Friday, September 30, 2011

"And your sons and daughters will prophesy, Your old men will dream dreams"

There is a lot of attention being paid these days to a verse from Joel 2:28 and repeated by Peter in Acts 2:17. It says,

The Day of the LORD
"It will come about after this That I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind; And your sons and daughters will prophesy, Your old men will dream dreams, Your young men will see visions."

Many people take this to mean that we should accept the dreams and prophecies of everyone these days because these are the latter days and, well, the verse says what it says. But let's take a close look at several interpretations for better decision-making.

Another interpretation is that it was fulfilled at Pentecost. It was Peter who repeated the prophecy from Joel, and the time was Pentecost, fifty days after Jesus had died and the moment the Holy Spirit came down. But if it was fulfilled at Pentecost, it was fulfilled at Pentecost. However, the verse's context is the Day of the Lord (judgment), not Pentecost. The full verse is:

It will come about after this
That I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind;
And your sons and daughters will prophesy,
Your old men will dream dreams,
Your young men will see visions.

29“Even on the male and female servants
I will pour out My Spirit in those days.

30“I will display wonders in the sky and on the earth,
Blood, fire and columns of smoke.

31“The sun will be turned into darkness
And the moon into blood
Before the great and awesome day of the LORD comes.

32“And it will come about that whoever calls on the name of the LORD
Will be delivered;
For on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem
There will be those who escape,
As the LORD has said,
Even among the survivors whom the LORD calls.

At Pentecost, were there wonders in the sky and on the earth? Blood, fire and columns of smoke? Was the sun turned into darkness? And the moon into blood? No.

Now if we take the context, and the verses above the dreams verse and after the dreams verse point to the Day of the Lord, then let's look at the Day of the Lord.

Got Questions describes it this way- "The phrase “day of the Lord” usually identifies events that take place at the end of history (Isaiah 7:18-25) and is often closely associated with the phrase “that day.” One key to understanding these phrases is to note that they always identify a span of time during which God personally intervenes in history, directly or indirectly, to accomplish some specific aspect His plan."

It is not just one Day but a span of time, and we are told that span of judgment time will be either 7 or three and a half years (depending again on your interpretation of the Tribulation period). (Dan 9:27). The Joel verse begins by saying "After this". After what? The day of the Lord. So the dreaming and prophesying is not during the Tribulation but after: the Millennium period. Further, the prophecy speaks of survivors.

Finally, some people say that the dreaming and prophesying began at Pentecost and continues through the Tribulation, that it encompasses the entire Church Age period. I discount that interpretation because the entire Church Age period has not been the Day of the Lord. Also, it leaves the canon open for all manner of personal experience to be placed alongside the bible. We do have a kind of Charismatic Chaos going on now as a result of so many people deciding that is what the Joel verse means. People say they are prophets and others say that are having dreams and their experience is placed not only alongside but higher than the bible itself. Phil Johnson recounts the chaos that results when this happens: "They speak of Scripture as the "dead letter," compared to their modern prophecies, which they believe are "fresh and living words" from God. So they have effectively subjugated Scripture to questionable phenomena."

No, I believe the context of the verse shows us that the dreaming and prophesying will occur after the Tribulation, after the time when the sun was darkened and the pillars of fire came. After the survivors whom the LORD calls. After The Day. Not now.

Besides, why rely on dreams and prophesies of some person as proof of Jesus's work in the world, when their source cannot be 100% guaranteed? And when the bible as source, CAN?

30 comments:

  1. Anonymous has left a new comment on your post ""And your sons and daughters will prophesy, Your o... ":

    Why would we need to dream and prophesy AFTER the tribulation, when we are in the presence of the Lord and we no longer need revelation?

    You say, "Many people take this to mean that we should accept the dreams and prophecies of everyone these days because these are the latter days." We don't need to accept the dreams and prophesies of "everyone" -- we need to TEST them with scripture.

    You talked about me using straw man fallacies. But you have actually done that very thing in these last two posts. You are arguing against something that I never said.

    Can you please quote one mainstream commentator that believes that we will be dreaming these dreams and prophesying AFTER the Triblation, in the Millenium? Because when "that which is Perfect has come" the gifts will cease.

    You are really stretching the tense of that verse to promote your own preconceived belief. No offense. I think you are grounded in the faith, but we disagree in this one point (and I am not a Pentecostal).

