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Bible Dictionaries

Fausset's Bible Dictionary

Dream

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The revelation of God's will in dreams is characteristic of the early and less perfect patriarchal times (Genesis 28:12; Genesis 31:24; Genesis 37:5-10); to Solomon, 1 Kings 3:5, in commencing his reign; the beginnings of the New Testament dispensation (Matthew 1:20; Matthew 2:13; Matthew 2:19; Matthew 2:22); and the communications from God to the rulers of the pagan world powers, Philistia, Egypt, Babylon (Genesis 20:3; Genesis 40:5; Genesis 41:1); Elihu, Job 33:15; Daniel 2; Daniel 4:5, etc. The dream form of revelation is that most appropriate to those outside the kingdom of God. So the Midianite (Judges 7:13), Pilate's wife (Matthew 27:19). But it is the Israelites Joseph and Daniel who interpret; for pagandom is passive, Israel active, in divine things to the glory of the God of Israel. Dreams were a frequent means of imposture and idolatry Deuteronomy 13:1-3; Zechariah 10:2).

The dream form of revelation is placed below that of prophecy and even divination (Numbers 12:6; Joel 2:28; 1 Samuel 28:6). "Trances" and "visions" are mentioned in the Christian church, but not dreams. While God has acted and can act on the mind in a dream (wherein the reason and judgment are dormant, but the sensations and imaginations active and uncontrolled by the judgment), His higher mode of revelation is that wherein the understanding is active and conscious; consequently, the former mode appears more in imperfect stages of the development of God's scheme than in the advanced stages. "In the multitude of dreams are divers vanities" (Ecclesiastes 5:7), i.e., God's service becomes by "dreams" (foolish fancies as to what God requires of worshippers); and random "words," positive vanity of manifold kinds; compare Matthew 6:7, "they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking."

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Bibliography Information
Fausset, Andrew R. Entry for 'Dream'. Fausset's Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/fbd/d/dream.html. 1949.

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