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Does God Speak to Us in Dreams?

Have you ever wondered does God speak to us in dreams? These are the types of questions Christians ask all the time. And there are clear answers in the Bible about dreams, visions, and other types of prophetic revelation.

If you are reading this post you are either someone who dreams a lot or someone who desires to dream.

And I am not talking about dreams as in ambitious desires coming to pass. But the kind of dreams that happen when we are fast asleep.

Have you ever wondered does God speak to us in dreams? Let's take a deep look into the Bible and see what it says about visions of the night.

Key Takeaways

• God speaks to us in dreams in the Bible all throughout the Old and New Testament.

• 1/3 of the Bible contains dreams and visions.

• God used dreams to guide, warn, and prepare His people.

• Not all dreams are from God. Some are from our soul or the enemy. We need discernment.

• We should write down our dreams and pray for interpretation from the Holy Spirit.

• Dreams have inspired many inventions and works throughout history.

• As Christians we should be open to God speaking through dreams while being discerning and checking with Scripture

Everybody Dreams – Christians & Non-Christians

Even if you don’t remember your dreams you are still dreaming at night. The average person sleeping a full 8 hours will dream between one to two hours!

Most of our dreams happen in REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep. It’s like our eyes are moving to watch the dream. Pretty cool how God made us!

I’m one of those people that have a lot of dreams at night. I can still vividly remember certain dreams I had even as a child.

But as Christians what are we supposed to do with that? Does God speak in dreams? Or should we just completely ignore these night riddles?

I really want to help those who are asking that question. It’s important we understand what the Bible says about it and how we can be a good steward.

Before I unwrap everything I will flat out tell you right now….YES, God speaks in dreams. It is just one of the many ways God speaks to us prophetically.

But I believe it is important for us to learn about dreams because it is easy for us to toss out a dream thinking it was nothing when God is trying to tell us something.

And He said, “Hear now My words: If there is a prophet among you, I the Lord will make Myself known to him in a vision And I will speak to him in a dream. – Numbers 12:6

Dream Example

When I was 19 I was in ministry school and I had a short simple dream. It goes like this:

I was sitting at one of the class tables with students all around me. I then grab this very red lipstick and start putting it on. Instead of putting it just on my lips I went way over my lips. I looked like a hot mess but I thought I looked good. All my other classmates were just staring at me. Then one of them said, “Why are you doing that?” (In a grossed out way)

That was the end of the dream. I woke up and thought….”Now, that was a pizza dream! So, random!”

I head to school and we started the day with worship. As I entered into worship I was reminded of the dream and I literally laughed it off…” what a stupid dream…it doesn’t mean anything!”

Then out of the blue…I heard the Lord so clear say to me, “Melissa, you took the lipstick outside of where it needs to be. You are doing the same thing when you are speaking things out to catch the eye of those around you. You do not need to impress others, but be your true self”

I was floored! There was no way I was even thinking that. I then realized I was trying to impress my fellow classmates and tried to be something I was not. I repented and asked the Lord to help me to be true to myself.

Here I was so quick to toss a dream out when God was trying to show me an area of my life that He wanted to correct.

Now, let’s take a deeper look in scripture on how God speaks to us in dreams!

Fun Dream Facts

1/3 of the Bible is dreams and visions!! That’s a lot of seeing!

21 dreams are fully recorded in the Bible, with 10 just being in the book of Genesis.

Dreams have also been the inspiration or the key factor in inventions! Here are just a few:

  • DNA
  • The Sewing Machine
  • Google
  • The periodic table of elements
  • The Structure of The Atom

If you want to check out more inventions from dreams then take a peek at BedGuru’s post

They have also inspired authors and musicians. Like the Beatles song “Yesterday”

What Does The Bible Say About Dreams? Are Dreams From God?

Bible open on the desk

Before we break it down into Old Testament and New Testament I want to clarify some stuff. I am showing you just what scripture says about dreams. Not what it is saying about visions or trances or other prophetic abilities.

If you would like to further your study on this topic, then check out my extensive post on this topic: What does the Bible say about dreams?

What Does the Old Testament Say About Dreams?

The Old Testament is chockfull of awesome information about dreams. He used them to guide, warn, and prepare His people.

It’s important to note that not everyone who had dreams in the Bible was following after God. Some were gentiles or the enemy of God’s people. This goes to show you that God can speak to whoever and however He likes. He even used a donkey…

Here is a chart of people in the Old Testament that had dreams:

AbimelchGenesis 20
JacobGenesis 28, 31
LabanGenesis 31
Joseph Genesis 37
Cupbearer Genesis 40
BakerGenesis 40
Pharaoh Genesis 41
Midianite Judges 7
Solomon 1 Kings 3
Nebuchadnezzar Daniel 2
Daniel Daniel 7
Dreams In The Old Testament
The baker's dream in the Bible
The Baker’s Dream

Some key insights into dream scriptures:

God is making it clear to His people that when he talks He talks in visions and dreams, but He shows a distinction between prophets and Moses who He talks to face to face.

