Summary: What would you do if you knew today was to be the last day for you on earth?
Matthew 25:1-13 (READ)
This morning I have a life changing thought I want to interject into your life. What would you do today, if you knew tomorrow was to be your last day? We often think of people coming to the end of life, but we really don’t think about it enough. When we think of it we usually think of friends and relatives who are aging, but we don’t really think that tomorrow could be our own last day on earth. Jesus reminds us in this parable that none of us know the day or the hour of the coming of the Lord, or the day of our demise.
Three undertakers who had buried a lot of people, were burying someone one day when the younger, the quite younger of the three said "I wonder which one of you two we will be burying first." The next week, the younger man was the first to be buried.
It is good for us to think in these terms today, What would you do if tomorrow were your last day.
In verse 10 we have a powerful statement, it says the door was shut. There was a finality in that statement, the door was shut. Call it what you like, the coming of the Lord, or the passing of ones life. There is a finality the words sound. There is nothing more that can be done about sin, there is nothing more that can be done about life because the door has been shut.
When you looked at the title in the bulletin, or on the sign out front, you probably thought this was a message for the non-believers, but you are wrong, this is a message for the believers. This message here in the parable is for the church, these were virgins, these were members of the church. Five of them went out, five of them went in, five of them had no oil, and five of them had oil when they needed it. They all had lamps, they were all waiting for the bridegroom, they all arose and trimmed their lamps, then there is an embarkment for it says they were foolish and they were prudent or wise.
I am sure if I were to break up this congregation and talk to each one of you individually, most of you would say I have a lamp, I am waiting for the bridegroom. The question that concerns me however is this, DO YOU HAVE OIL IN THE LAMP TO KEEP YOU UNTIL THE BRIDEGROOM COMES? That is my burden this morning.
I am concerned because I read in the news comments from Christian leaders who are compromising the Scriptures, allowing all kinds of sins into the church. A few years ago in the Seattle area there was a church which made the headlines in the Seattle Times concerning how the pastor encouraged and participated in sexual immorality throughout the congregation. In 2 Timothy 3:13 says "But evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived."
If you think you are in the comfort zone today, I want you to know there is no such thing in the Spiritual realm. We need to be constantly looking to see how much oil is in our lamps. Whether or not the light is sufficient when the Bridegroom comes, so you can go out and not be left out when the door is shut. You see we have an adversary. Peter said he goes around like a roaring lions seeking who he can devour.
That is why my message asks what would you do if tomorrow were your last day? And it could be. The news has been dominated with stories about political corruption, the governors of two states indicted and imprisoned, political scandals and sexual immorality that should turn your cheeks red to hear the stories, almost all happening to quote good church going people. Several years ago in New York City, the Bishop of St. John’s Pentecostal Church reportedly earned $250,000 a year by having his nuns "beg on the street". He was indicted for dismembering four women along with their thievery.
Am I shocking you today? Good. What I seek to point out in my introduction is that none of us are immune. None of us are beyond the potential of falling into the traps of the world’s system. That is why Jesus Christ left us this parable to warn us. It is not only important to have a lamp, it is not only important to get it burning, it is absolutely important to keep it burning until the bridegroom arrives.
Since the hour of the original deception since Eve was deceived in the garden, the heart of man has been infected with deceit. We can see it in the church. On the outside we see everything is alright, but on the inside we hide our true self, we wear our Christian masks because we don’t what people to see us as who we are, we deceive others, and we deceive ourselves. If God were to rip aside the curtain that hides out masks and reveal who we really are, how ashamed would we be to have our deception exposed.