Trance, Vision, and Seeing the Unseen
Trance, Vision, and Seeing the Unseen
Definition of Trance
“The…state in which a man has passed out of the usual order of his life, beyond the usual limits of consciousness and volition, being rapt in causes of this state is to be traced commonly to strong religious impressions. Whatever explanation may be given of it, it is true of many, if not of most, of those who have left the stamp of their own character on the religious history of mankind, that they have been liable to pass at times into this abnormal state.” – Smith’s Bible Dictionary
We only see trances mentioned five times in the Bible, but that is more than enough to set a principle of a way God moves in us and speaks to us. By the mouth of two or three witnesses every word is established (see Deut. 19:15).
Balaam, the false prophet who a king tried to hire to curse Israel, went into a trance. We read about that in Numbers 24:1–4:And when Balaam saw that it pleased the Lord to bless Israel, he went not, as at other times, to seek for enchantments, but he set his face toward the wilderness. And Balaam lifted up his eyes, and he saw Israel abiding in his tents according to their tribes; and the spirit of God came upon him. And he took up his parable, and said, Balaam the son of Beor hath said, and the man whose eyes are open hath said: He hath said, which heard the words of God, which saw the vision of the Almighty, falling into a trance, but having his eyes open (KJV). Notice when he fell into this trance, his eyes were open. He was not asleep, but it seemed he was in a sleeplike state, not moving.
Peter fell into a trance that opened his eyes to preach the Gospel to the Gentiles. Let’s look at the entire account in Acts 10:10–17:Then he became very hungry and wanted to eat; but while they made ready, he fell into a trance and saw heaven opened and an object like a great sheet bound at the four corners, descending to him and let down to the earth. In it were all kinds of four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, creeping things, and birds of the air. And a voice came to him, “Rise, Peter; kill and eat.”But Peter said, “Not so, Lord! For I have never eaten anything common or unclean.”And a voice spoke to him again the second time, “What God has cleansed you must not call common.” This was done three times. And the object was taken up into heaven again.Now while Peter wondered within himself what this vision which he had seen meant, behold, the men who had been sent from Cornelius had made inquiry for Simon’s house, and stood before the gate.Notice, Peter saw a vision in the trance. Many people who fall into trances report having seen visions. Some others can’t even describe what they have seen or didn’t see anything.
Paul fell into a trance in Acts 22:17–21 in which the Lord gave him a warning and a commission to preach the Gospel to the Gentiles.
I was in a trance and saw Him saying to me, “Make haste and get out of Jerusalem quickly, for they will not receive your testimony concerning Me.” So I said, “Lord, they know that in every synagogue I imprisoned and beat those who believe on You. And when the blood of Your martyr Stephen was shed, I also was standing by consenting to his death, and guarding the clothes of those who were killing him.” Then He said to me, “Depart, for I will send you far from here to the Gentiles.”Notice, that Paul got instruction in the trance, just as Peter did. Trances, like any other supernatural encounter, are purposeful.
LIVE IN THE SPIRIT
If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit (Galatians 5:25).
As Christians, we don’t go in and out of the Spirit; we live in the Spirit. There’re two expressions for being in the Spirit: one is to be in a trance or in a vision. In that sense, your physical senses are more or less suspended, and that’s a temporal experience.
The other and more important expression of being in the Spirit is being born into the Spirit. This is when you become aware and alive to the spirit-realm through the Word and the Holy Ghost and live in that consciousness even though you’re in this world and your physical senses are conscious of your natural environment. Howbeit, you’re living with the mindset and consciousness of the heavenly being that you are. You see the same things with other people, but you have a different interpretation and a different understanding.
If we live in the Spirit, we should also walk in the Spirit. In other words, since you’re born into the realm of the Spirit since you live in the Spirit, act accordingly. Act with the consciousness that you’re in the Spirit and let that consciousness dictate your physical condition.
For example, when the children of Israel left Egypt, the Bible tells us that they carried their own atmosphere with them: “And the LORD went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night” (Exodus 13:21). They had the pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night. The biting cold at night and scorching heat by day didn’t affect them because they were in the Holy Ghost atmosphere.
Today, we live in the same Holy Ghost atmosphere, in Christ. The Holy Ghost lives in you, and you carry Him everywhere. Therefore, you have His atmosphere, which makes you different. That’s why you can come into a place, where everybody is sad and depressed, and things change; because you came in with the atmosphere of joy. People are under the spell of darkness and failure, and you come in there with brightness and victory because you’re the light of the world. Hallelujah!
Dominate your environment with the atmosphere of the Spirit. Walk in the Spirit, for that’s the realm from which, and into which, you’re born of God.
“For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
The verse above shows us a vital principle of faith; you’ve got to see the unseen! You should be able to visualise what you desire; see it inside first. This is important because you can’t possess what you can’t see. Any change you desire that hasn’t first taken place in your spirit, or which you haven’t yet seen on the inside, will not manifest outwardly.
Abraham, the great patriarch of faith, had to first see the vision of God’s promise to him of becoming a father of many nations (Genesis 15:5-6).
As Joshua planned to attack Jericho, the Lord said to him, “…See! I have given Jericho into your hand, its king, and the mighty men of valor” (Joshua 6:2). Jacob, when he was being cheated by his uncle, Laban, used his imaginative power to get plain coloured lambs to reproduce streaked, speckled, and gray-spotted (read the inspiring story in Genesis 30:25-43, Genesis 31:1-13).
He tells the spiritual side of what happened in Genesis 31:10: “And it happened, at the time when the flocks conceived, that I lifted my eyes and saw in a dream, and behold, the rams which leaped upon the flocks were streaked, speckled, and gray-spotted.”
These examples show how important it is for you to have the vision of your desire with a positive attitude, for the extent of your vision is the boundary of your blessing! Your imaginative power is your creative ability; you’ve got to “see the unseen”; you’ve got to see the way God sees.
Picture yourself living in the reality of what the Word says about you. Contemplate the level of success and victory you want to attain and see yourself functioning at that level.
Dear Father, I thank you for enlightening the eyes of my mind and spirit to see, understand, and apprehend spiritual realities. The eyes of my understanding have been enlightened to know the hope of your calling, and the riches of the glory of your inheritance in the saints, even as your Word finds a vent through me.
The Holy Spirit is my peculiar atmosphere and advantage in life; you’ve made my life very different and beautiful. I rule and dominate my world with the atmosphere of joy, peace, success and victory, in Jesus’ Name. Amen.
My spirit responds to the Word, and my faith produces the desired results. I walk in divine health, victory, dominion, and in the power of the Spirit today. Hallelujah! I walk in the light of the divine enlightenment I have received from studying the Scriptures. Through consistent study and meditation on your Word, I increase in knowledge; grace and peace are multiplied in my life. I have dominion in every situation, in Jesus’ Name. Amen.