Rabbi Schneider - God in Our Dreams
So, what I'm gonna do now is I'm gonna take you on a survey through the Bible and show you several instances in which the Lord revealed himself to his people in a dream while they were sleeping at night. We're gonna look at what the Lord revealed to these different biblical figures at night and then we're gonna make application for our lives today. Beloved, the point is I want you to pay greater attention to your dreams. The Lord wants you to pay greater attention to your dreams. Now be careful, not all dreams are from God. You can hear that teaching from last week's broadcast, but some dreams are and it's these dreams that are from God that we're paying particular attention to beloved today.
I'm gonna start today's broadcast beloved, by looking at the dream that the Lord gave Abraham in the Book of Bereshit, Genesis chapter number 15 verse number 12 through 15. Beloved, the grass withers and the flowers fade, but the Word of God hallelujah, bless his name, abides forever. Here the Word of God as I begin reading in Genesis chapter 15 verse number 12: Now when the sun was going down, a deep sleep, get that, a deep sleep. So Abraham was sleeping. A deep sleep fell upon Abram and behold, terror and great darkness fell upon him. When did this happen? While he was sleeping, it was a dream state. And God said to Abram, know for certain that your descendents will be strangers in a land that is not there's. Where they'll be enslaved and oppressed 400 years, and the Lord goes on to reveal other things concerning the future of Israel.
But the first thing I wanna take note of is: how did God speak to Abraham? In a dream. Is God the same God today as he was in 30, all the way back in Abraham's time? He's the same God. If he's the same God and we're still human beings, then obviously dreams are still for today. In fact dreams should not be decreasing; they should be increasing, because the Holy Spirit has been poured out in Acts chapter 2. In this particular account, what God revealed to Abraham, to Abram at the time was Israel's future. The application that I wanna make for you beloved right now, is that sometimes the Lord will reveal future events to his sons and daughters in dreams, and he has a specific reason for doing it. Sometimes it's simply to prepare them. Sometimes the Lord will reveal something to you that's gonna happen in the future, and then you'll see it come to pass, and you'll just be astounded to know God's alive, he's real.
God showed me this in my sleep that this was gonna happen, and sure enough, just like the Lord showed me in my sleep, it happened. And what that does is it heightens your spiritual awareness, it heightens your sense of expectation. You begin to look to experience now, right here, right now while on the earth, because you know that God is a living God and he's revealing himself to you and speaking to you right now. Sometimes the Lord will reveal to you a future event that you'll see come to pass, just to make you know how real he is and how close he is to you.
I remember years ago, back when I was in Bible school, back in the 80's, we had a dog. He was a Beagle, and we really liked this dog, especially when he was a puppy, but, but he ran away or he left. We didn't really know what happened to him. He was gone for approximately four months. I had all forgotten about the dog, but one night beloved, after this dog was gone, missing, for all I knew, he was dead; I didn't know what happened to him. He is gone for four months, stopped thinking about him; one night I had a dream that we found our dog.
The next morning beloved, we received a phone call; they must have been able to track the dog to us by the tag that he had around his neck. Somebody not to far away, a farmer found my dog in his field. I was astounded beloved, that the Lord had revealed the future to me, and the night after he revealed to me that I was gonna find my dog; the farmer called me, he had found my dog. This isn't unique for me. I'm not sharing this with you just to talk to you about my own experiences; I'm just trying to encourage you, beloved that the same thing he did for me, he will do beloved, for some of you, many of you.
I wanna go now to the Book of Bereshit, the Book of Genesis chapter number 28. I'm gonna be reading there starting at the 10th verse, this is a story of Jacob. So we've looked at how the Lord revealed himself to Abraham in a dream. Now we're gonna see how the Lord revealed himself to Jacob. We say in Hebrew, Yaacov, in a dream. The point is beloved; dreams are not something that we should look at like space ships in outer space that you know aren't really real. No, God reveals himself in dreams to his people, and dreams are for you and I today. We should begin to pay attention to our dreams more than we are, many of us. We should begin to expect them. We should begin to wake up in the morning and say Lord, did I dream anything from you last night and begin to form the habit beloved, of recalling our dreams and paying attention to our dreams.
