Man’s dreams, God’s word

The Doctor's Life Support for 13 October

‘I had a dream! I had a dream!’

Jeremiah 23: 25

It can be a good thing to have a vision in life. The prophet Joel anticipated a time when old men would dream dreams and young men see visions. (Joel 2: 28) This was vividly fulfilled at Pentecost – a happy antidote to dry-as-dust formal religion. God still works in this way, giving his people the ability to fulfil God-given dreams. Yet it can be difficult to distinguish between the validity of visions. God’s people are warned about false and lying prophets, who use God’s name but are deluded in mind. (Jeremiah 23: 26) The warning is still needed today, even in some professedly Christian circles. The contrast lies with the one who holds to God’s word. The comparison is between chaff and wheat. False visions keep on changing, appearing and disappearing. God’s word is unchanging. That some hold to different interpretations can cause problems. Our basic attitude should be to seek for the truth and honestly face its implications. As Peter said when warning against error, there are some things in the Bible hard to understand. (2 Peter 3: 16) Yet do we come to it believing in Jesus Christ and being subject to his word as the Word of God (1 John 1: 1, 2) or are we instead to pick and choose or even judge it? Much division is based on competitive prejudice, not on a humble desire for enlightenment. There is always the danger of coming to God intellectually, not relationally. If we come to him trusting in his Son, then just as the Holy Spirit inspired those who first wrote the scriptures (2 Peter 1: 21) so we are assured that the same Spirit will interpret and convey God’s word to us, as a light shining in a dark place.

Written by D E B Powell from UK

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