Context for Dream Interpretation

In a dream there’s no need for us to speak a word we don’t know over someone, because God has already spoken that word with His dream. What we need to do is dissect what that dream means and context is often very important to truly understand the dream’s meaning.

Had you known that I was struggling with shame and depression for my sin, you may have been able to interpret my spider dream a lot more easily. But since you didn’t know that, you had to try a lot harder than I did to find the interpretation.

Likewise, while Joseph’s dream interpretations were given to him from God, he still understood the dream’s meaning because he knew the context in which the dreams were dreamed and the people who dreamed them. He  partially knew the cupbearer’s interpretation because he knew that the cupbearer was currently in jail and he knew what the cupbearer’s job was. The same is true about the baker. Their roles in society and their current situation illuminated the meaning of the dream.

Likewise, Joseph might have partially understood that Pharaoh’s dream was about famine, because if such a thing was coming, Pharaoh would be an important person for God to alert. If the local ruler isn’t alarmed about the situation, death will be prevalent.

In my spiritual gifts class I had a woman share a reoccurring dream with us all so we could dissect it. We drew pictures of the dream up on the dry erase board and tried to find the meaning, but there were just too many ways to interpret it. Finally I asked the person to give us details as to what was going on in their life at the time. She explained a huge decision she had been trying to make and the interpretation of her dream instantly became clear.

It’s not that God can’t give us the interpretation without context, it’s just that context often plays an important role in discerning dreams. Had this woman not given us context, we actually could have interpreted her dream as a message from God. After she explained the context though, we discerned it was actually a dream from a demonic source. Satan was disguising himself an angel of light (2 Cor 11:14). That’s just how important context can be in dream interpretation.

Want to continue the conversation? Take the long journey with my book/audiobook, The Rush and the Rest, or take a shorter path with my condensed version, Fantasy IRL.

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