The difference between prophets, dreamers and visionaries

In Acts 2:17, the Apostle Peter ,addressing a crowd ,says:

‘In the last days, God says,
I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
your young men will see visions,
your old men will dream dreams.'

Based on the above passage, we can clearly see that there is a demarcation between: prophecy, visions and dreams.
Since the passage of 'Acts 2:17' demarcates prophecy, vision and dreams, we can conclude that it is possible to have visions and/or dreams without being a prophet.
Therefore, simply because someone has dreams and/or visions, it does not necessarily mean that they are a prophet.

A prophet is gifted with the gift of Prophecy'. (period)

Let us define 'visions, dreams and prophet':

A) Vision: ' Vision is the ability to see things that the physical naked eye cannot see while retaining the conscious state of the physical body.' In a visionary state, the recipient of the vision is able to see things hidden to the physical eye without sleeping.
As a good example, the passage of 'Acts 10:9-17' depicts a vision that Peter had. If you read the passage, you will notice that Peter was not asleep when seeing the vision. The NIV Bible and the NKJV Bible mention that Peter 'felt into a trance'.
Many people in the Body of Christ are gifted with 'visions'. A person with such gift can be called a 'visionary, and he/she can be ONLY called a prophet' when he/she receives a gift of prophecy as well.

B) Heavenly Dreams: 'Heavenly dreams are messages we see and hear that are contained in moving pictures received from God when our bodies are in sleepy state. Notice that I mention the term 'Heavenly Dreams' in order to differentiate them from natural dreams generated by our own brains.
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A person who receives dreams from God, can be called a 'Dreamer'.
Many preachers and disciples of Christ are Dreamers and/or Visionaries. They can only be Prophets once they receive the gift of Prophecy.

C) Prophet: 'A prophet is spokesperson of God. This is why many of the utterances of prophets start with 'thus says the LORD:...'. The ministry of the prophet is a very high and distinguished order due to its nature. By looking at the history of prophets in the Bible, what distinguishes the prophetic ministry from dreams, visions, knowledge, is the fact that prophets were closely involved in: politics, public policies, government affairs, military affairs, the national economy , the church government, and the society at large.
By studying prophets such as Moses, Elijah, Isaiah, John the Baptist and many others, you will notice that their ministries touched the various spheres I mentioned above.

Here are the examples:

*Society at large: the prophet Jonah addressed a message to an entire society, and not to just individuals (ref. Jonah 3)
*National economy: Prophet Joel (Joel 2:18-27)
Prophet Elijah ( 2 Kings 7)
Prophet Elijah ( 1 Kings 17:1-15)
*Politics, public affairs, government affairs:
-The Prophet Samuel (his entire ministry). Please pay attention to the way that he was able to anoint kings...
-Prophet Daniel was the governor of the Babylon province (reference Daniel 2:48)
-The Prophet Moses was a leader and a constitution specialist. The books of Numbers, Deuteronomy, Leviticus contained the constitution of the Ancient Israel at political and religious levels.
Military affairs: Prophet Elisha (2 Kings 13:10-20)
The Prophet Moses ( Exodus 17:8-15), secret
service dealings (Numbers 13)
Having mentioned the activities characterizing the prophetic ministry, we can conclude that God uses prophetic ministry to influence the directives of a nation or region. Therefore, we should be careful not to carry or bestow that title to anyone who has never been called to be a prophet.
If someone is a prophet, it should be expected that he/she carries a certain level influence on the public affairs of a nation or a region through prophecies and also through interactions (direct or indirect) with or against key influencers (e.g: business people, cultural celebrities, trend shapers) and political leaders.


If we manage to clearly differentiate prophets, dreamers and visionaries, we will certainly set aside confusions within the church.