Arnold

Jarard Arnold Frazer English 102 1 December 2009 Prophecy & Dreams: Merging Imagination & Reality In recent years, there are movies (The Knowing, Matrix, Déjà Vu, etc) discussing the idea of prophecy and dreams coinciding within each other; or saying that either or are to be taken far more serious than being a mere tool of entertaining the mind. Many people can say this sudden emergence of the concept of prophecy, especially in the United States, is only an excuse that one can use to explain why particular events are occurring. According to Jesus Christ in the book of Matthew 26:4, he states, “And ye shall hear of wars and rumors of war: see that ye not be troubled for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.” (The King James Open Bible Expanded Edition) Paraphrasing 1 Corinthians 13: 2 and 14: 1, prophecy is a gift. This “gift” is given by a greater creature than the one receiving it. Thus when one accepts this gift, it merely opens a door way to an almost awkward view on life in comparison to a “normal individual”. The article “Ancient Near Eastern Prophecy from an Anthropological Perspective” written by Lester L. Grabbe found in “Prophecy in Its Ancient Near Eastern Context in Biblical, And Arabian Perspectives”, speaks about prophets (users or obtainers of the gift of prophecy) living bizarre lives; symbolizing that a divine being selected this person for something specific. (22) Grabbe references Isaiah 20 when speaking about the prophet Isaiah roaming the city of Jerusalem naked based on instruction given to him by his God. In agreement with this odd state of behavior, Grabbe also mentions Ngundeng (22) of Nuer, Africa (Language and Communication a Cross-Cultural Encyclopedia p. xvi) only eating tobacco, mud, grass, and dung. It is also stated that he has even found sitting on a pointed stake.

Arnold

To take this idea of prophecy a step further, dreams are also considered to be a method of prophecy as well. Of course dreams are a different story because not everything is strictly black and white. There is an array of various colors and images; some human, non-human, or not even of this very planet. One can read the various book of the Bible as a reference for dreams not able to solely conform to the physical attributes of reality. Dreams are mental movies created by things surrounding daily life. These at times, have an alternate meaning than what the object, person, or place actually signifies in reality. The ways in which they are presented depends on the person who receives it. Majority of these are written down, verbally distributed, acted out, or even placed in artwork. In the end, the concept of prophecy is simply being able to obtain enlightenment, instruction, provision, or comfort from a higher being than oneself. The book of Joel 2: 28, 29 reads, “And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days I will pour my spirit.” (The King James Open Bible Expanded Version). In order to assure that these scriptures are true and extremely evident in this day and age, consider individuals such as: Edgar Cayce, Nostradamus, Irvin Baxter, and Jeanne Dixon. Even within the Bible itself, there are various dreams in the form of prophecy; even today people still utilize prophecy whether they realize it or not.

Arnold

Based on the examples of the prophet Isaiah and Ngundeng, a visual metaphor (or physical action) is simply one concept in which prophecy is used; as stated earlier, dreams are a form of prophecy. In “The Interpretation of Dreams” by Sigmund Freud, he (Freud) mentions that writers after Aristotle did not consider dreams to be associated with that of psychology, but rather to be observed “…as an inspiration of divine origin…” On the other hand, Aristotle actually considered dreams to be nothing other than an ungodly or demonic influence. Nonetheless, the basic concept of dreams appear to be in agreement with the ideas (instructions and predictions) that prophecy are to be used for; which are “warnings, or to tell futures events;’ according to Freud’s understanding of how ancient civilization learned to decipher was relevant or what could dangerously be detrimental to one receiving a dream (4). In the end, one can still argue that dreams and any other form of prophecy are equal to that of lucky guesses, or hunches. In the western civilization, many disregard the idea of dreams as something non-important to one’s daily life. Undoubtedly with the entire “hustle and bustle “of life, one does not have time to consider such trivial things as dreams. The mind has enough to worry about without including dreams and prophecy to the list of complications already associated with life. One is born, one lives for a certain amount of time, and finally one dies For the most part life happens because of every individual’s contributed decision great or small. With that point in mind, it is not necessary to take heed to instruction of a God that no one can see or for that matter fact hear except for a select few. For the rest of the world that decides to occupy their energy in a real and tangible world, dreams and prophecy are non-sense and best to be deemed as coincidences rather than something “divinely given”. There have been many dreams and prophecies that have not have came true at all. Whenever it is not fulfilled, the person claiming to have such a gift uses an excuse to cover their mistakes. Perfect examples are Jeanne Dixon and Nostradamus. One seemed to say things at moment’s notice, resulting “hitting and missing”; meanwhile the other was too poetic for their own good.

