CON Contact Us DON Donate
Our History General Assembly Worldwide Outreach Ministries Standards Resources

Question and Answer

Do Christians still receive visions?


How should I respond to a relative who claims that Christians continue to have visions from the Holy Spirit? He thinks that these visions are gifts from God and they enhance his worship.


Your relative clearly loves the Lord and wants to worship him. That said, he is, as you perceive, erring in his assumption that visions from the Holy Spirit continue to this day. I assume you want to try to help him understand God's Word more clearly on the subject, but I would caution you not to be harsh or to give the impression that he is being sinful in his thinking. I come from a charismatic background (about 35 years ago, though I did not attend a church at that time, nor did I know much about the Bible). He does love Jesus, but his head has not yet caught up with his heart.

What your relative wants, at the root, is to know that God does not change, that he will reveal himself to his people faithfully. He assumes that it must be the same way God revealed himself to the church in the past (e.g., Ananias in Acts 9:10ff). What he has not realized is that the Lord at that time had not given the whole of Scripture yet. Therefore there were certain things God needed to reveal in a special way. Furthermore, he does not understand that such things were given only to select individuals who moved his work of redemption in history forward (Ananias was to help Paul make progress into his service of Christ). Your task, therefore, is to show him these things from Scripture. Then, turn his attention to 2 Tim. 3:16 and 17 and help him to understand that he is a complete man of God if he has the Scriptures, and to Heb. 1:1-3 and help him to understand that Christ is God's final new revelation and that Christ speaks to us through Scripture, not visions. You might consider also showing him 1 Cor. 13:11 and encourage him to be a man of God who does not need the helps given a child, such helps as were given to the church in its childhood (visions, for example). He is to worship God in Spirit and in Truth (with all his heart, by the grace of the Spirit and in accordance with his Word of Truth). But then be sure to approach him in the Spirit of 1 Cor. 13 or you will only alienate him.

What if he does not listen or believe you? Then simply pray to God to give him more light and love him in the meantime.

About Q&A

"Questions and Answers" is a weekly feature of the OPC website. The answers come from individual ministers in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church expressing their own convictions and do not necessarily represent an "official" position of the Church, especially in areas where the Standards of the Church (the Scriptures and the Westminster Confession of Faith and Catechisms) are silent.

The questions come from individuals like yourself. If you have questions about biblical and theological matters, you are invited to send them by e-mail by using the "Pose a Question" link on the OPC home page or by clicking here.

At least one new question is posted each week, so there should always be something new here for you to read. (For those people who would like to look at previous questions and answers, they will continue to be available as well.)

The purpose of the OPC website's "Questions and Answers" is to respond to biblical and theological questions. Matters of church discipline, disputes, or debates go beyond the scope of our work. We recommend that you present your concerns in these areas to the appropriate judicatory. In most cases this will be to a local pastor, elder, or session. We do not want the website to replace personal involvement in, or commitment to, the local, visible church.

While we will respond to every serious questioner, we are not bound to give a substantive answer to every question, should we deem the question to be beyond the scope of our purpose or our own ability to answer.

You will receive an answer by e-mail. Please be patient as many of our respondents are busy pastors. The response to your question may take up to two (2) weeks. Some of the questions submitted will be chosen to be posted here, along with the corresponding answers.

Note that the "Questions and Answers" posted on the site have been edited—all personal references are removed, Scripture references or from some source may be added, and sometimes portions are expanded—to make the questions and answers more useful to a larger audience.

© 2020 The Orthodox Presbyterian Church



Chaplains and Military Personnel

Diaconal Ministries


Inter-Church Relations

Ministerial Care

Planned Giving

Short-Term Missions


Church Directory

Daily Devotional

Audio Sermons

Trinity Hymnal

Camps & Conferences

Gospel Tracts

Book Reviews



Presbyterian Guardian