Sunday, June 26, 2011

THE END TIMES - Part 6: The Ten Virgins

The End Times
Part 6 – The Ten Virgins
Pastor Bruce A. Shields
House of Faith Church | |


Matthew 25:1-13     The Parable of the Ten Virgins
 1 “At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. 2 Five of them were foolish and five were wise. 3 The foolish ones took their lamps but did not take any oil with them. 4 The wise ones, however, took oil in jars along with their lamps. 5 The bridegroom was a long time in coming, and they all became drowsy and fell asleep.
   6 “At midnight the cry rang out: ‘Here’s the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!’
   7 “Then all the virgins woke up and trimmed their lamps. 8 The foolish ones said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil; our lamps are going out.’
   9 “‘No,’ they replied, ‘there may not be enough for both us and you. Instead, go to those who sell oil and buy some for yourselves.’
   10 “But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut.
   11 “Later the others also came. ‘Lord, Lord,’ they said, ‘open the door for us!’
   12 “But he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I don’t know you.’
   13 “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour.


Over the past few weeks, we have been looking at the 24th chapter of Matthew, at what Jesus has to say about the end of the world.

Jesus explained to the disciples that there would be signs of the end times.  Jesus began by saying, “Be careful that no man deceives you, because many will come in my name claiming to be the messiah.”

He continues telling them that there will be wars, and rumors of wars, nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.  There will be natural disasters and famine.  This is the beginning of the end.

He continued by saying, “you shall be hated because of me.  You will be imprisoned and put to death, and many will betray one another and hate one another.”

“Many false prophets shall rise and shall deceive many.”

Jesus then tells them of the anti-christ, and how he will stand in the temple and claim to be Jesus.  Jesus then tells them about His coming, and talks a little about the rapture and the destruction of the wicked.

Last week we looked at the parable Jesus told of the faithful and unfaithful servant.  This week we will examine the parable Jesus tells to the disciples to help them understand what the Kingdom of Heaven is like, in the parable of the ten virgins.

a.      Symbolism in Christianity
                                                             i.      Baptism – 1 Peter 3:1 “and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also—not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a clear conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ,”

                                                          ii.      Communion – “My body” &  “My blood”

                                                       iii.      Marriage – Ephesians 5:22-33 “21 Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.

 22 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, 27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. 28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— 30 for we are members of his body. 31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” 32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

b.     These sacraments, these outward expressions are symbolic of spiritual truths

c.      Just as baptism represents our being born-again, and communion represents the acceptance of a marriage contract for the new covenant with Christ, marriage represents that relationship between Jesus and us.

II.               THE WISE AND FOOLISH
a.      Lamps without oil

                                                             i.      Oil represents the Holy Spirit
1.      Anointing in Old Testament - The Hebrew word for the verb to anoint is mashach and is the root of messiah,
which means “anointed one.”  The specific practice of anointing by pouring oil on the head was used as a
symbolic act for officially, designating and setting apart a person for a certain, public, leadership function in the community. It was a one-time event much like an inauguration or ordination. Things could also be sanctified or dedicated to a special purpose for God by anointing (Exo. 29:36). The three kinds of leaders anointed for their ministries in the Old Testament were: priests, Exo. 28:41; kings, 1 Sam. 10:1; and prophets, 1 Ki. 19:16.

2.      We see oil used in the New Testament as well, representing healing and the Holy Spirit.

                                                          ii.      The Lamp represents us having Christ, but without the Holy Spirit which only comes by faith in Christ, the lamp without oil is worthless.

                                                       iii.      They began with oil…but while waiting, ran out, and didn’t bother to get new oil (or renew their relationship with Christ and receive a fresh portion of the Holy Spirit).

                                                         iv.      Romans 8:1,21 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, 2 because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.”

                                                            v.      Romans 8:11 11 And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.”

b.     While they waiting for the bridegroom (Jesus), they all fell asleep
                                                             i.      At midnight, the cry came, “Behold, the bridegroom comes, go meet him.”

                                                          ii.      This is the rapture of the church

c.      “They all arose, and trimmed their lamps”
                                                             i.      Without oil, trimming your lamp is pointless.

                                                          ii.      Without the Holy Spirit, knowing about Jesus is pointless.

                                                       iii.      Trimming a lamp with no oil is like so many who are relying on religious activities with no Holy Spirit.  Religion cannot save you.

d.     “The foolish call out to the wise, “Give us some of your oil”
                                                             i.      You cannot “give” the Holy Spirit to anyone…

                                                          ii.      Only God can impart the Holy Spirit, and this happens through a relationship with Jesus Christ.

a.      First notice, the five foolish virgins HAD oil to begin with.

b.     They then ran out…

c.      As they searched for more oil, the bridegroom came, and “They who were ready went with him…”

d.     “…and the door was SHUT.”
                                                             i.      Hebrews 3:12-15 “ 12 See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. 13 But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. 14 We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original conviction firmly to the very end. 15 As has just been said:
 “Today, if you hear his voice,
   do not harden your hearts
   as you did in the rebellion.”

                                                          ii.      “ it was in the days of Noah…”

e.      “the foolish return and say, “Lord, Lord, open to us!”
                                                             i.      He answered, “I do not know you.”

                                                          ii.      Matthew 7:21-2321 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’”

“Watch therefore, for you know neither the day, nor the hour the Son of Man comes.”
Jesus is telling us in this parable;
Be Wise
While you wait for Christ, keep your oil FULL (renew the Holy Spirit in you by renewing your relationship with Christ DAILY!)
Be ready when He comes
Keep Watch!