Arnold

Using prophecy obviously explains that something is extremely significant; otherwise there would not be any need for it. In order for it to be significant it is imperative that something occurs after the initial course of action; i.e. the prophet Isaiah being naked or Ngundeng eating dung. In Isaiah 20, the God of Isaiah explains the reason why he (Isaiah) is walking around naked. This physical action predicts that the ancient king of Assyria will take the Egyptians, Ethiopians, and all their possessions, bringing them into utter embarrassment for trusting in their own kingdom and power; only proving that whatever God (Jehovah) says goes and that He does exist. According to “Art of Ancient Egypt A Resource for Educators” between the 7th and 4th century during the 25th dynasty of Ethiopia’s rule over Egypt, Assyria actually invades Egypt (13). This is just one example of dreams and prophecy being far more than mere lucky guesses and hunches. The falling of the Berlin Wall is another perfect example that prophecy still exist, and that it is not a form of guessing; but that it is rather a truth(s) about something(s) in secret being revealed in the physical realm which was initially introduced within the mind of an individual. Irvin Baxter Jr., Pastor and founder of Endtime Ministries, predicted in 1968 that the Berlin Wall would fall. He also proclaimed that this would be the initial birth of an “international movement” called the New World Order. (www.endtime.com/about-endtime-ministries.html) In 1986 his first published book entitled A Message for the President, Baxter documents this prophecy. However, the Berlin Wall prophecy did not occur until three years later; in 1989 the wall fell, Germany became whole again, and the idea of having a New World Order has lingered since that time. Because of Baxter’s comprehension of prophecies in the Bible, he has also insinuated that the United States of America and three other countries where mentioned within the pages of the Bible. (The United States in the Bible) Before explaining the reason why Baxter supports the idea that four modern countries are mentioned in the Bible, Daniel a prophet of an enslaved Israel must be introduced. In the

Arnold

book of Daniel, Daniel not only receives prophetic dreams but also is capable of deciphering them; an example of this is located in Daniel 2. In this particular story the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar, has a dream consisting of a giant statue depicting his image. Each portion of this statue have different earthly elements: iron; clay; brass; silver; gold; and the last portions are a mixture of iron and clay. Suddenly, a giant rock appears and destroys the image of Nebuchadnezzar. Something to pay attention to is the fact that the dream is actually given to Nebuchadnezzar, and how it supports the scriptures in Joel 2: 28, 29 noted earlier. Daniel explains the significance of each earthly element. The gold portion makes the head of Nebuchadnezzar and also represents his kingdom of Babylon. The next is that of silver, making up the arms and chest. It represents the kingdom following Babylon: the kingdom of Persia. Third is Greece, which represents the brass stomach and thighs of Nebuchadnezzar. The fourth element iron represents Rome, this the leg portion of the statue. Final portion of the statue, the feet and toes are actually a mixture of clay and iron. These fours nations are mentioned in the introduction of the book Daniel in The King James Bible Expanded Edition (820) In Baxter’s prophecy magazine, EndtimeMagazine (July & August 2006, p. 22) an article is written by Ken Raggio entitled “Iron and Clay Feet and the Four-Headed Leopard” suggests that the very bottom of the statue (the feet and toes of a mixture of clay and iron) signifies that the next major kingdom to arise will be two separate forms of power acting as one.

Arnold

Raggio claims that these powers will be that of the Roman Empire and the Roman Catholic Church; or the EU (European Union) and the Vatican.

According to Daniel 7, one animal is a lion with eagle wings; the wing themselves are removed, stand on its own like that of a man, and receives the heart of a natural man. Another animal is bear lying on its side with three ribs in its mouth. The third is a leopard with four wings of bird (in general); this particular one also has four heads. The final one is an earthly formed creature having iron teeth and ten horns. An extra horn comes from amongst the ten uprooting the first three; and from this last horn appears the eyes of man. When trying to under this odd and frightening dream, it is revealed to him that these animals are actually kings or nations of a modern world. In fact Daniel talks to one of the animals, although it is not revealed exactly which one in particular the fact that “future nations” are mentioned thousands of years before hand is astonishing. In Baxter’s visual presentation, “Modern Nations of the Bible” (Chapter two and three) in the series Understanding the Endtime Level 1; he states, “Now there just happens to be a nation right now, whose official animal symbol is the lion. I picked up the Indianapolis Star on January the 4th of 1980. On the editorial page, the headline just jumped out at me. It said, ‘After the British Lion, the Russian Bear (Chapter 2).” This speaks of the two initial beast spoke of in Daniel 7. Later he states, “…he actually saw America coming out our mother country Great Britain; and then, in the vision Daniel said, ‘I beheld till the wings thereof were plucked.’ He saw the breaking of the eagle’s wings away from the lion (Chapter 3)…” Baxter basically says the United States of America becoming its own nation and receiving its Declaration of Independence was already proclaimed before the country existed. In reference of the leopard, Baxter insists that Germany is the nation represented by the leopard which was given to it dominion according to Daniel 7: 6. Quoting from the USA Today April 9, 1984 the article entitled

