Ten Virgins

 

Matthew 25:1-13
“At that time, the kingdom of heaven will be compared to ten bridesmaids who took their oil lamps and went out to meet the groom. Now five of them were foolish, and five were wise.

For when the foolish ones took their lamps, they didn’t take any oil with them.

But the wise ones took flasks of oil with their lamps.

Since the groom was late, all of them became sleepy and lay down. “But at midnight there came a shout: ‘The groom is here! Come out to meet him!’ Then all the bridesmaids woke up and got their lamps ready.

But the foolish ones said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out!’ But the wise ones replied, ‘No! There will never be enough for us and for you. Better go to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.’ “While they were away buying it, the groom arrived. Those who were ready went with him into the wedding banquet, and the door was closed.

Later the other bridesmaids arrived and said, ‘Lord, lord, open up for us!’ But he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I don’t know you!’

So keep on watching, because you don’t know the day or the hour.”

Earthy Word = Spiritual Word
groom = Christ
ten virgins = all true believers in Christ
lamp = God’s Word
oil = Holy Spirit
Possible Points of Jesus
  1. THE PARABLE ANALYZED
    1. KEY ELEMENTS IN THE PARABLE…
      1. Ten virgins go out with lamps to await the arrival of the bridegroom – Mt 25:1-4
        1. Five foolish virgins take no oil
        2. Five wise virgins take extra oil
      2. The bridegroom is delayed in his coming – Mt 25:5
      3. The bridegroom’s arrival is announced, and the virgins trim their lamps – Mt 25:6-7
      4. The foolish virgins find that their oil is running out – Mt 25:7-9
        1. They plead with the wise virgins to share their oil
        2. But the wise virgins refuse, saying there is not enough
      5. As the foolish virgins go to get some oil, the bridegroom comes and those prepared go in with him to the wedding, and the door is shut – Mt 25:10
      6. The foolish virgins then arrive, but they are not allowed in – Mt 25:11-12
      7. Jesus then makes the application – Mt 25:13
    2. THE MEANING OF THE PARABLE…
      1. The main message is quite clear, as evident from:
        1. Jesus’ comments leading up to this parable – cf. Mt 24:42-46
        2. Jesus’ comment at the end of the parable itself – Mt 25:13
          1. There is the need for constant watchfulness
          2. For no one knows the moment when the Lord is coming!
      2. As worded in Hendriksen’s commentary, “…the need of being prepared at all times for the coming of the Bridegroom, Jesus Christ.”
      3. This message is repeated later on in the New Testament…
        1. By Paul, writing to the Thessalonians – 1Th 5:1-6
        2. By Peter, to the Christians in Asia Minor – 2Pe 3:10-12
        3. By Jesus, to the church at Sardis – Re 3:2-3
    3. THE PARABLE APPLIED
      1. CHRISTIANS ARE LIKE THE VIRGINS AWAITING THE BRIDEGROOM…
        1. Some are wise
          1. They diligently prepare themselves for the Master’s coming, heeding the call to grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord – 2Pe 3:18; 1:5-8
          2. Knowing what is to come, they “look” for it and live accordingly – 2Pe 3:11-14
          3. For them, the coming of the Lord will be a blessing! – 2 Pe 1:10-11
        2. Some are foolish
          1. They know the Lord is coming, but they are not prepared
          2. They may even be like that evil servant who says “My master is delaying his coming”, and act accordingly – cf. Mt 24:48-49
          3. Yet Jesus has warned what will happen to such evil servants – Mt 24:50-51
      2. ONE SHOULD NOT TRUST IN PREVIOUS ACCOMPLISHMENTS…
        1. Note that the foolish virgins did have “some” oil – Mt 25:8
        2. So they had made some preparation, but foolishly trusted in what they had done in the past
        3. Neither should we “rest on our laurels”, but have the attitude of Paul – Php 3:12-15
          — Are you foolishly depending upon what you have done in the past?
      3. PREPAREDNESS IS NOT TRANSFERABLE…
        1. The wise virgins could not share their oil with the foolish virgins – Mt 25:9
        2. Nor can we impart what salvation we have received to someone else (they must receive it from the Lord Himself) – cf. Ps 49:7; Pr 9:12
        3. Do not think that we can be “saved by association”
          1. It did not work for the Jews – cf. Jer 7:4-7
          2. Neither will it work for us; each of us must have our own name in the Book of Life – cf. Re 20:12-15
      4. THOSE UNPREPARED DO NOT RECEIVE A SECOND CHANCE…
        1. Despite their pleas, the foolish virgins were not permitted to the wedding – Mt 25:10-12
        2. When the Lord comes again, the time for salvation is gone!
      5. MAINTAINING A STATE OF PREPAREDNESS…
        1. Be careful not to let this world to pre-occupy you – Lk 21:34-35
          1. Through its worldly lusts
          2. Through its worldly concerns
        2. Be steadfast in prayer – Lk 21:36
          1. For in prayer we naturally maintain an attitude of watchfulness (which is a mark of preparation) – cf. Ep 6:18
          2. For in prayer we can assure that we will be counted worthy as we confess our sins – cf. 1Jn 1:9
        3. Be diligent to grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ – 2Pe 3:18
          1. As defined in 2Pe 1:5-8
          2. The blessings of which are described in 2Pe 1:10-11
  2. CONCLUSION
    1. This parable teaches that a great day is coming, a day in which those in the kingdom today will find themselves in two different groups…
      1. Those who prepared themselves and faithfully watched for His coming
      2. Those who were not prepared, to whom they will hear the Lord say:
        “Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.”
    2. Dear brother or sister in Christ, if the Lord were to come today…
      1. Would He find you watching?
      2. Would He find you prepared?
        — Would He even know you? – cf. Mt 7:21-23

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