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English Bible Dictionary

Dreams

 

The Scripture declares that the influence of the Spirit of God upon the soul extends to its sleeping as well as its waking thoughts. But, in accordance with the principle enunciated by St. Paul in (1 Corinthians 14:15) dreams, in which the understanding is asleep, are placed below the visions of prophecy, in which the understanding plays its part. Under the Christian dispensation, while we read frequently of trances and vision, dreams are never referred to as vehicles of divine revelation. In exact accordance with this principle are the actual records of the dreams sent by God. The greater number of such dreams were granted, for prediction or for warning, to those who were aliens to the Jewish covenant, and you can find more about that here on st-takla.org on other commentaries and dictionary entries. And where dreams are recorded as means of God's revelation to his chosen servants, they are almost always referred to the periods of their earliest and most imperfect knowledge of him. Among the Jews, "if any person dreamed a dream which was peculiarly striking and significant, he was permitted to go to the high priest in a peculiar way, and see if it had any special import. But the observance of ordinary dreams and the consulting of those who pretend to skill in their interpretation are repeatedly forbidden. (13:1-5; 18:9-14)--Schaff.

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