Thursday, 13 April 2023
“…The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut.” -Matthew 25:10
Today’s text is to be understood in the context of Jewish weddings of Jesus’ day. The bride being betrothed to the bridegroom for some time, would have a day fixed for the marriage at the house of the bride. On the evening of the day of the wedding, the groom accompanied with his friends, would take his bride to his home which involved a nighttime procession through the streets. There would be a banquet which usually took place at the groom’s home. The scene in this parable is at night as the bride’s friends, the virgins (bridesmaids) were waiting to welcome the couple and to enter the groom’s house where the banquet is held. All ten virgins knew that the groom’s appearing would be soon.
From the parable we have the following findings: Though all ten virgins knew that the groom would be coming, only the five wise ones were prepared! They had enough oil for their lamps to keep it burning for the meeting of the bridegroom to go to his house. The foolish ones had no oil—they had ample opportunity/time to store it before the arrival of the groom.
The main focus of this parable is to highlight the importance of being ready for the coming of the Lord Jesus who is the bridegroom, for His bride- the Church.
We can gather the following thoughts from this parable:
1. The Lord’s coming is not known to us but it will be unexpected and sudden that only those who are ready can go with Him.
2. There is no opportunity to reverse the foolish act of unpreparedness
3. There is a stark demarcation of those whom “He knows” and those whom He doesn’t know. Though who were shut out, shouted “Lord, Lord, open up for us!” But His reply was “Truly I say to you, I do not know you” – though they were waiting for the bride groom!(Cross Reference: Matthew 7:22-23)
4. The availability of oil shows preparedness- be sure you are saved through trusting on the finished work of Christ on the cross and walking as children of light(Ephesians 5:8), eager to please Him.
5. There are those who like the foolish virgins are “having a form of godliness but denying its power” (2 Timothy 3:5)-“knowing” Christ superficially but not intimately.
Dear friends, which category of the virgins would you consider yourself to be?- Foolish or Wise? If you have heard about Christ and practise a form of religiosity which you think can save you, be wise!—Put way that thinking and accept Christ Jesus who can save you. Think not that you can put off your salvation to another day (2 Corinthians 6:2 says: “Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.”)
In Matthew 24:44, Jesus said: “Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.” Like the wise virgins we are required to wait expectantly. The wait maybe long, but, we need to wait readily with the oil of righteousness and purity, and of the Holy Spirit, so that we might welcome Him. We are cautioned to be careful to provide for ourselves sufficient oil so that we are not found wanting at His return.
Let us Pray: LORD Almighty, I pray that You will sanctify me completely- spirit, soul and body, that I may be preserved blameless at the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. I know You are faithful to do it. Amen