The parable of the Ten Virgins can be difficult to understand. Part of the challenge is that our wedding customs have changed dramatically. There no concept of betrothal where the couple is married in a private ceremony with the parents. The husband doesn’t leave for an indefinite period of time to set up – maybe even build – a home. There isn’t a surprise return of the groom who will come to whisk the bride away in the middle of the night. There is one concept, however, that we understand very well.
While we don’t fill our lamps with oil that will burn through the night, everyone who owns a cell phone (which is everyone these days), knows what it’s like to run out of battery. I know plenty of people who need to have their phone charging almost at all times because the life of their phone’s battery is just minutes not hours. The so what of it all is the point of the parable.
In Matthew 25 Jesus tells three parables to explain some of the details he gave in Matthew 24 about the end of the world. In the parable of The Ten Virgins he encourages us to wait and be ready for his coming. Jesus is the groom returning for his bride the church on the Last Day. That day could happen at any time. All of the signs from Matthew 24 have been fulfilled. Don’t be surprised if Jesus comes back today. The oil in the parable represents faith. It can be difficult to wait for Jesus. There are temptations that dog us, we’re harassed by the devil, and you won’t easily find encouragement for your soul on Netflix tonight. The danger is that if our souls are not ready on the Last Day, it’s too late. We will be shut out from the wedding feast of heaven.
Want to hear more? Watch this week’s Bible class from our series, Parabolic: The Ten Virgins.
Please click HERE for the Bible class slides.
Please click HERE for the other lessons from our series Parabolic – A Study of Divine Stories.