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The Parable about
the Ten Bridesmaids

Matthew 25:1-13

Service Notes
MATTHEW 25:1-13
     1.  Then the kingdom of heaven is the same-as ten virgins.  They brought their LAMPS and went to meet the bridegroom.
     2.  Five virgins were foolish and five were wise.
     3.  Because the foolish virgins brought their LAMPS, but no more oil.
     4.  The wise virgins brought jars of oil with their LAMPS.
     5.  But the bridegroom was slow, and the virgins became tired and slept.
     6.  But at [time] midnight they heard a shout, "Look, the bridegroom is here.  Come and meet him."
     7.  Then all the virgins stood-up and turned-on their LAMPS.
     8.  And the foolish virgins said the the wise virgins, "Give us some of your oil, because our LAMPS are almost out."
     9.  But the wise virgins answered, "No, or maybe we will not have enough for us and you.  But go to the salesman and buy oil for yourselves."
    10.  While the foolish virgins went to buy, the bridegroom came.  And the wise virgins were ready and went with him into the wedding feast.  And they shut-the-door.
    11.  After-a-while the other virgins came and said, "Lord, Lord, open for us."
    12.  But he answered, "Honestly, I tell you, I don't-know you."
    13.  Now, watch!  Because you don't-know the day or the hour.

 

The Bridegroom =  

The Bridesmaids =  

    The Wise =  

    The Foolish =  

The Oil =  

The Wedding =  

The House =  

Closing the Door =  

Application = 



What does this story mean?

Jesus tells us in the last verse:
    "Now, watch!  Because you don't-know the day or the hour."

What day?  What hour?
The day and hour when Jesus Christ comes back in glory.
Judgment Day.
...when the wedding banquet in heaven begins,
    as we studied before.

Matthew chapter 25,
    that whole chapter focuses on the final Judgment
in three stories:

This is the first story.

The 2nd story is about three money managers
    (that we studied before).

The 3rd story is Jesus' prophecy about Judgment Day.

Now, parts of this story are hard to explain. 
Many people have different ideas what they means. 

Here is one possible answer...

#1

The Bridegroom = Christ

That's easy.
We saw that in earlier stories.

The women  = All People in the World
The Oil  = Faith or the Holy Spirit

So, that means...

Wise women = People that have faith in Christ
Foolish women = People that don't believe in Christ

And when Christ comes again...
The Coming Bridegroom = Judgment Day

When that Day comes,
    people who go running-around looking for a Bible,
    they are too late.

People who already have a relationship with Christ,
    they will enter heaven.

The House = Heaven

And then He "closes the door"....
Closing the Door = No second chance for unbelievers

His judgment is finished.

Jesus warns us that we must always stay ready,
    ready for death,
    or ready for the end the world.

Because we don't know which will happen first.

Our life can end like... snap!
We don't know when.

And when that time hits, you won't have time to call your pastor.

God says,
"At the right time I heard your prayers.
On the day for salvation I helped you."  (Isaiah 49:8)

The Bible says:
The "right time" is NOW.
The "day for salvation" is NOW. (2 Corinthians 6:2)


That is one possible meaning.
But this story has more possible meanings for us.

#2.

The Bridegroom = Christ
The Girls = Christians

Ok, that's almost the same.

The Oil = the Word of God
The Coming Bridegroom = Situations in life for which we need the wisdom of God's Word

God's Word, the Bible,
    prepares us not only for heaven.

God's Word helps us in life now.

Imagine a  young man who gets drafted for army service.

First he must get training with all the other new soldiers.
They must do hard physical exercise.
They must learn various ways to fight in war.
They must practice with their guns and various WEAPONS.

But not this young man.
He has too much fun -- no time for all that training.... Boring!

Then that army group all go to the Middle East,
    into the middle of real war.

Now other people are shooting guns and rockets at them.
All the American soldiers are shooting back...
    except that one lazy boy.

This isn't fun any more.
He is scare.
Now he wants to learn how to use his weapons.
But he can't find the book.
He asks the other men,
    "Show me how to use this thing!"

They can't.  They are too busy.

The time for learning how to use that equipment
    is NOT in the middle of the war!

He must learn, practice, and get his skills
    BEFORE he goes to war.

If he waits until he needs his equipment,
    that's too late.

And that is true for us.
Every day we need wisdom from God's Word
    for situations that challenge us in life.

We need to learn wisdom BEFORE problems hit,
    because when we must make important decisions,
    those situations won't wait for us research the Bible.

That is the point of Proverbs chapter 1:

Wisdom says:
"When I teach you, I wish you will listen.
I called to you, but you refused to listen;
    You ignored me.
    You didn't follow my advice
So when you are in trouble, I will laugh.
When destruction comes over you like a storm,
    when trouble hits you like a tornado,
    when pain and trouble overwhelm you,
you will call to me, but I will not answer.
   You will look for me, but you will not find me.
You didn't accept my advice,
    and you rejected my correction.
So you will get what you deserve;
    The things you planned against other people,
        that will happen to yourself.
Foolish people become destroyed because they don't-care.
But people who listen to me will live in safety.
and they will have peace, without fear getting hurt."

So which interpretation for this story is right?

Did Jesus tell us this story for future events?
    ...warning us:
        Trust Him NOW!  Don't wait.

Or is this story about today,
    advising us to study the Bible now, don't wait?

Which?
BOTH are right!

God and His Word give us wisdom for life now
And the Word of God helps us know Christ
    that makes us ready for the Day that we meet Him
        when our time ends.


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