Do you dream? It is the start of a new year, and it is time to hear from God! But first ... some context.
In two short chapters, Matthew has talked about dreams and how specifically God guided the decisions and actions of the man who had the custodial care of Jesus. Think of it, God chose to impart the name of Jesus to Joseph in a dream. Speaking of Mary, God spoke in Joseph's dream, "...For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit. And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins."1 Wow, God told Joseph to name the Messiah "Jesus" in a dream, and that his son would save us from our sins-in a dream.
We saw that God had spoken to Joseph, telling him to take Mary his wife-in a dream. God warned the wise men not to return to Herod-in a dream. And then God told Joseph to take the Christ Child to Egypt-in a dream. God knew that Joseph would take heed of the dream and obey; the safety of the baby Jesus was dependent on that. [Joseph is certainly an unsung hero in the birth, upbringing and life of our Savior, Jesus!] And then, in a dream, God directed the holy family back home to Nazareth. Dreams.
Your attention, please--I invite you to pray with me a moment, or like Moses, take off your sandals, because we are standing on holy ground.2 'Lord God, I pray that you would illumine our hearts and minds; free them up to receive your words-not mine, but yours. Help us not consider these thoughts while half asleep or lackadaisically for they are too important-they are life changing, revolutionary and radical, and meant to change our relationships with you individually, strengthening our faith and our intimacy with you. Speak to us, God, I pray.' Amen
For God speaks again and again, though people do not recognize it. He speaks in dreams, in visions of the night, when deep sleep falls on people as they lie in their beds.3
God still speaks to his children. And one of the ways God speaks is through dreams. If we are ever going to hear all that God wants to say to us, we must adjust to his ways of speaking. And one of his favorite ways of speaking is through dreams.4
As Job indicated (above), God uses dreams to warn, but also to encourage5, guide6, command, let us know something is wrong, and give us a picture of the future. Also, speaking of dreams, Job said, "They will fade like a dream and not be found. They will vanish like a vision in the night."7 Note to self: if I believe I have heard from God in a dream, I better write it down, or I run the risk of forgetting it.
Dreams are not the only way God speaks, to be sure, but it was the powerful dreams recorded in Matthew 1 and 2 that prompted me to discuss this all-important topic.
So, how does God speak to us?
-through the words of Scripture -in a still, small voice -through other believers - including messages from the pulpit --visions - when awake / dreams - when asleep --circumstances - opened or closed doors; serendipitous meetings
--a "knowing" in our innermost being
But hear this: The primary address at which the voice of God may be found is the Bible. More of God's speaking to me has come in conjunction with study and teaching of the Bible than with anything else. True that. The Bible expresses the mind of God since God himself speaks to us through its pages.8
There is nothing in the Bible that indicates that God no longer speaks; in fact, Jesus said, I am the Good Shepherd. I know my sheep and my sheep know me-My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.9
But God never contradicts Scripture...ever.
More to follow~
1 - Matthew 1.20-21, NLT
2 - Exodus 3.5
3 -Job 33.14-18, NLT
4 - Surprised by the Voice of God, Jack Deere, Zondervan
5 - Acts 18.9-10
6 - Acts 16.9
7 - Job 20.8, NLT
8 - Me and Dallas Willard, Hearing God, InterVarsity Press
9 - John 10.14, 27, NIV
You need to be a member of All About GOD to add comments!
Join All About GOD