wake or something is telling me to pray at a certain time, I ask God to give it to those who need it the most during that time and my future spouse. I know I've woken up in the middle of the night and have taken that as a sign that the Lord is asking me to pray for someone specifically. Bottom line is, pray. Anyway, thought I'd share that small bit.

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