    And if you think this verse is talking about after the Tribulation, why does Peter say that what was happening was a fulfillment of Joel's prophesy?

    What happened was also recorded throughout Acts when the Holy Spirit would come upon someone and they would be empowered with the dunamos power of God to be bold witnesses. This was not just the apostles. This was the same dunomos power that is quoted throughout the New Testament.

    It isn't crazy, barking like dogs, slain in the Spirit goosebumps. It is clearly laid out in Scripture, it is orderly, it is testable.

    What it is is that you have a difference of opinion, and that is fine. But what you are writing about is not what I have talked about. And even your analysis of Acts 2 (Joel 2:28) it doesn't make sense, you cite no support, and you conclude not with "the Bible says . . . " but rather with "No, I BELIEVE the context of the verse shows . . ."

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    1. Exactly my views! Why would we need to dream and prophesy after the tribulation. It is finished! Our job is to disciple and his Holy Spirit is going to do a mighty work through us for His Kingdom. Our time is short and there are many seeds that need to be sown and during a time of such great spiritual warfare and trial, God's Holy Spirit is going to empower us even more to do his will in a mighty way!!!

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  2. ANONYMOUS-
    "Why would we need to dream and prophesy AFTER the tribulation, when we are in the presence of the Lord and we no longer need revelation?"

    PRATA
    There will be tribulation survivors, something that was mentioned in the end of the Joel verse. They will be flesh. They will live a long time, even the ones dying at age 100 called a tragedy that they died so young. (Isaiah 65:20-23) But they will be flesh and they will need to convert to the Lord just as we did. Don’t forget at the end of the Millennium, there will be one last rebellion and people still side with satan. (Revelation 20:7-10)

    ANONYMOUS-
    "You say, "Many people take this to mean that we should accept the dreams and prophecies of everyone these days because these are the latter days." We don't need to accept the dreams and prophesies of "everyone" -- we need to TEST them with scripture."

    PRATA-
    You’re right. But they are not testing. They are accepting. Blindly. It is the Charismatic movement and it, combined with liberalism, is killing the church.

    ANONYMOUS-
    "You talked about me using straw man fallacies. But you have actually done that very thing in these last two posts. You are arguing against something that I never said."

    PRATA
    I wasn’t directing this blog entry to you, lol. It stemmed from a conversation at church, a sermon I read, and the Holy Spirit.

    ANONYMOUS-
    "Can you please quote one mainstream commentator that believes that we will be dreaming these dreams and prophesying AFTER the Triblation, in the Millenium? Because when "that which is Perfect has come" the gifts will cease."

    PRATA
    John Macarthur. ANd, you never addressed the part of verse that says it will be 'after this.'

    ANONYMOUS-
    "You are really stretching the tense of that verse to promote your own preconceived belief. No offense. I think you are grounded in the faith, but we disagree in this one point (and I am not a Pentecostal)."

    PRATA
    I believe this because I studied the Joel verse.

    ANONYMOUS-
    "And if you think this verse is talking about after the Tribulation, why does Peter say that what was happening was a fulfillment of Joel's prophesy?"

    PRATA
    Peter was quoting Joel 2:28.

    ANONYMOUS
    "What happened was also recorded throughout Acts when the Holy Spirit would come upon someone and they would be empowered with the dunamos power of God to be bold witnesses. This was not just the apostles. This was the same dunomos power that is quoted throughout the New Testament."

    PRATA
    Non sequitur

    ANONYMOUS-
    "It isn't crazy, barking like dogs, slain in the Spirit goosebumps. It is clearly laid out in Scripture, it is orderly, it is testable."

    PRATA
    "It is crazy. It opposes Paul’s admonition to have orderly services. ( 1 Cor 14:5-12 and onward).

    ANONYMOUS
    "What it is is that you have a difference of opinion, and that is fine. But what you are writing about is not what I have talked about. And even your analysis of Acts 2 (Joel 2:28) it doesn't make sense, you cite no support, and you conclude not with "the Bible says . . . " but rather with "No, I BELIEVE the context of the verse shows . . ."

    PRATA
    "I am not writing about what you commented on. It is not about you. Maybe you overlooked the many verses I quoted, and also the context I mentioned. It might be edifying for you to go back and read, then pray, and refrain from knee-jerk responses laden with anger, and study a while before responding again.

