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Archive for January 18th, 2010

Be Alert

1 “Then the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps 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.” Matthew 25:1-13 (ESV)

One of my favorite Bible study teachers used the following analogy on a girls’ retreat I went on last spring.  (I guess this is mostly for girls – sorry guys.)  It really made me think.

Think about this, girls – you found your true love/Prince Charming/the one you’ve been waiting your whole life for!  You are engaged, and he has gone off somewhere to build you a house and get everything in order for you to get married.  He is going to come back for you any day, so you’ve got to be getting your things ready.  Don’t you think you would be excited and looking for him every day?  Well, I would be! 

That’s how we’re supposed to be with Jesus!  We are engaged to Him (the Holy Spirit is like our engagement ring – Ephesians 1:13-14), He has gone to prepare a place for us (John 14:2-3), and He’s coming back any day (Mark 13:32-37, 1 Thess. 5:2)!  Am I as excited about that as I would be about getting married?  Something to think about.

I’m sure there is a lot more theology involved in the story of the Ten Virgins that Jesus told, but here is what I got out of it today.  Five of the virgins were prepared – they had extra oil for their lamps so that they were ready when the bridegroom was coming.  The other five virgins are called foolish – they used up the oil that they had for their lamps and they were too lazy to get more before they absolutely had to.  To me, this shows a lack of adoration for the bridegroom – they really weren’t excited and waiting for him to come back.  And they ended up missing his return and not being allowed to attend the marriage feast. 

Is this how we act toward Christ?  Are we so lazy doing whatever we want to do that we won’t be ready when he returns?  It’s a challenging question.  I have asked Him to remind me of it more often.

So be alert!  We don’t know when He’s coming back.  It may not be for 20, 50 or 100 years, but it may be this year.  Would you be ready if it was tomorrow?

“You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.” Luke 12:40 (ESV)

“He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming quickly.” Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus!” Revelation 22:20 (NKJV)

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