““Then the kingdom of heaven will be comparable to ten virgins, who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and five were prudent. For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them, but the prudent took oil in flasks along with their lamps. Now while the bridegroom was delaying, they all got drowsy and began to sleep. But at midnight there was a shout, ‘Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him. ’ Then all those virgins rose and trimmed their lamps. The foolish said to the prudent, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ But the prudent answered, ‘No, there will not be enough for us and you too; go instead to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.’ And while they were going away to make the purchase, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding feast; and the door was shut.”
Matthew 25:1-10 NASB
Are you wise or are you foolish?
Today’s passage should be one of the most frightening passages you may ever read. In it we see that some get in and some do not. When I refer to “in” I mean Heaven. “ Not “ is somewhere else entirely. When I read this passage, I don’t think of the world. I think of the church. It has been said that upwards of 70 percent of people sitting in the pews of any given Sunday morning are not born again. They are religious, but they do not know the Lord.
These might be people who compartmentalize their faith, they dust it off on Sunday because they feel they should, but make no reference to it during the week. I grew up in churches full of people like that, who praise the Lord on Sunday and raise the glass the rest of the week.
They might also be people with an agenda. Perhaps they have a sin area that they refuse to let go of, or are unwilling to surrender to God. There is no repentance, just rationalization for continuing in sin. They might even seek to twist the Bible seeking permission to keep sinning, thinking God is somehow okay with it.
Some of us are filled with pride as we sit in the pew. “I am a good person.”
“But we are all like an unclean thing, And all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags; We all fade as a leaf, And our iniquities, like the wind, Have taken us away.”
Isaiah 64:6 NKJV
I’m meddling now…
When I think of the oil I think of the Holy Spirit. The wise virgins are have plenty of it. They are able to endure the wait on the Bridegroom. The foolish virgins think they have it. They have been hanging with the wise ones and know enough of the lingo to fit in. Sadly, they missed the important part: the “must be born again” part.
What does that mean. I awaken consumed by God. When I walked the aisle at Grace Church, Easter Sunday 1998, my world was surrendered to Jesus. He began to work in me day by day, reclaiming parts of me that had been surrendered to sin. That war rages even today, as the flesh so seeks to regain territory lost to Jesus. The victory is already completely won as my dead spirit has been replaced by God’s Holy Spirit. My lamp is full, filled by the Lord.
My job is to make the lamp fuller, until it overflows into the lives of others via my spiritual gifts. I am an encourager. That is my chief gift. I exhort other believers on in the faith.
How do I do this.
I fill that lamp daily. I make time to read my Bible. I also make it a point to read it through every year. This allows me to have a constant reminder of God’s faithfulness. In the dark times, which ARE going to come, it helps me to endure. I pray for people. There is so much dire need. People are suffering. Finally, I worship. This is not just the music that I play, but also the bringing glory to God in everything I do. I a mo m not always successful, but He is helping me to surrender more and more. By doing all of these things I have an overflow to minister to others.
If you are born again, make sure your lamp is full and that you have oil to spare. If you think all that I have written is foolish, perhaps you should consider Jesus. Maybe it is time to bow your heart and ask Him to forgive your sins. You lamps will fill, your life will change and be filled with the greatest joy!
THE PRAYER CHAIR IS OPEN! Send me your requests!