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  3. What is your definition of "last days"?

    Hebrews 1:1-2
    (In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe.)

    Author of Hebrews at the time of writing (~2000 years ago) refer to his time as "in these last days".

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  4. Some people say that the last days is the time between Jesus first coming and His second coming, i.e., the Church Age. Others say that it is strictly related to the 7-year judgment period of the Tribulation. Still others say that it is the time since Israel has been back in the land (1948 onward.)

    I am in the former camp, that the last days are the Church Age. However, I overlay Jesus' use of the birth pangs over the 2000 year period. The birth pangs make themselves noticeable at the end for a short time. A human gestation is 9 months, (6042 hours) but labor only lasts 24-48 hours. A short segment of the overall event.

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  5. If Joel 2:28 is in the context of post-Tribulation, then why did Peter quote Joel 2:28 to address the people in the context of Acts 2?

    People would have easily challenged Peter by asking him, "where is the blood, and fire, and the billows of smoke?"

    Peter, in addressing the event at Pentecost stated Acts 2:15-16 (These people are not drunk, as you suppose. It’s only nine in the morning! No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:)

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  6. Remember, the Jews knew Jesus was returning. They did not know it was going to be in two stages. Because the Old Testament prophecies spoke of judgment in conjunction to Jesus return, yet there had been no judgment with Jesus having died and gone to heaven,They did not know that Jesus would be coming back in two stages, first to save and then to judge. This was new information to them. Paul emphasized that as well, he called it a mystery, and said he was revealing it for the first time.

    In Joel we read of a kingdom prophecy. He had in mind the kingdom and the coming of the reign of the Messiah. Peter's repetition of this prophecy from Joel was the reminder of the promise of the coming kingdom. Because the Jews sure didn't see any kingdom in front of them at that time!

    The Acts repetition of the Joel verse is a sort of an echo of Paul's reminder that the Holy Spirit is a deposit of a guarantee of a future fulfillment. His sermon and repetition of Joel's promise was a reminder of the promise of a coming kingdom, a reassurance to the Jews from Joel thru Peter.

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  7. Wow. I have been reading this blog for nearly a year and now this saddens me.
    I used to be like you. Two years ago the Lord turned my life upside down by giving me three distinct dreams and an appearance of HIM. This was on the subject of my Down's Syndrome son future near death/illness (he was healed on deaths door). Even my pastors did not believe me until 6 days later everything happened exactly as the Lord had revealed. Since then I have repented from my pride and He has opened the mouth of my non-verbal son to prophesy scripture. The Lord knows how to use each person HIS way and it IS still in alignment with scripture.

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  8. I'm sorry you're sad. I don't know why me having an opinion based in scripture as I see it makes you sad though.

    However, I notice that every person defending the personal dreams and one on one revelation from Jesus as valid do so on the basis of their own *experience*. No one has offered to defend why their visit from Jesus in a dream is valid from scripture.

    It's always, 'I had a dream and therefore it must be true'. 'My aunt had a dream and she is very sincere about it and therefore must be true'. 'My second cousin once removed had a dream and it changed his life so must be true'.

    Would it surprise you to know that I had many dreams just as I was coming to the Lord and just after I came to the Lord? They were all apocalyptic dreams that later, as I got to know the bible, they lined up exactly with certain bible verses. My dreams were the end times judgments live and in color. I didn't know the bible and I had no prior knowledge of these scenes due to my limited exposure to the Gospel. So where did these come from? Jesus? Unlikely. Not with the ease with which satan deceives, not with what the bible says on the subject, combined with what we know about the end times deception.

    They impacted me greatly and they were distinctive, unlike any other dreams I'd had before. However, the more I studied the bible the MORE I became suspicious of them. Even though I had the exact experience the Muslims say they are having in their conversion testimonies, I won't say if they were from God. You know why?

    Because they line up with scripture, then I point to scripture to say what the judgments are. People don't need to hear my dream of Gog Magog battle, they can read it in the bible, which is always a better barometer of truth than some lady's dreams (me) she says she has had. Always. Why point to myself having some experience when I can just point straight to what Jesus said?

    Secondly, I know how easily people can be deceived by satan. Easily! These dreams are coming while we are unconscious, with our complicated mind offering up all sorts of weird combinations of scenes, or in some cases, while people are in medically induced drug states hanging between life and death. Not reliable states of mind, for sure. Personal experience is usually wrong, while the bible is always right.

