Christian Universe ™
Parable Of The Virgins
December 20, 2015
Jesus gave several parables that help us to understand how we believers are to proceed in life. The parable of the virgins helps us to understand how must always be ready to face the Lord. Some say that we should watch for signs of His return in order to get ready. Jesus taught His followers to be ready at all times. Be prepared, be wise, and do what is right -- all of the time! - Bernie Parsons
Parable of the Virgins
by Bernie Parsons
Presented to Globe church of Christ on 12-20-2015
Presented to Load church of Christ on 12-27-2015
In the parable about the person sowing seed, we noted that one category was the seed that fell among thorns. The thorns represent the cares of this world choking out the faith of the believer.
I see this as a real danger to Christians. Jesus foresaw this as well, and addressed it in more than one parable. We must be careful lest we get so wrapped up in the troubles and demands of our daily lives that we leave no room for the Lord, His word, and His work.
Luke 12:35 "Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning;
36 And ye yourselves like unto men that wait for their lord, when he will return from the wedding; that when he cometh and knocketh, they may open unto him immediately.
37 Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them.
38 And if he shall come in the second watch, or come in the third watch, and find them so, blessed are those servants.
39 And this know, that if the goodman of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched, and not have suffered his house to be broken through.
40 Be ye therefore ready also: for the Son of man cometh at an hour when ye think not.
41 Then Peter said unto him, Lord, speakest thou this parable unto us, or even to all?
42 And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season?
43 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.
44 Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath.
45 But and if that servant say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken;
46 The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder, and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers.
47 And that servant, which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes.
48 But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more."
In verses 35 and 36 above, we see the importance of being watchful, alert and aware. We need to know what is going on around us and how it affects us.
Verses 37 and 38 tell us that those who are ready will be rewarded for their watchfulness.
Verses 39 and 40 reiterate the importance of being ready. An alert homeowner can stop a thief.
In verses 42 through 44, Jesus states that a good and wise steward takes care of the householder’s family and interests. Such a responsible person will be rewarded by a promotion.
Verses 45 through 48 warn of a lazy, or, worse, someone who takes pleasure in fleshly lusts and hurting others. I might say at this point that it reminds me of many of the leaders of “mega-churches”, TV evangelists and even many preachers and others who tell people what to do.
Verses 47 and 48 raise a question that many religious teachers avoid: the one who sinned willingly received a greater punishment than the one who did so unwittingly. The steward who blatantly disobeyed was whipped more than the one who disobeyed through ignorance. However, neither was justified in his disobedience.
Now, let us look at the parable of the virgins.
Matthew 25:1 "Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom.
2 And five of them were wise, and five were foolish.
3 They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them:
4 But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.
5 While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept.
6 And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.
7 Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps.
8 And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out.
9 But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves.
10 And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut.
11 Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us.
12 But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not.
13 Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh."
Of the ten virgins, five were wise and five were foolish. What determined which was which? Verse 3 indicates that the foolish were so called because they took no extra oil for their lamps, while verse 4 says that the wise took vessels of oil in addition to their lamps.
They all slept until the bridegroom arrived at midnight. Their job was to greet the bridegroom with lighted lamps. Having been aroused from sleep, all ten trim the wicks on the lamps to make them burn more brightly. However, the foolish virgins found that their lamps had burned up all of the fuel in them, and they had brought no reserves. The wise, on the other hand, were able to replenish their lamps from their reserve fuel sources.
In verse 8, we read that the foolish virgins asked the wise ones to give them fuel for their empty lamps. The wise, quite wisely, replied that they could not do that, lest their own lights go out. They sent the foolish away to buy more, but when they returned, the door was locked.
Verses 11 and 12 reveal that the bridegroom disavowed any knowledge of the five foolish women on the other side of the door. He refused to open it, instead, sending them away.
Verse 13 deals with the same situation that we saw in our reading from Luke 12. This also correlates to the parable of the talents and their stewards. What is the lesson? To be prepared to do the work of the Lord, to be alert, aware and wise. Knowing that a day of reckoning is coming, and we will all give account, we must take what the Lord has given us and make good use of it.
We are expected to shine the lights for the Lord, and we must never let our lights go out due to lack of preparation. We cannot be lulled into a sense that we will not give account and thus can do whatever we please.
The unprepared will be rejected as surely as those who knowingly go about to do evil. After all, should heaven be filled with those who make foolish decisions?