Dream in a bus and popular novel
Ivan Ho 15 Feb 2022, HK
In the first part of the dream, I am seated inside a bus where there were other passengers around me. I have a pair of shoes packed in a shoe bag but I have left its zippers open. When I am about to alight the bus as it approaches the next stop, I find that my shoes have dropped out of the shoe bag. I manage to pick up the shoes and put them back inside the bag as the bus is about to stop, and as a result I miss the station and have to get off in the next stop instead.
In the second part of the dream, I find myself in my friend D’s apartment. I say to him: “Let’s share the gospel together” to which he replies: “I am not ready to do that yet and need to take some classes first”. I then say to him: “We don’t need to wait, we can share the gospel now”. As we are talking, we walk past someone whom I don’t know.
Then D takes me to look at his bookshelf where he has the whole collection of popular Chinese novel ‘The Legend of the Condor Heroes‘ (射雕英雄傳) in English translation. He says he also has the Chinese version which he wants to give to me. I ask him if he’s giving them away for free to which he jokingly replies he would charge me $2.5 each. I say to him: “You bought the English version and they give you the Chinese version for free. Since you can’t understand Chinese anyway, you are giving them away to me”. I haven’t read the novel before and am glad to take the books. However, there are so many volumes in their hard covers that I don’t know how to bring them with me, as all I have is my shoe bag.
Then I see another friend of mine W who I ask if he can give me a lift home with the books. He says: “I don’t have my car with me and I am going with D together to a church camp”. I thought to myself: May be I should leave all the books in the boot of my car.
Thoughts and interpretation
Dream part 1:
We are called to be ready to preach the word in season and out of season. (II Timothy 4:1-2 NKJV)
The shoes I carry with me symbolises the shoes of the gospel of peace. (Ephesians 6:15 NKJV ) If I don’t have them ready on my journey, I would miss the next stop.
I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.
2 Timothy 4:1-2 KJV
When Jesus returns, He will judge the living and the dead. That means everyone, whatever religious or cultural backgrounds, social status, rich and poor, will be judged.
The only ones who will not be condemned of their sins on the day of judgement are those who are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. (Romans 8:1 KJV)
That is why we should preach the word in season and out of season. The word of God is not preached for entertainment or self gratification but for reprove, for rebuke, for exhortation and for doctrine.
Dream part 2
I invite D to share the gospel with me but he comes up with some sort of excuses saying he is not ready. While we are talking, we passed by someone whom we could have shared the gospel with.
The Chinese novel speaks of popular books and materials that we sometimes read or watch. The whole bookshelf is full of many volumes of such materials which would occupy a lot of our time and space. My friend buys and gives them to me and hence it would cost me nothing except time to feed on these things. Sometimes there are lots of such materials given to us for free within the church which only have entertainment rather than any eternal values. These things are not my priority in life and therefore I decide to place them in the boot of the car instead of on my bookshelves.
Moreover, ‘The Legend of the Condor Heroes‘ is a highly popular Chinese novel that is full of fantasies and fictional characters depicted in historical settings in China. By contrast, the Bible is the true historical records of God’s interaction and dealings with man, containing the true historical accounts of Jesus Christ the Son of God during His life on earth.
The popular Chinese novel reminds me of the following scripture in the word of God:
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
2 Timothy 4:3-4 KJV
The time has come when people reject sound doctrine and the uncontaminated word of God. Instead, they surround themselves with people to reinforce each other’s belief/ unbelief systems, and find themselves false teachers who give them words not based on the truth in the Bible but according to their own imaginations.