    Yet people still defend their dreams as the most encouraging thing, when it should be the Word that encourages them.

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  9. Hello,

    I enjoy reading your blog, but with this article I must disagree. I believe the Bible makes it very clear that there will be no prophesying during the millennium:

    3 And it shall come to pass, that when any shall yet prophesy, then his father and his mother that begat him shall say unto him, Thou shalt not live; for thou speakest lies in the name of the LORD: and his father and his mother that begat him shall thrust him through when he prophesieth.

    4 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the prophets shall be ashamed every one of his vision, when he hath prophesied; neither shall they wear a rough garment to deceive:

    5 But he shall say, I am no prophet, I am an husbandman; for man taught me to keep cattle from my youth.

    6 And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends. (Zech. 13)

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  10. Hi Anonymous,

    Thank you for the scripture. I appreciate it very much.

    My interpretation of this section of Zechariah is the prophet describes the zeal against false prophecy. It speaks to the cleansing of Israel post-Tribulation.

    Rev 20 and Deut 13:6-10 are parallel verses. Zech 13:4 is parallel to Micah 3:7 and Jer 22:2.

    Again, it is talking about Israel's cleansing prior to their occupying the Kingdom in the next chapter, chapter 14. It is a cleansing from the deception by false prophets. The LORD will send out all spirits behind the false prophets and Israel will be so clean that if anyone tries to prophesy falsely even his own mother and father will kill him, that is how strict they will be against false prophets.

    That's my understanding of the verse. Thanks for sharing yours.

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  11. Hi Elizabeth.. I am a Christian who receives dreams and visions from God. I find they are clearer than normal dreams, and I remember every detail.. they are always about His word and are of a teaching nature. God shows me the meaning of things He wants me to understand. Everyone has a measure of faith from God, some believe God can speak in dreams, others believe the revelation has finished. God will deal with us where our faith is at, and His plan is different for each of us. I would be wary of saying "that's from Satan" just because I didn't believe God still gives people dreams. Let God be the judge.

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    1. If we know it is from God, who cares who does not believe. After all The Holy Spirit has not revealed this to the skeptics speak a word in season to them and move on. It is the work of God not man. Mark says these sign will follow those that BELIEVE. Nuff said, move on.

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  12. Hello Anonymous,

    I still have yet to find someone offering scripture that supersedes what God told us in Hebrews 1:1-2

    "In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe."

    All I get from people for rebuttal and for proofs are personal and emotional reasons. They say, "They're really clear"; "I learn from them". Personal experience never supersedes the bible and is the worst indicator for truth.
    .
    God wrote the bible to teach us. The Bible is finished, having revealed everything we need to know from now until eternity.

    Therefore, I DO judge. I judge all against the benchmark of the bible. It is called discernment.

    Of teaching, Jesus said,

    "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness," (2 Tim 3:16.) THAT is how we learn. Through scripture.

    If He wants you to learn something it will be thru the Word. Not a dream. Frankly, I think it is a pride thing that people cling to sightly to these alleged valid dreams. They like thinking that Jesus gave them something special and different that no one else seems to be getting.

    You've heard me say it six ways to Sunday and defend my stance from the bible. So here is someone else saying it: The following comment's authorship will be revealed at the end:

    "I am sometimes astonished that there should linger amongst our population still a notion that a certain kind of dream, especially if it be repeated a number of times, and if it be so vivid as to remain upon the imagination for a long period, is an index of the divine favor. Nothing can be more grossly untrue, nothing can be more baseless and without the shadow of evidence to back it up...there may have been dreams, and even apparitions, which have aroused the conscience, and so led to the commencement of spiritual life, in some rare cases where God has chosen specially to interfere, but that these are to be looked for, and to be expected, is a thing as far from truth as the east is from the west. What if you did see anything, or dream anything, what would that prove? Why, prove nothing whatever except that you were in an ill state of health, and that your imagination was morbidly active.

    Put such things away, they are superstitions fit for the uncivilized, but they are not fit for Christians of the nineteenth century: I do but mention them, not because, I think: any of you may have fallen into them, but that you may deal with them always very rigidly wherever you meet with them. They are superstitions not to be tolerated by Christian men; yet there are some who actually will not believe Christ's simple gospel unless some such absurdity as this can be joined into it.

