I had a dream while at the Vineyard during those short but life-changing nine months. I did not understand what the dream was about. But I did know it was supernatural. It was very clear that it was supernatural but you are going to have to accept my word on that, because there is no way I can replicate the experience for you – because it was just that, a non-replicable experience. Now because it is a non-replicable experience, many in the church will dismiss it entirely, and give it far less importance than, say, the word of God. But answer me truthfully and tell me why it is any less important than the word of God? If God truly did give it, why is is being considered of lesser importance? By now, I’ve got some people frightened, thinking that I believe that a personal, subjective, revelation, is on par with the word of God (the Bible). I did not say it was on par. I merely asked, if God gave it, why is it considered any less important than the word of God itself, for don’t both come from God?
Now before I tell you the dream, and what happened as a result, tell me in your rational mind, why a dream, if it comes from God, should be given any less importance than the word of God. What right does any person have to ignore what God is saying, whether He chooses to speak via the word of God, or a dream or revelation, or even via the mouth of a donkey? If you are familiar with the word of God, you will know that a man named Balaam, who was acting against the purposes of God, was riding a donkey one day, and God spoke to him through the mouth of the donkey itself. Tell me, if you know, what right Balaam had in refusing to heed the voice of God, because it came through the mouth of a donkey. Was he justified in disobeying God, because it did not come through the pages of Scripture itself? And in this statement, we have a huge dilemma revealed, because half the church today will not listen to God by any other means (it seems) except the written word of God. They are categorically, either deceived, or in direct rebellion against the teachings of the word of God itself. And I say this to the shame of the church. These things ought not to be.
On account of this dilemma, we have new “doctrines” that have been created in the church (a “doctrine” in this context being equal to a “teaching”). The doctrine is (and I say this with confidence, being certain about the things I write), that God does not speak in this way any more because (a) the canon of Scripture is closed, and because (b) gifts of revelation have ceased. The first statement, that “the canon of Scripture is closed” is a correct statement. However, it is incorrectly applied to mean that God therefore does not speak via personal revelation today. If this interpretation is correct, God has clearly contradicted Himself, because the book of Joel, in Joel 2:28, says that in the last days, God will speak by dreams and visions and there shall be prophesying. Again, “new doctrines” must be created to overcome this verse, by those who still refuse to believe that God speaks via dreams and visions today. The second “new doctrine” created to overcome this verse is that the “last days” applies to Peter’s day – that is, the day of Pentecost, and around that time. But certainly not today, right? Absolutely and categorically incorrect. The word “last days,” based on the Scriptures themselves, refers to the entire time period starting from the time of Jesus’s first coming right up to His second coming.
The scribes and Pharisees were experts at interpreting the Scriptures to suit their own preconceived idea of how things ought to be. In many cases they were right. But in many other cases they seriously erred, as well. I say this to point out that many today who are very right in many great areas are not entirely right. Is it okay not be entirely right? Who can claim perfection? Only God Himself. However, is it okay to silence the voice of God who may be trying to speak to you a very personal and important message through dreams and revelations and words of prophecy? I say this to the shame of the church, for many in the church have done just that! The canon of Scripture may be closed all right, but the gifts of revelation have not in any way, shape, or form ceased. The argument that God does not speak via dreams or visions today because the canon of Scripture is closed is categorically false and is an affront to the very reason why God gives them. And what is the reason that God gives dreams and revelations and words of prophecy today? The reason has not changed, because God Himself has not changed (Malachi 3:6). The reason has almost always been to communicate important, life-changing, information to the people that He created. It is primarily for the saving of lives that God does this. Check the Scriptures and you will see that I am not bending them, but am speaking to you the truth in love. The reason in giving dreams and visions and words of prophecy never was to write the Scriptures, as some falsely claim. This claim is an incredible perversion of the teachings of the word of God itself and condemned by God.
The dream God gave me occurred very shortly after I started to fellowship with the Vineyard Christian Fellowship. In the dream, God laid out a time-line for my life which spanned from the day of my salvation experience (the day I received Christ as Savior, March 31, 1985) which at the time I had the dream in 1991 was about six years prior to that time. The dream spanned all the way from March of 1985 up to a day in the future, which, as of yet, I had absolutely no idea what that day was, but later, it turned out to be August 10, 2003. In the dream, God showed me several very specific events that would take place in the future. An entire section of the dream was devoted to a stage in my life I had not yet begun, which was my employment with Bell Northern Research and later Nortel Networks. How does God show you something that has not yet happened? He often does so by using veiled imagery. Read the book of Revelation and you’ll see what I mean. Is the book of Revelation any less important because it uses veiled imagery? No. It’s just as important as the didactic teaching presented in the Pauline epistles. The dream God gave me showed me this specific time-line of events. God showed me my wife (as of yet future at the time), my children (as of yet future at the time), my employment with Nortel Networks (as of yet future at the time), a very specific key event that would occur while employed at Nortel Networks (as of yet future at the time), and last, but not least of all, a very important person that I would meet that God would use to help me sort out a multitude of dreams and revelation that God would give me, a man by the name of Jim Fergusson (as of yet future, at the time). This man was not better than I, nor less than I, but was like a most beautiful, caring, and loving older brother to me, and has maintained this composure steadily since the day I met him in 1994 I believe it was. The time-line thus represented an approximate 18 year time span in my life, from March of 1985 up to August of 2003. Six of those years were in the past, and twelve of those years were as of yet to be fulfilled.
I did not understand some of the imagery that was presented to me at the time. It simply was beyond understanding. But when the events happened, then I understood very clearly that God had shown me everything in advance and it all made perfect sense. To a very large extent, this is also how much of prophetic literature is also written by God in the Scriptures. Much of it simply cannot be understood until the event, or events, described have taken place. It is left as an exercise for the reader to read the prophetic passages found in the book of Daniel and the book of Revelation (there are many other prophetic passages as well as these, including Isaiah, Ezekiel, Jeremiah, and, in fact, through and throughout the Bible, in various books and parts). We can look back now and understand that Psalm 22:1, in which we read, “My God, my God, why have You forsaken me?” was a prophetic passage that applied to Jesus who uttered those same words while on the cross (Matthew 27:46). But who would have understood it before Jesus died on the cross? No one. And this is the nature of prophetic literature as well as prophetic dreams. A great amount of it is utterly incomprehensible – until the event has happened, that is, and then everything seems to make perfect sense!