on 08 November 2023
Matthew 25:1-13 The Parable of the Ten Virgins 25 “Then the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps[a] and went to meet the bridegroom. 2 Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. 3 For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them, 4 but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps. 5 As the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and slept. 6 But at midnight there was a cry, ‘Here is the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’ 7 Then all those virgins rose and trimmed their lamps. 8 And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ 9 But the wise answered, saying, ‘Since there will not be enough for us and for you, go rather to the dealers and buy for yourselves.’ 10 And while they were going to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was shut. 11 Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open to us.’ 12 But he answered, ‘Truly, I say to you, I do not know you.’ 13 Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour.
The Revised Common Lectionary has the Parable of the Ten Virgins (or Wise and Foolish Virgins) as the Gospel Text for this coming Sunday (11/12/23). The story is rather simple. The wedding will start when the Bridegroom arrives to gather his beloved and her attendants. In those days, travel was less predictable as was the time to prepare the food and other things needed for such a celebration. In the parable, five of the young women were prepared, the others were not. The ones who were prepared enjoyed to Feast, the others were shut out!
This is often preached primarily about the 2nd Coming of Christ, but in reality, it is about the Kingdom. Matthew has a Jewish audience in mind and so uses “heaven” as a figure of speech (double entendre); that is, in order not to use the Divine Name (Kingdom of God). This Kingdom is present wherever the King of the Kingdom is present. So while the parable warns us to be ready for Jesus’ return, it is also warning us to be prepared for any time our King comes to us. The primary way in our day is through the reading and proclaiming of the Word of God. (See Season 7 of A Cord of Three Strands)
Every Lord’s Day our King calls us to meet Him and hear His Word. Are we prepared? Are we foolish or wise?
For more on William Blake’s Painting, please READ.
This article was written by: Ron Jung