And as we do, we're gonna become more like Enoch beloved, that walked with God and ascended up with him beloved, into the heavens. Reading now from the Book of Genesis, the Book of Bereshit, chapter number 28 beginning in verse number 10: Then Jacob, then Yaacov departed from Beersheba and went toward Haran. And he came to a certain place and spent the night there, because the sun had set. And he took one of the stones in that place, and put it under his head, and lay down in that place and he had, listen now, a dream. Let me say it again: and he had a dream. And he had a dream, and behold, the ladder was set on the earth with its top reaching to the heaven, and behold, the angels of God were ascending and descending on it.
So he has this dream, he puts his head on a rock, he goes to sleep, he has a dream in the same way God's gonna give many of you dreams. And in the dream beloved, he sees these angels ascending and descending upon a ladder. And behold in verse number 13: The Lord stood above it and said: I am the Lord; I am Yahweh, the God of your father, the Elohim of Abraham, and the God of Isaac. The land which you lie, I will give to you and your descendents. And then he goes on and behold, in verse number 15: I am with you and I will keep you wherever you go, and I will bring you back to this land, for I will not leave you until I have done for you what I have promised. Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said: surely the Lord is in this place and I did not know it.
Beloved, Jacob gained the assurance that God was with him through a dream at night. Up to that point, Jacob probably felt like an orphan. He probably felt alone, but when he went to sleep that night, and laid his head on the rock, and he saw the angels of God ascending and descending on the ladder from heaven to earth, and from earth to heaven; God was revealing to him, you know what? I am connected to you right where you're at. I am connected to your life. Heaven, Jacob is connected to, there is an open door between you and me. That's what the ladder meant, it was a connection between God in heaven and Jacob on earth. And Jacob learned that God was with him. That's what the Lord said to him, I am with you Jacob, and I will be with you wherever you go, and the Lord said I will accomplish in your life all that I promise, and Jacob gained the assurance beloved, of God's presence in him and of God's fulfilling that which he had promised him in the future to do.
Jacob beloved, received the encouragement and assurance from God, and he built an altar at that place, Amen, unto the Lord. Isn't that an awesome thing beloved, that the Father can encourage us in our lives if we pay attention to our dreams? I remember years ago beloved, in my life I had a dream. And in this dream all of a sudden, I felt tremendous pain in my soul. The Lord allowed me to feel some of the inner turmoil that I was experiencing inside; I wasn't even fully aware of it until this night, that suddenly in my sleep, it was like the Lord opened up my heart, and allowed me to experience some of the pain, and the turmoil, and the difficulty that I was feeling inside. And then in the dream believe beloved, I heard an angel speak to me.
You say, "how do you know it was an angel"? All I know beloved is that it was. I don't know how I knew that it was, all I know beloved, is that when it happened, I knew it was an angel. And the angel said to me this; he said to me, you're on the right path. And the Lord was telling me, even though life is not easy, even though life is hard, the Lord said I want you to know you're on the right path. Just like Jacob that was going through a difficult time in life. Remember Jacob had fled his home, because he was afraid for his life, because or Esau. And here he was, he had left his mom, he had left his dad, he had left his family, he had left everything that he had, and here he is sleeping alone beloved, in the desert, using a rock as a pillow, and yet God appears to him and says I am with you and I'll accomplish for you all that I purpose to do.
And so it is for some of you beloved; you may be going through a hard time right now, but that doesn't mean that the Lord isn't with you. It doesn't mean that God has forsaken you. It doesn't mean that the future and the destiny that he has for you won't come to pass, just like it was with Jacob, and just like I experienced that night when the angels said to me in the midst of my feeling, the torment and the pain, and the angels said to me, you're on the right path.