    "God deliver you from such unbelief."
    Charles Haddon Spurgeon.

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    1. But you forget timothy didn't believe unless he touched Jesus hands after He came back, God knows Jesus knows The holy Ghost knows, some have to feel it ,see it, because this is man doubters, all one has to do is love ,show compassion and believe in the word read the word, let God to the rest of the teaching, ,the blue print is laid out, every second of your life is planned , so be happy and be good in it, do the love works of God by helping other not judging others smile ad go on, The Lord GOD IS GREAT THEN ALL OF US , JESUS GOD THE HOLY GHOST ONE IN THE SAME , UNDERSTAND THE POWER IN THAT AND YOU WILL BE FREE

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    2. Hi K,

      I am free. I've been saved by grace.

      No I don't forget about Thomas (not Timothy.) That is because Thomas' doubt is NOT A TEMPLATE or a PROMOTION of how to have faith.

      You're right, some have to see it and some have to feel it. That's too bad, because those people do not have faith. Hebrews 11:1 says what faith is-

      Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.

      I re-emphasize: "not seen."

      In fact, Thomas called Jesus My Lord and My God. He was a firm follower. When he said what he said he was in deep grief, having just heard the news of Jesus' death.

      Here is a link to a sermon in audio or transcript for you to better understand Thomas. Beware of taking a small verse pr part of a verse out of context and attempting to normalize it. Doing that is wrong.
      http://www.gty.org/resources/sermons/42-79/common-men-uncommon-calling-matthew-and-thomas

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  13. I never said that the revelation that God gives me from dreams is a new or "extra" revelation and if they were ever anything apart from what the word of God tells me I would dismiss them immediately. I not only have dreams, but also visions. For example I have visions of men on rooftops preaching, and it accompanies God's word of "what you hear in the ear proclaim on the rooftops".

    God never changes, if He wants to speak to a man using dreams or visions He can still do that. However I totally agree with you that the canon of scripture is CLOSED and the prophets as in the days before Christ who revealed Christ are finished. However, in the new testament God says He gives prophets to the church as well. It's just a different kind of prophesying which leads to edification of the church. Again, if you don't believe in prophecy for today it doesn't matter, it is irrelevant to a person being saved or not.

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  14. I guess, Anonymous, we should define prophecy. Prophecy as the current generation usually thinks of it is that a person speaks for the LORD giving new information and new revelation. Prophecy actually means to speak forth, to declare the divine will, to interpret the purposes of God, or to make known in any way the truth of God which is designed to influence people. In that context, every person who speaks for the Lord is a prophet, the pastors, teachers, and witnesses and evangelists. Sometimes that involved (In the OT and with John) foretelling the future. With the canon being closed, there is no more forthtelling the future. Jesus finished that as per Hebrews 1:1-2. The foretelling is in the bible now not thru the mouths of prophets.

    I "prophesy" every Sunday in Sunday school class, but what I do is to exhort my brethren on what is already in the bible and apply its urgency to the times.

    I do not speak to them from any dream I've had, but only from what is from the closed canon of the bible. THAT is the basis for the revelation, not a dream.

    As for personal prophecy, GotQuestions defines personal prophecy as "gift of prophecy as giving personal advice with a “thus says the Lord” presentation. Sadly, those who practice personal prophecy in this manner are often not any different than those who portray themselves as psychics."

    The completion of the Bible impacted the nature of the gift of prophecy. New information from any source outside the bible is false. Speaking forth on what is already in the bible with deeper insight thru the spiritual gift of prophecy goes on today.

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  15. I agree with you about the prophetic OT office being closed, and you are right about about how you prophesy in kids church. You are also led by the Spirit to help write this blog, it isn't anything "new" that you are teaching but it is the spirit of God inspiring you to write none the less. The same is true for me however God doesn't inspire me to write, but to paint and draw and He uses visions to do that. I guess my point was to not limit how the Holy spirit can work in our lives by stamping out the possibility of receiving a dream. Often my dreams confirm what the scriptures already say, they are pictures but they are never a new revelation. If they were new revelations and I was trying to add to scripture then I would be dead wrong and the last sentence in the bible would apply to me. I believe God can inspire through visual means and also inspire people like you to write.

    Be blessed.

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  16. Sorry, He doesn't give you visions to help you paint. He gave us the bible. Everything He wants you to see He told you already.

