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Unimportant Dreams

We take less notice of dreams than the ancients, because we are more sophisticated. One reason why Judaism, and Christianity which sprang from it, were so much an advance on pagan religions is that they attached comparatively little importance to dreams.

True, there are 116 references to dreams in the Old Testament, but most are clustered in two sections: 52 in Genesis in the early patriarchal period and 29 in the Book of Daniel. Only 14 dreams are specifically recorded. In each case, moreover, God is the initiator for particular purposes and his meaning is plain--no need for the interpretative dream-books of paganism. As Daniel told Nebuchadnezzar, only God discloses the secrets of dreams. ... The message of the Bible is that God regards dreaming as a secondary mode of communication.

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