Beloved, I wanna encourage you, pay attention to your dreams at night. Remember last week I read from the Book of Job chapter 33 where one of Job's counselors, Elihu, that was not rebuked of the Lord for giving wrong counsel, said to Job: The Lord speaks once, yea twice to man, when man is sleeping in his bed, fast and sound asleep; he said but God is speaking and people aren't paying attention. And I know that there's some of you that are watching my broadcast right now, God has spoken to you in your sleep and you're not even aware that he has, because you weren't expecting him to, you weren't paying attention. Some of you remember a dream that you had and you thought oh, that was just a funny dream I had, oh that was just a strange dream, it didn't mean anything. For some of you beloved, some of those dreams did mean something. Some of those dreams were from the Lord.
We need to start paying attention and we need beloved, to start making, making a habit of writing down when we wake up in the morning what our dreams were and asking for understanding. You see beloved, the language of dreams is symbolic. Often times in a dream the Lord will reveal something to us that is symbolic in nature. For example, if we consider the life of Joseph, we read in the Book of Genesis chapter 37 verse number 9, that Joseph has another dream. Let's read, so we've looked at Abraham had a dream, right? We looked at Jacob having a dream, and now I'm going to the Book of Bereshit once again, and I'm looking at another biblical figure. Notice how many people God is speaking to in dreams in the Hebrew Bible, and he's doing the same thing today beloved, with you and I; we need to be paying more attention. So I'm reading now about the life of Joseph, Genesis 37 verse number 9. Now he's speaking of Joseph had still another dream, and related it to his brothers and said: Lo, I have had still another dream, and behold the sun, and moon, and eleven stars were bowing down to me, and he relayed it to his father and his brother.
Well we know the story: that the sun, and the moon and the stars were symbolic of Joseph's brother and his mom and dad, that they were gonna bow down to him. The question we ask is: if the Lord was showing Joseph in the dream, and also in the earlier dream that Joseph had in Genesis chapter 35 verse number 5 through 7, where the sheaves are bowing down to Joseph's sheave. If the meaning of the dream is that the Lord was showing Joseph that his brothers, and father and mother would bow down to him, remember which eventually happened when Joseph was sold into a slave into Egypt. And there was a famine in the land of Canaan, and Joseph's brothers went to Egypt to buy grain, and Joseph then revealed himself to his brothers, and provided for them in the land of Egypt during the famine that was in Canaan by giving them in Egypt, the land of Goshen and supplying there needs, so they literally did eventually come to Joseph and bow down to him.
The question is if the Lord was revealing to Joseph in these two dreams in Bereshit, Genesis 37, why did the Lord communicate to Joseph in the picture of sheaves bowing down to Joseph, and then in the picture of the sun, the moon and stars bowing down to Joseph? Why did the Lord just not show Joseph directly his father and brothers bowing down em? Why did the Lord just not speak directly, and clearly, and literally to Joseph? Why did he use this figurative symbolic language, sheaves, and sun, and moon, and stars? Why symbols? If you think about it, it's no different that when Yeshua was on earth and he spoke to people in parables. Why did Yeshua not just speak to people directly? Why speak to them in parables? Remember, Yeshua said: the sower went out to sow the seed, remember? He said and some fell seed fell on hard ground, and some seed fell on, on ground where thorns and thistles choked it out.
Let me read this parable to you, and an explanation that Yeshua gave for the reason that he was speaking in parables that relates now beloved, to our study of dreams and our understanding as to why the Father speaks to us prophetically in symbols rather than just speaking to us directly. Hear the Word of God now as I read from the Book of Mark, beginning in verse number 30, verse number 30, Mark 4 verse 30. He said: How shall we picture the kingdom of God, or by what parable shall we present it? It is like a mustard seed, which when sown upon the soil, though it is smaller than all the seeds that are upon it; yet when it is grown, grows up and becomes larger than all the garden plants, and from large branches so that the birds of the air can nest under the shade. And it says: And with many such parables, he was speaking the Word of God to them as they were able to hear it. And he did not speak to them without, listen to this: he did not speak to them, Mark 4:34: He did not speak to them without a parable, but he's explaining everything privately to his own disciples.
