Why God Speaks in Dreams and Visions

Nowhere in the Bible does God provide a direct answer as to why he speaks in dreams and visions. We know that he speaks this way frequently – over one third of the material in the Old Testament is in the form of a dream and/or vision. We also see him speaking this way in the New Testament (Acts 2:17), but we are never given the reason as to why. So in this post, let me share some of my own thoughts on why God speaks in dreams and visions…

He could have said: “I will restore your hope and raise you up as a strong nation.” Instead, he showed Ezekiel this:

A desolate and lonely valley. An array of dry bones bleached white by the sun. A blast of air rises on the horizon. It swirls and blows, sweeping away the dust and exposing the bones. Suddenly there’s movement. A stirring in the wind. The bones begin to shake and tremble. Joints lock and seal, clicking together in rhythmic flow. From the scatter comes order. From the dust comes alignment. Then flesh appears. Muscle and tissue envelope the bones finding curvature and form. Limbs and torsos, toes and fingers take shape along the valley floor. Still the corpses lay, helpless in the void until a final breath surges through them and they rise with grace and fortitude. Standing tall, they unite together in formation, fixed with resolve and strength (Ezekiel 37:1-10).

God could have said: “I am calling Joshua and Zerubbabel to complete the temple.” But instead he showed Zechariah this:

The lamp of the temple hammered out of pure gold and inscribed with the delicate blossoms of the almond. Seven channels curve upward from its base, opening into empty cups as though waiting to be filled. On each side of the lamp are two olive trees, towering and sturdy like soldiers on guard. From their branches, two golden pipes extend outward. They reach towards the lamp, and from them streams of golden oil begin to flow. The oil empties into the branches of the menorah filling them one by one. Eventually the oil saturates the wicks, fuelling the dryness and causing them to flicker into a fiery blaze (Zechariah 4).

God could have said: “I will restore and reward you for your suffering.” But instead he showed John this:

A river of water clear as crystal. It runs freely with no trace of contamination, no obstruction in its path. High above is its source – a place where the flow never runs dry. Carving a wide path, the river courses through the city, refreshing and cleansing in its wake. Alongside its banks, trees grow; towering vestiges of life and shelter. Heavy with fruit the boughs incline and shade, ready to bear their offerings. The fruit is rich and ripe, its leaves plump with verve, ready to be plucked and used for healing (Rev. 22:1-3).

Perhaps now you can understand why God speaks in dreams and visions…

“Hearing God’s voice in dreams and visions is like watching a movie instead of reading a book.”

Why do YOU think God speaks in dreams and visions? Share a comment here.

Learn More: The God Dreams course will equip you with everything you need to know about understanding and recognising God’s voice in your dreams. The 6-session online course provides a biblical basis for hearing God’s voice in dreams and visions, an easy-to-use framework for understanding dreams and a guide for understanding symbolic language. Register here!

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