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People's Dictionary of the Bible


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Dream. One mode of divine communication to the mind of man has been by dreams. Numbers 12:6. While bodily organs were asleep and yet the perception active, God has sometimes spoken, sometimes in the way of direct message, occasionally by symbolic representation, for which afterwards an interpreter was needed. The prophetic dream must be distinguished from the prophetic vision. The latter might be in the night, Acts 18:9; Acts 23:11; Acts 27:23; but the senses were not wrapped up in sleep. It was by means of dreams that God communicated with those who were not of his covenant people. Genesis 20:3-7; Genesis 31:24; Genesis 40:5; Genesis 41:1-8; Judges 7:13; Daniel 2:1; Daniel 4:5; Daniel 4:10-18; Matthew 2:12; Matthew 27:19. Often, indeed, it was by a dream that God spoke to his most favored servants. Genesis 16:12-16; Genesis 37:6-10; Matthew 1:20-21. God communicated by a dream with Solomon, not only while he was young, 1 Kings 3:5-15, but also in his mature life. 1 Kings 9:2-9. We can only say that the Lord acts herein according to his good pleasure. The false dreaming of a dreamer of dreams, it may be added, was censured and to be punished. Deuteronomy 13:1-5.

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Bibliography Information
Rice, Edwin Wilbur, DD. Entry for 'Dream'. People's Dictionary of the Bible. 1893.

Lectionary Calendar
Sunday, September 15th, 2019
the Week of Proper 19 / Ordinary 24
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