Arnold

“The German Malady”, Baxter reads, “Since the time of Charlemagne the area that is now Germany has been the pivot of European history. In the past 120 years, the Germans have dominated Europe intellectually, industrially, and militarily.” Baxter says that Germany has been the main power of in the last one thousand year (in recent times). Earlier in the video (Chapter 3 ), he mentions that last major wars ( the French-German War 1870, World War I, and World War II) were all initiated and orchestrated by Germany. Finally the last beast with ten horn, signifies ten kingdoms (Daniel 7: 24, 25). Daniel a normal man, dreamed these things that apparently did not manifest during his time; but in fact prophesied about non-existing nations that are here as of now. As mentioned before, dreams are not strictly black and white, and are a form of prophecy. There are at times when such things as these are difficult to interpret. Aristotle suggests in his writing 350 B.C. “On Prophesying by Dreams”, that any person can interpret a normal dream or a literal dream. However, it is highly likely that a person greatly experienced in interpreting dreams understands the concepts of “resemblances” (4). Although objects, persons, and places are used within dreams, one cannot simply assume that it has any literal connotation. In a sense one can say the image is distorted and needs clarification before jumping to any conclusions. For example, when another person speaks Spanish, the other person listening cannot jump to conclusions and believe that speaker is actually saying something derogatory. That person is entitled to seek out the meaning of what the speaker is actually saying because the language is foreign to the individual. In reference to that, when reading the word asistir (ah sees tear) one might think that it means assisting, aiding, or helping. On the contrary, the word actually means to attend or visit. Kevin A. Beck, the author of This Book Will Change Your World, says, “We’ve seen language develop before our eyes. It all depends on the context, the intent of the speaker (or author), and possibly even what ‘is’ is.” (27) Beck, referencing Don Everts (All Ideas Living in My Head, p. 17), speaks about metaphors

Arnold

considered “critical realism”; saying that, “It bridges the gap between ‘objective’ truth and our ‘subjective’ perceptions.” Meaning that although one may see an actual image and knows that it is something seen before, does not mean that this very same thing reflects what one knows it to reflect. (28) One must seek out its true intentional definition. In conclusion, prophecy can be considered to be a language with its sole existence based on guiding an individual through various terrains of life. Prophecy is presented in many peculiar ways, but the end goal is the same; to enlighten, forewarn, or comfort one. The most noticeable forms of prophecy are dreams; and while dreams will forever be a constant rubics cube, it is not impossible to get each color to be placed into its own set.

Arnold

Works Cited The King James Open Bible Expanded Edition. Nashville, TN.: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1985: p 672; 824, 830, 831, 852; 1135 Grabbe, Lester L. “Ancient Near Eastern Prophecy from an Anthropological Perspective.” Prophecy in Its Ancient Near Eastern Context in Biblical, And Arabian Perspectives. 2000: p 22. Freud, Sigmund The Interpretation of Dreams. . Kessinger Publishing 2004. 4 Watts, Edith W. Art of Ancient Egypt A Resource for Educators. Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1998: p 13 Beck, Kevin A This Book Will Change Your Life. Bimillennial Press, 1967: p. 27, 28 Baxter, Irvin Jr. “About Endtime Ministries. “. 2005. November 30, 2009 <www.endtime.com/about-endtime-ministries> Baxter, Irvin Jr. “United States in the Bible. 2005. November 30, 2009 <www.endtime.com/prophecy-topic/united-states-in-bible> Raggio, Ken. “Iron and Clay Feet and the Four-Headed Leopard.” EndtimeMagazine. July & August 2006. p. 22 “Understanding the Endtime Level 1.” Modern Nations of the Bible. <www.endtime.com/video-library> Plano. Endtime Ministries. 2007 Beare, J. I. “350 BC ON PROPHESYING BY DREAMS by Aristotle.” Great Books and Classics. 1994. p 4. December 1, 2009. <http://classics.mit.edu/Aristotle/dreams.html> Everts, Don. All the Ideas Living in My Head: One Guy’s Musings About Truth. p. 17 Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2007.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful