Now Joseph had a dream, and he told it to his brothers; Genesis 37:5a
Dreams have always fascinated me. It’s difficult sometimes to remember our dreams, but sometimes we have one of those dreams that sticks with you after you wake up. Sometimes the dreams seem so real that it’s hard to figure out whether it happened in real life. And some of those dreams can be really scary.
Dreams play a big part in the Bible. In the quote at the beginning of this post, Joseph has a dream and he tells the dream to his brothers. His brothers are not happy when Joseph tells them that they will bow down to him. But we learn later in the Bible that after being sold as a slave into Egypt, because Joseph is able to help Pharaoh understand his dreams, he rises to a very high position under Pharaoh and eventually his brothers do bow down to him.
In the book of Daniel we learn that King Nebuchadnezzar has a troubling dream that none of his wise men can interpret. Daniel, however, through his faith in God is able to tell Nebuchadnezzar what the dream means. This allows Daniel to have a position in Nebuchadnezzar’s court also.
In the New Testament we know that Peter had a dream in Acts 10:9-16. This dream has been misinterpreted by many scholars to mean that God was allowing man to now eat unclean foods. This interpretation is 100% incorrect. What this dream really signified was that God wanted Peter to mingle with the Gentiles, something that was forbidden in Jewish law.
And possibly one of the most important series of dreams occurs in the Book of Revelation. The Apostle John receives information from God on the end times message in visions or dreams and writes this message as information so that we are prepared for the coming apocalypse. Revelation is a difficult book to follow, but is one that any Christian should learn!
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What about us? How do dreams affect our lives? We all dream! Even if you never remember your dreams, they still occur. They take place over a few seconds to a few minutes, even if when you remember them they seem to have lasted forever. We also have reoccurring dreams that will repeat over time.
I have often had dreams where violence has been done to me and woke up extremely fearful and unable to get back to sleep. I have had dreams where I have been conversing with my mother who passed away in 2015. I’m sure many of us have had dreams where we cannot remember the combination to our high school locker. What do all these strange events really mean?
We are told that our dreams are a way of our brains processing the days events. They’re also a way for us to work through things that could possibly be troubling us. And they could just be our brains having a little fun. But dreams are very important to us, even if they don’t provide some great biblical revelation.
I’ve never been one to put great importance on what happens in my brain while I sleep. I just accept it as another one of life’s great mysteries. If God chooses to explain why we have certain dreams, then He will do it in His time. For the most part though I think we need to just accept the dreams, unless God decides that you are the next great prophet!