    I DO limit how the Spirit can work -- when the bible tells us how the Spirit works. Anything I add to it means I am imagining things from my own imagination.

    I'm obviously not getting thru to you. Please take a moment to read this blog entry by a Pastor put up a few days ago entitled "Don't make assumptions about God." It is based on this one among several other verses:
    "For who makes you different from anyone else? What do you have that you did not receive? (1 Corinthians 4:7)" The pastor wrote in part: "We all have access to the Word of God and the Spirit gives us understanding of that Word. It has been given to all of us to understand and to live. We can live it because of the Holy Spirit in us. There is no one who is given a revelation outside of this Word. There is nothing God reveals about himself that is not found here. There is nothing in ourselves that reveals anything about God that is not in the Word. What we know we have received from the Word."

    http://pastorpaulvbsblog.blogspot.com/2011/10/dont-make-assumptions-about-god.html

    be blessed- thru the Word.

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  17. I appreciate you attempting to get through to me, and I understand that you believe the prophetic gifts to the church are no longer for today. However I believe that the spiritual gifts of God are irrevocable and still for the church today.

    We both have the scriptures and it's Jesus who we will give an account to in the end. I'm not interested in causing division between us by trying to prove who is right etc. We are one in Him. All that matters is that those who don't know Him, find Him.

    May God continue to bless the work you are doing. xo

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  18. I m curious as to why you all haven't asked God? He has ALL the answers.

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    1. He does have all the answers, you are so right on that. I did inquire of the Lord. His answers are contained in the bible. That is where the answers are.

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  19. Disagree...Alot of people are coming out with visions now and dreams now. Why would we have visions and dreams at Tribulation or in Gods Wrath, people will be in a devastating mood by then.

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  20. By the way I dislike when people say I will not believe in Man only in God. God used Moses, Apostle Paul, Abraham etc these are Gods Prophets, we are Gods messengers, we dont speak on our own authority. When we are in Christ we follow Gods authority.

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  21. Hi Candy,

    The benchmark for interpreting the bible is not the experience people have. Experience doesn't validate the word. The word validates the word. That's what Peter was saying in 2 Peter 1:18-19. That he and John and James had been on the mountain and had experienced the transfiguration, and even for all that, "we have a MORE sure word in prophecy (preaching). Paul was extremely reluctant to discuss his vision of being taken to the Third Heaven, and as a matter of fact, discussed it only in the third person. Additionally, he said that what he saw there was not lawful to be expressed and a man may not utter. (2 Cor 12:4).Colossians 2:18 says that people who "going on in detail about visions" are "puffed up without reason by his sensuous mind" and this disqualifies them. So experience does not validate visions and dreams verses.

    The fact that so many people are having alleged dreams and visions today is proof that it is a time of deep apostasy and false wolves. For example, Beth Moore reports that she was lifted to another dimension by Jesus, who personally told her that His Bride is paralyzed by unbelief, and to go back and teach this.

    We know this is false for several reasons. First, 'Jesus" statement is internally contradictory. If someone doesn't believe, they aren't the bride. If they do believe they are the bride. One cannot be both bride and unbeliever.

    Second, if Jesus told someone something and then said to go teach it, that means the canon of the bible is open. Yet Revelation 22 says it is closed and that anyone adding to His word is cursed.

    Another reason we know today's visions and dreams are false, is not only that they say things contradictory to the bible, like Moore's "visions", but they say things contradictory to each other. During the age immediately following Pentecost, when Jesus did speak directly and visions were real (because the New Testament wasn't finished yet) what Peter, Paul, Luke, John etc heard never contradicted any other Apostle's teachings and revelation. But today we have some "prophets" saying we're going to have an outpouring of the Spirit and humans will bring the kingdom in, and other "prophets" are saying Jesus is withholding His spirit and we wont' have an outpouring until we repent. Today's prophecies, dreams and visions contradict each other.

    So to answer your question, why have dreams and visions again during the Tribulation? because it is a reverting back to Old Testament times. God sent a decree to the Israelites in Daniel 9:24. Here is an outline of the 490 year decree.