Showing the difference between a gift and a relationship with Him.

And He said, “Hear now My words: If there is a prophet among you, I the Lord will make Myself known to him in a vision And I will speak to him in a dream. – Numbers 12:6

Here is a clear picture of how God speaks to us in a dream to guide us and protect us from our own folly.

These can be warning dreams where God is warning us of that something we are doing or going to do can lead us down a bad path.

“For God speaks once,
And even twice, yet no one notices it [including you, Job].

“In a dream, a vision of the night [one may hear God’s voice],
When deep sleep falls on men
While slumbering upon the bed,

Then He opens the ears of men
And seals their instruction,
That He may turn man aside from his conduct,

And keep him from pride;
He holds back his soul from the pit [of destruction],
And his life from passing over into Sheol (the nether world, the place of the dead). Job 33:14-8

Most people who have studied or function in prophetic are familiar with Joel 2:18 (also in Acts 2:17) It’s pretty clear and self-explanatory that we are in the time of God’s Spirit being poured out. We should be seeing in the spirit.

“It shall come about after this
That I shall pour out My Spirit on all mankind;

And your sons and your daughters will prophesy,
Your old men will dream dreams,
Your young men will see visions. ” Joel 2:28

The author of Ecclesiastes is giving us some good advice here on dreams. He’s basically saying when your life is busy and lots of stuff is going on (aka stress) you can tend to dream a lot about those issues.

This does not mean these dreams are from God or that He can’t use them to help us grow.

These dreams would be classified as a soul dream. This is a good reminder of how we need to always take our dreams to the Lord in prayer.

A dream comes when there are many cares,
    and many words mark the speech of a fool. Ecclesiastes 5:3

In Jeremiah, we see a whole different view on dreams and how prophets were corrupting it by giving false dreams. Basically, they were manipulating the situation to win favor with the king.

No matter what we dream we should never use it for selfish gain and we should NEVER LIE and say we dreamed something when we didn’t.

I’m going to call it out as it is…That’s flat out witchcraft.

“Hear this, I am against those who have prophesied false and made-up dreams,” says the Lord, “and have told them and have made My people err and go astray by their lies and by their reckless boasting; yet I did not send them or command them nor do they benefit and enhance [the life of] these people in the slightest way,” says the Lord. Jeremiah 23:32

What Does the New Testament Say About Dreams?

Pilate's wife telling her husband her dream
Pilate’s wife telling her husband her dream

Here is a chart of people in the New Testament that had dreams:

JosephMatthew 1-2
The MagiMatthew 1
Pilate’s wifeMatthew 27
Paul The ApostleThroughout the book of Acts
(Visions of the night)
Dreams In The New Testament

As we can see both in the Old Testament, and New Testament God used dreams to direct His people. Both go beyond dream into visions, and other prophetic utterances.

Interpreting Dreams in the Bible

As we can see the Bible has quite a few people who had dreams but also quite a few people who understood dreams.

Joseph, for instance, is a prime example. His dream interpretations were not just a testament to his prophetic gifts but also precursors to his rise to prominence in Egypt (Genesis 41).

Similarly, Daniel’s reputation as a dream interpreter led him to the courts of Babylonian and Persian kings, where he provided divine insight into their puzzling dreams (Daniel 2 & 4).

Joseph Interpreting dreams in the Bible. God speaks in dreams!

The Midianites, too, had a significant dream encounter that God used to encourage Gideon in his mission to deliver Israel from their hands (Judges 7:13-15).

Even Pilate’s wife was warned in a dream to have nothing to do with the condemnation of Jesus Christ (Matthew 27:19), underscoring that God can speak through dreams to anyone, irrespective of their social or spiritual status.

Yet, as Genesis 40:8 reminds us, “Do not interpretations belong to God?”

This profound truth underscores that no matter how well we may come to understand the symbolic language of dreams and even Biblical symbolism, the ultimate interpretation lies with God Himself.

Our human interpretations, no matter how well-intended, or how good it sounds are inherently limited. We must humbly acknowledge this limitation and always seek the Lord for wisdom and guidance when attempting to decipher these dreams.

This is where the Holy Spirit comes into play.

As believers, we’re blessed with the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit, our Helper, who guides us into all truth (John 16:13).

He opens us up to His understanding and provides discernment, enabling us to comprehend the often complex symbolism of dreams within a biblical framework.

With that said we should always approach dream interpretation prayerfully, allowing the Holy Spirit to guide us through His Word.

