Summary: Are you prepared for Jesus to return?
Series: Stories from the Kingdom
Text: Matthew 25:1-13
Title: “Are You Prepared?”
The Coming of the Bridegroom
• There are two future returns of Jesus Christ that are talked about in the New Testament.
1. The Rapture literally means “to be carried away.”
o When Jesus returns to take all living believers to Heaven.
1 Thessalonians 4:17 -- 17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.
o This return of Jesus is suddenly and without warning.
Matthew 24:42 -- 42 Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming.
Revelation 3:3 -- I will come upon you as a thief, and you will not know what hour I will come upon you.
2. Second Coming of Christ
o This follows the rapture and the 7 years of tribulation when Jesus comes as the King of Kings to set up His millennial kingdom.
o Unlike the rapture all will see and know when this is going to take place.
Matthew 24:30 -- 30 Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
Revelation 1:7 -- 7 Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen.
• This parable deals with Jesus’ return at the rapture, which is the next event in God’s eschatological time line.
I. The Preparation (1-5)
“The Prepared and the unprepared.”
• Similarities between the two groups.
o Ten virgins
o All had lamps
o All had intentions of meeting the bridegroom (Christ).
• We live in a culture where we all claim to believe the same thing, have the same intentions, and plan on going to the same place.
o So what separates us in God’s eyes is our preparation to meet Him.
• The foolish or unprepared virgins took their lamps, but no extra oil.
o So they had their lamps there with them with enough oil for a while; however they could not feed the flame once it ran out.
• While the wise or prepared virgins not only took their lamps filled with oil, but also took an extra vessel to carry more oil.
• Now I am not going to go all deep into what the lamps and oil could stand for but just to say this: We can have all the good intentions in the world, but at the end of the day are we prepared?
o That is the heart of what Jesus is teaching here, being ready to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.
o It has been said that Heaven is a prepared place for a prepared people.
John 14:3-6 -- 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. 4 And where I go you know, and the way you know.” 5 Thomas said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?” 6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
• But the bridegroom tarried and as they waited they began to fall into that natural routine of life, things just went back to normal.
o We too can allow ourselves to get so far removed from the fact of Jesus’ return that we can go on as business as usual.
James 4:13-14 -- 13 Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit”; 14 whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.
Luke 12:16-20 -- 16 Then He spoke a parable to them, saying: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded plentifully. 17 And he thought within himself, saying, ‘What shall I do, since I have no room to store my crops?’ 18 So he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build greater, and there I will store all my crops and my goods. 19 And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry.” ’ 20 But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?’