“A dream is within the domain of intellectual, ethical and spiritual experience.”

The start of our study on visions will start tomorrow. I want to share some insight from a man who I have admired for many years; that would be Dr. Merrill f. Unger.

Merrill Frederick Unger (1909–1980) was a Bible commentator, scholar, and theologian. He earned his A.B. and Ph.D. degrees at Johns Hopkins University, and his Th.M. and Th.D. degrees at Dallas Theological Seminary. After serving as a pastor at several churches, Unger taught for a year at Gordon College. For the next 19 years, until 1967 – at which time he became professor emeritus, Unger was professor of Old Testament studies at Dallas Theological Seminary. Unger was a prolific writer who authored some 40 books many of which are well received in Christian colleges and seminaries. Unger was also a well-known Biblical archaeologist.

I would like to share his perspective on dreams from his dictionary.* “A dream is within the domain of intellectual, ethical and spiritual experience.” Living in an earthly body, we have as the background of our being, a dim, region, out of which our thinking labors forth to the daylight, and in which much goes forward, especially in the condition of sleep, of which we can only come to a knowledge by looking back afterward.

Not only many poetical and musical inventions, but, moreover, many scientific solutions, and spiritual perceptions, have been conceived and born from the life of genius awakened in sleep.”

“Another significant aspect of dreaming is the ethical. In the dream one’s true nature manifests itself, breaking through the pressure of external relations and simulation of the waking life. From the selfishness of the soul, its selfish impulses, its restlessness stimulated by selfishness, are formed in the heart all kinds sinful images, of which the main is ashamed when he awakens, and on account of which remorse sometimes disturbs the dreamer. The Scriptures appear to hold the man responsible, if not for dreaming, at least for the character of the dream (Lev. 15:16; Deut. 23:10).”

“A third significant aspect of dreams is the spiritual: they may become the means of a direct and special intercourse of God with man. The witness of conscience may make itself objective and expanded within the dream-life into perceptible transactions between God and man. Thus God warned Abimelech (Gen. 20) and Laban (31:24) in a dream, and the wife of Pilate warned her husband against being concerned in the death of the just one.”

“The conviction of the sinfulness and nothingness of man is related by Eliphaz as realized in a dream (Job.4:12-21).From 1 Sam. 28:6 we infer that God did at times answer sincere inquirers. Concerning the future, the dreams of Nebuchadnezzar and Daniel are examples.” 024-024-daniel-interprets-nebuchadnezzars-dream-full

According to Num. 12:6 dreams and visions are the two forms of the prophetic revelations of God. In Acts 2, Peter sees the outpouring of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost as the fulfillment of Joel’s Prophecy 2:28. That the coming of the Spirit was not relegated to the Apostles and their contemporaries is made clear by Peter’s statement in Acts 2:39, “The promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.”  What do you think—come on say something!

*Unger’s Bible Dictionary. Copyright 1980 Moody Press.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Chris
    Jul 02, 2013 @ 23:01:26

    Reblogged this on Wings of the Wind and commented:
    Manny completes his study of dreams before going on to a study of visions…

    Reply

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