Summary: This parable is a contrast between the wise and foolish virgins. We’ll look at the context and then how we practically apply readiness today.
The Parables of Jesus
The Ten Virgins
August 23, 2009
This week we turn to the parable of the ten virgins. This parable is Matthew and is one of several parables arranged by Matthew after the eschatological discourse. The what? This is the teaching found in Matthew 24 and Luke 12 that describes the coming of the Son of Man and the various issues especially difficulties surrounding it. Matthew includes several more parables than Luke. We will be looking at three parables: ten virgins, the talents/minas, and sheep and goats. So we begin with the parable of the ten virgins found only in Matthew 25:1-13.
One evening a burglar finally decided to make his move. He had been casing a house for weeks and determined that tonight he was going to break into a particular house where he was sure that the owners had left for vacation. Slyly and with extreme stealth he headed to the window. He had already determined that there were no alarms and that the owners usually left the window into the living room slightly open.
He crept up to the window, double checked that no one was watching him, and carefully began pushing up the window. After slowly opening the window about six inches, he heard was startled to hear a voice cry out from inside the house, “I see you and Jesus sees you.” The burglar didn’t even think but turned around and fled. From a distance, he watched and waited for the police but none arrived.
“I was sure that no one was home,” he thought so he watched the house. There seemed to be no activity. The living room light came on at 8:03 by his watch, which he was sure was on a timer. He saw no movement and promptly at 11:13 the light went out.
“It’s got to be timer. There isn’t anyone home. Maybe I heard a radio or TV,” he said to himself. So he silently slithered over to the house and approached the window that he had earlier partially opened. As he firmly pushed up on the window, he heard the voice once again, “I see you and Jesus sees you.” It was too much. With his heart racing, he panicked and ran away. He expected that for sure this time, he would hear the screech of approaching sirens but nothing happened.
“Maybe there is someone house sitting,” he concluded. So he decided to watch the house the next day to be sure. However, all the next day, there was no movement or activity. There couldn’t possibly be anyone at home.
So the next evening, he crept up to the house constantly glancing all about to see if he was being watched. He approached the window and again began pushing it open. When it was open just enough for him to climb through, the voice said, “I see you and Jesus sees you.” This time he fought back the panic and just froze. He waited for the voice to say something else but he heard nothing else. Something wasn’t quite right so he proceeded to climb through the window. As he stood up inside the house, the voice coming from the corner of the room again said, “I see you and Jesus sees you.” He peered into the deepening darkness and saw a cage with a bird in it. He walked up to the cage and saw that it contained a beautiful parrot. He couldn’t believe that this parrot had caused him so much grief. He could take his time and get the best stuff.
The parrot once again said, “I see and Jesus sees you.”
“Yeah, right, you stupid parrot. And what’s Jesus gonna do to me?”
Just then the robber noticed a huge Rottweiler emerge from behind a chair. The robber’s heart skipped a beat as the parrot said, “Sic’im Jesus!”
At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish and five were wise. The foolish ones took their lamps but did not take any oil with them. The wise, however, took oil in jars along with their lamps. The bridegroom was a long time in coming, and they all became drowsy and fell asleep.
"At midnight the cry rang out: ’Here’s the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!’
"Then all the virgins woke up and trimmed their lamps. The foolish ones said to the wise, ’Give us some of your oil; our lamps are going out.’
" ’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.’
"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.