    1. Prophecy concerns Daniel's people and holy city, and must be applied completed to Israel and Jerusalem. (Daniel 9:24)
    2. The amount of time covered by the prophecy is 490 years. (Daniel 9:24)
    3. The 490 years of the prophecy would be necessary to accomplish six things with regard to Israel and Jerusalem. (Daniel 9:24)
    4. Starting point of 490 years. (Daniel 9:25)
    5. The first coming of the Messiah
    6. After the first 483 years, Messiah would be "cut off and have nothing" (Daniel 9:26)
    7. Jerusalem and the temple would be destroyed after the first 483 years (Daniel 9:26)
    8. The seventieth seven of years did not follow immediately after the first sixty-nine sevens of years.
    9. The activities of the coming prince or Antichrist during the last seven years. (Daniel 9:27)

    CONTINUED

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    1. CONTINUED FROM ABOVE

      God paused the time of the Israelites at year 483, 7 years short. He has been building His church this whole time. Parts 1-7 have been fulfilled. When He raptures the believers, signifying His completion of work in the Church, the clock will start ticking again and the last 7 years will be fulfilled. The last 7 years is a resumption of the Old Testament, when it was normal for God to speak personally and through prophets and visions. Secondly, it will be a time where there will be a famine of the word. Remember, all the believers will be gone and no one will be around to interpret the word or the events happening, not for a little while anyway. So God super-evangelizes 144,000 Jews from the 12 tribes to preach,(Rev 7 & 14) sends two witnesses, (Rev 11) and sends angels flying at midheaven to proclaim the Gospel. (Rev 14). Like no other time in history, the supernatural will be normal, thus dreams and visions will occur.

      Hope this helps - thanks for commenting. :)

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  22. I do believe that Acts 2:17 and beyond applies to today because I experience dreams and visions. I hear the voice of the Lord audibly. No, I don't need a straight jacket. I'm telling you this in hopes that you will have an open mind. Jesus speaks to us to this day. The Bible may already be written, but we can use His Words to edify the Church. Miracles still happen to this day. Whoever says that God is quiet today, is not listening. The prophecy is true and applies to this day. I know I can't prove this to you, so maybe you could believe out of faith. Believe me, it's embarrassing to say that I hear God audibly, because I get lable as crazy, not a believer of God. This is for your benefit. I'm not embarrassed to say I believe in God, just that He talks to me because I get so much flack over it. But God has told me prophecy that has come true several times! It's awesome that I have this relationship, but sad that people hate me for it!

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    1. Elizabeth, personal experience is not a valid test of truth. Apostle Peter, who actually DID have a vision and saw Jesus transfigured, said in 2 Peter 1:19 that the Word is more sure.

      And we have the prophetic word more fully confirmed, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts

      Elizabeth you might indeed be hearing voices but the voice is not Jesus, it is probably a demon. "And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light." 2 Corinthians 11:15

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  23. Hi, Elizabeth. Thank you for your commentary on Joel. I have a Charismatic background, but 7 or so years ago, the Lord brought me out of that scene (He lead me to an online expository teacher. I'd never heard scripture taught in any other way other than topically....you know, where the pastor thinks of a topic and cherry picks half-a-dozen verses to 'support' his premise). That teaching ruined me for the church I was in at the time, and I left soon after. I love my brothers and sisters in the Charismatic church, but I was taught so much in error while I was there.

    On the issue of dreams and visions. I had what I would call a vision. It was certainly supernatural. As I was seeing a story playing out in my mind (while my mother was praying. I was in my early 30s at that time), my mother was praying exactly what I was seeing.....in vivid detail. She was praying the scene AFTER I first saw it in my mind. I am married to an unbeliever (I married him when I was, too, an unbeliever). The vision was about his coming to Christ in genuine repentance. Do I believe the vision was of God? I certainly hope so. But I can't say it was from Him for certain. Supernatural doesn't equal godly as we all know there is more than one supernatural source. I can, however, say that if and when my husband receives saving faith in Christ, I can look back at that vision and thank God for the encouragement. However, nothing supersedes the authority of scripture, and certainly not my own personal experience. WHERE would any of us be, and upon what would our faith be grounded if we allowed our doctrine (or truth) to be founded on our own experience. I swear, if the bible declared there were no such things as red and green turtles and I got up one morning only to see a red and green turtle standing in front of me, I would choose not to believe it. That's how strongly I feel about the authority of scripture above any experience.

    So, again, thanks for the article. :o)

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Thirty Days of Jesus: Day 15, The gift of eternal life

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