This morning at Raintree we looked at Daniel chapter 2 in detail, comparing man’s kingdom to God’s. The full message will be available by clicking HERE sometime today.
There are two little side-notes that I did not include in this morning’s message, primarily because of time constraints, so I thought I’d put them here. Two questions, with two brief answers.
Side-Note #1: Does God speak through dreams today?
In Scripture there are multiple occasions where God spoke through dreams: Joseph in Genesis 37, Joseph and Mary in Matthew 2, Solomon, and of course, today’s example—King Nebuchadnezzar. In fact, in Acts 2:17, Peter brings up a prophecy of Joel that has now been fulfilled in the last days, and he brings up God using dreams. So, I don’t think we can say with absolute certainty that God no longer speaks through dreams. There’s no decisive proof of that in Scripture.
BUT, I also think it’s important to note that we don’t need to have dreams to have understanding about who God is or what we’re to do. In other words, I don’t think we should expect to have dreams from God, nor even seek them out. Why? Because we have the Word of God. This is our primary source for truth, our only infallible source for truth. This is what the Holy Spirit uses to teach us and change us.
So I’d just be very cautious about reading too much into our dreams. And never will our dreams, even if they are from God, contradict what he’s already revealed in His Word. If you ever have a dream you think God might be using to reveal something to you, prayerfully think through it, especially in light of God’s Word, then remember that every time God does speak through a dream in Scripture, the meaning is very clear. That’s an important thing to take note of: God does not speak without clarity.
Side-Note #2: Does the Bible forbid inter-racial marriage?
Daniel 2:43 brings up the fourth kingdom in Daniel’s dream (Rome) and says that part of why Rome will fall is because there are people of different nations within Rome intermarrying.
The problem here with Rome, though, as far as mixing with one another in marriage, was not merely that they were marrying people of different races. That’s a misunderstanding more common than you think, that the Old Testament somehow forbids marrying people of different races just because they’re of a different race. That was NOT it. The problem was not different races; the problem was different gods. Even when you actually go to the law in Deuteronomy chapter 7, you see the purpose of the command not to intermarry.
Deuteronomy 7:3-4 (a command for the Israelites in regard to the seven nations they’re about to drive out of the Promise Land):
“Do not intermarry with them. Do not give your daughters to their sons or take their daughters for your sons, for they will turn your children away from following me to serve other gods, and the Lord’s anger will burn against you and will quickly destroy you.”
Maybe no one reading this has ever questioned the legitimacy of interracial relationships, but I still think it’s important to be clear on this. The point was not different races; it was different gods. There is nothing unbiblical about interracial relationships.