Now listen to this, Yeshua is speaking to them about the kingdom of God, and he says that the kingdom of God is sown unto different types of soil. And after he explains this, the disciples come and they ask him, they say to us Lord, tell us the meaning of the parable. Let me read it for you. I wanna read Mark number 4 now, beginning in verse number 3. Listen to this Yeshua said: Behold, the sower went out to sow, and it came about that as he was sowing, some seed fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate it up. And other seed fell on rocky ground, where it did not have much soil, and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of soil. And after the sun had risen, it was scorched, and because it had no root, it withered away. And other seed fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked it, and it yielded no crop.
Now listen: we know what this parable means, because we've heard it taught on, we've heard it preached on. But imagine the disciples that had no explanation for it yet. They'd never heard anybody preach on it yet. They'd never heard any, anybody explain it. And Yeshua says now listen to this: the sower went out to sow the seed, and some seed fell on dry ground and hard ground, and they're scratching hard, what, what, what is he saying, what exactly is he trying to say to us? And then he continues on in verse number 9, and he was saying: He who has ears to hear, let him hear. And as soon as he was alone in verse number 10, his followers, along with the twelve, began asking him.
Get that now; his followers along with the twelve begin, began asking him. Why did they ask? Because they didn't fully understand, they needed revelation. They heard the parable, it was all symbolic. The parables were symbolic. And so they begin asking him about the parables. In verse 11 it says: And he was saying to them, to you it has been granted, you know the mystery, the kingdom of God. But those who are on the outside get everything in parables. And later again, they were asking him the meaning of the parables and as they asked about the meaning of the parables; Jesus explained it to them.
Why do you think Jesus, the Scriptures said, without a parable, he did not speak? Why do you think he spoke so much in parables? Well there were several reasons; some was to conceal truth from those whom he didn't want to have revelation. So he says here in verse number 11 and 12: To you it has been the mystery of the kingdom of God, but those who are on the outside get everything in parables, verse number 12, in order that while seeing they might not see and while, let me read it again in verse 12: In order that while seeing, they may, they may see and not perceive, they won't understand. And while hearing, they may hear and not understand, less they return and be forgiven.
See, Yeshua was actually concealing truth from some people, which gets back to my last series on Identity and Destiny. But the other reason beloved, that Yeshua was speaking in parables was because he wanted, listen now, to engage his disciples in discovery. He wanted them to seek to understand what does this mean? You see he wanted to draw his disciples into the process of understanding what was being said to them. Isn't this what happened to Peter in the Book of Acts? Remember, Peter was on the roof; we'll look at this a little bit later in the Book of Acts. And the Bible said he was hungry and he fell into a sleep, a trance. And while he was in this sleep-like state on the roof, a sheet was lowered and there were all kinds of unkosher animals. And then Peter heard the voice say to him in the vision, in the dream of the night: Peter, take, kill and eat.
And remember Peter woke up and he didn't know what does it mean that he's seeing these unkosher animals, and the voice says: Peter, take, kill and eat. And in, he says, he says that Peter was pondering, he was looking to the Lord, what does this mean. And while Peter was wondering what this vision of the night, what the dream meant; suddenly Cornelius' servant knocks on Peter's door and says I want you to come and share the Gospel with my master, Cornelius. And remember, Cornelius was a Gentile. And then Peter understood the meaning of the vision of the dream of the night, that Gentiles weren't to be considered by him to be unclean, but he was to share the Gospel with them. And so it is beloved ones with our dreams at night.
Even as Joseph dreamed about the sheaves bowing down to him, the sun, moon and stars bowing to him, and it was symbolic and he had to seek to understand; so beloved in your life. You and I need to be seeking to understand the symbolic nature of our dreams. When we wake up in the morning, we need to be writing our dreams down and asking the Father, Lord: what do these symbols mean, what did this dream mean? And as you do that beloved, you're gonna be brought into a deeper intimate walk with God, just like Enoch did beloved, and you're gonna discover God's will, his purpose in your life, his love for you beloved, in a greater way. Beloved, listen to what I'm saying and mark my words: to disregard your dreams is to disregard God. This is Rabbi Schneider saying to you, God bless you and shalom.