Bible Question:

Is dream interpretation a Christian practice? Or is it something to stay away from?

Bible Answer:

Your question appears to be a general question about dream intrepretation, but the answer to your question will be found in some specific Old Testament examples.


Jospeh was the first person in the Bible who is said to have had a dream with special meaning. His dream came from God and in it God told him that he would reign over his family.

Then his brothers said to him, “Are you actually going to reign over us? Or are you really going to rule over us?” So they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words. (NASB) Genesis 37:8

The next Old Testament passages show us that God would sometimes communicate through dreams.

When Saul inquired of the LORD, the LORD did not answer him, either by dreams or by Urim or by prophets. (NASB) 1 Samuel 28:6

Then Thou dost frighten me with dreams And terrify me by visions . . (NASB) Job 7:14


Dream interpretation is difficult, but not when God wants the dream to be understood. God gave the prophet Daniel an unusual ability to intrepret special dreams. This fact is recorded for us in the book of Daniel. This was not common.

This was because an extraordinary spirit, knowledge and insight, interpretation of dreams, explanation of enigmas, and solving of difficult problems were found in this Daniel, whom the king named Belteshazzar. Let Daniel now be summoned, and he will declare the interpretation. (NASB) Daniel 5:12

If God still communicates to us through dreams, we will need someone to help us understand – someone whom God has gifted by His Holy Spirit to understand. We cannot be sure that God still speaks through dreams today since dreams stopped for a while in the Old Testament.

the boy Samuel was ministering to the LORD before Eli. And word from the LORD was rare in those days, visions were infrequent. (NASB) 1 Samuel 3:1

What is worse, there are those today who pretend to intrepret dreams and claim God has spoken when in fact He has not. Listen to this passage,

If a prophet or a dreamer of dreams arises among you and gives you a sign or a wonder, and the sign or the wonder comes true, concerning which he spoke to you, saying, ‘Let us go after other gods (whom you have not known) and let us serve them,’ you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams; for the LORD your God is testing you to find out if you love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul. (NASB) Deuteronomy 13:1-3

It does not matter how godly someone may appear or how exciting his/her experience, the standard of truth is still God’s Word. We need to be students of the Word of Truth so that we can identify false teaching.


We do not need dreams to know about God, about salvation, about Jesus or how we ought to live. Scripture contains everything we need to know God and how to live.

All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. (NASB) 2 Timothy 3:16-17

. . . seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. (NASB) 2 Peter 1:3