Dreams in Church History

As you can tell from what I wrote above dreams were a big deal in every dispensation of the Bible. But it doesn’t stop there! Hebrews 13:8 Taking a look outside of the Bible and into church history, you will see so many cool stories of how God used dreams.

Here are a few just to get you going!

  • Polycarp – He was an early church father, had a vision of his pillow burning before his martyrdom, which he took as a prophetic symbol of his impending death.

  • Augustine – He heard a childlike voice telling him to “take up and read” which directed him to a key passage he applied to his life.

  • Irenaeus – In his writing Against Heresies, Iranaeus speaks on various different dream within the Bible.

  • Justin Martyr – He believed dreams came from both wicked spirits and God.

  • Gregory of Nazianzen –  He wrote, “And God summoned me from boyhood in my nocturnal dreams, and I arrived at the very goals of wisdom” (S. Gregorii Theologi, Carminum, Liber II, 994-95O)

  • Clement – Encouraged studying dreams for divine messages and spiritual growth

  • Constantine – Converted after seeing vision of a flaming cross in the sky

I also enjoy what James Goll says about the topic,

“After the deaths of the apostles and the passing of the New Testament period, church leaders during the first few centuries of the church remained quite open to dreams and visions as a valid avenue of God’s communication with man.

Many of them wrote of dreams and visions in a positive manner and some even recorded their personal dream experiences. Polycarp, bishop of Smyrna and a man who was a contemporary of the apostles and was ordained by them, was martyred for his faith in AD 155.

While praying shortly before his death, Polycarp received a vision in which the pillow under his head caught fire. He understood that this image was a premonition from God of his own impending death.” Read more

Does God Speak to us in Dreams? Yes, He Does!

I hope you can see from everything I have written that God speaks in dreams! It is an active way God speaks both in the past and in our present time.

It’s important that we take our dreams and write them down. Then start to pray and ask God to show us what He is saying or if we should ignore the dream altogether.

If you would like to learn more on this topic of dreams or the prophetic make sure to check out these posts below!

Have you ever wondered the ways to hearing the voice of God? Well, let's dive into the Bible and see!
Get breakthrough in your night, by learning how to get rid of nightmares. These biblical tools will help you gain back the night!
Have you ever wondered does God speak to us in dreams? He does! And we will take a look into the Bible to learn more
Does God speak to us in Dreams? There are lots of ways God speaks but what about Dreams? We will take a deep look into scripture to find out.

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Rhonda Medlock

Thursday 17th of March 2022

When I was young I had dreams. I didn't know what they meant at the time. Later when someone died. It fit my dream. Later in years I became saved and baptized. Recently dreams are coming to me plus able to interpret the dream. For example, I saw this vision 3 times in a row. I dreamed of two Jesus one pure with a bright white rob. Standing in white air. Jesus' right hand was extended pointing downward. A bright light at each shoulder going downward, toward his feet. Your eye was drawn downward. The other Jesus was what he was guiding you to see. This Jesus was a pleasant look. His robe was dull, off-white. His shash was red and black checked. He was on one knee. My interpretation of this dream. The bright glowing Jesus was the true almighty savior. The second Jesus was fake, a false prophet claiming to be Jesus. The red and black sash, blood, evil, and death. Seeing this 3 times. 1/3 of the population is mentioned in the Bible's relevation. I want to think you for this article. I have had other dreams, visions, and strong intuition pertaining to the church. The church isn't too happy with me. When I read the Bible verse Numbers 12:6 It was as though Jesus was sending me a message. Thank You again, I Felt unworthy to pray I felt destroyed, and God would never forgive me for telling the church. What I was feeling and seeing. Thank You again. This article has given me hope.


Tuesday 19th of November 2019

In 1976, I was taking a nap on my sofa. I was 23 years old at the time. I had a dream that changed my life forever. A voice spoke to me in this dream and said to me "You are Gods Chosen One"! I did not see a face or anything. I only heard a voice say these words very clearly "You are Gods Chosen One." When I woke up, I knew something had happened to me! I did not have a church home. I did not even have a bible in my home! My life changed completely! The Lord used me in many ways after that dream. I spoke in many churches and I have a very strong sense of Right and Wrong! My faith is unmovable, unshakable, and everlasting. Why God chose me, I don't know!


Thursday 9th of May 2019

Yes! What a wonderful and informative article. I'm a vivid dreamers, too, and I keep a journal. It really helps.

D'ondra M Howard

Wednesday 8th of May 2019

I am a dreamer as well. I know when its from the Lord, when I wake and remember every single detail in it. I am blessed to have an uncle who interprets them, so I usually get the interpretation from him unless the Lord gives it to me.


Wednesday 8th of May 2019

I am a vivid dreamer. I have had dreams that are prophetic then dreams that are just nonsense. But my issue is more in deciphering if it’s me or God.