In Matt. 25:1-13, we see Jesus sharing about His second coming using a parable of 10 virgins that go out to meet the bridegroom at a wedding. To really understand these 13 verses, we first need to look at Matt. 24:36-42, where Christ tells us that no one knows the day or hour, not even the angels of heaven, but only His Father. He goes on and states we’re living in the days of Noah where people are eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, totally self-absorbed and unaware of the times and seasons surrounding them. Matt. 24:44-51, tells us we need to be ready to make a choice, will we be faithful or unfaithful as we wait for His return? It’s with these words that He leads into a parable about the Kingdom of Heaven likened to 10 virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. 5 of them were wise and 5 were foolish. Let’s try to understand this chapter in relationship to the time’s we’re living in as it relates to Christ’s second coming. Truly, we don’t know the day or hour but we should be aware of the times and seasons we’re living in just like the Sons of Issachar, who had the understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do (1 Chron. 12:32).
First, I believe the 10 virgins represent the church in America today. A church that has true believers (those whose hearts are truly desiring all of Jesus) and false believers (those that present an image that look’s like they have hearts that are following Christ) both are filling our pews and pulpits. Paul is correct when he speaks to Timothy in 1 Tim. 4:1, “Now the spirit expressly say’s that in the latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons”. Like Paul, we need to realize that certain dangers will mark the latter times. The danger of apostasy (those that depart). The danger of deception (deceiving spirits) and the danger of false teaching (doctrines of demons) that are found in the unbelief that the Bible is God’s inspired word, the virgin birth of Christ, the atoning death of Christ on the cross and the redemptive work of His resurrection from the dead and yet they still call themselves Christians. The church is filling up with those seeking “experiences’ like the Athenians in Acts 17:21, seeking after some new thing instead of a relationship with the living Christ.
These 10 virgins denote the beauty and purity of those that are maids of honor that have the responsibility to WAIT ON HIM when he appears but in the meantime to faithfully WAIT FOR Him if He should delay. Psa. 27:14, “Wait on the Lord, Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart: Wait, I say, on the Lord”. As true believers we are to be like the 5 wise virgins and hold up the name of Jesus as we wait for His appearing…not only believing in but longing for His return. So what was the difference between the 10 virgins? The difference was the preparation and character they displayed, 5 were wise and 5 were foolish. They all seemed to have the same profession (they talked the talk) but not the same heart of preparation (they didn’t walk the walk). They all had lamps that had oil in them, but 5 brought along extra oil. Both had enough to light up the present, 5 foolish for show and 5 wise for go, (the revelation to bring more just in case!). Phil. 2:14-15, exposes the great problem in our church today. Today many want the presence of Holy Spirit (oil) without preparing and paying the price. Notice, they all slept as they waited for the bridegroom. It’s tough to stay faithful and watchful at the same time when a promise tarries. Those Unmet Expectations can cause weariness in well doing if you have to wait a long time for them (Gal. 6:9, Hab. 2:3). Even though they all slumbered the 5 wise virgins kept their lamps burning but the foolish lamps went out. Our carelessness builds on itself and has unintentional consequences. Remember, He’s coming when we least expect it…the bridegroom came at mid-night.
He came with a cry from heaven where everyone could hear and see Him. All 10 virgins arose and trimmed their lamps, the foolish lamps had gone out (Job 21:17). Job tells us destruction will always come upon those whose lamps go out. They had enough oil for their immediate need but not enough that lasted long-term. There will come a time when those that laughed and snubbed your lamps will beg for some of that extra oil to light theirs. But remember, that oil isn’t yours to give away, it’s always been Gods to give. They will want some of what you have but the door is closing. All they needed to do was ask Him for it. Once they could’ve asked and it would’ve been given. Sought and it would’ve been found. Knocked and it would’ve opened. There is a time coming when the door will be closed and those that once had some oil in their lamp but willfully let it run out as they ran after the world and what they thought it offered. They will find themselves just like Esau who sold his birthright for bread and a bowl of stew (Gen. 25:30-34) and coming to receive his blessing found it had been given to Jacob (Gen. 27), a closed door. So it will be with those that “have a form of Godliness but deny the power their in”. Those that believe in the Bible but not the Lord of the Bible. Those that have lived a compromised and partial commitment to the principles of the Word of God. They will hear on that day, “Truly, I say to you, I do not know you” and the door will be shut on both the unbelievers and those that didn’t take the Kingdom of God seriously.