“”But while they were gone to buy oil, the bridegroom came. Then those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was locked.”
As we explore this passage found here in Matthew 25:1-13, we are reminded by Jesus that we should always be ready for His return and ready to meet our Bridegroom. We cannot know the exact date of His return but what we do know, is that we are to be ready!
Jesus starts this parable with the common imagery of a Jewish wedding feast. Traditionally in the Jewish wedding feast, the bride would wait for the groom in her house. The groom would go to the bride’s house, where he would ask permission to marry his fiancé and pay a dowry for her. Then the wedding party would start a procession back to the groom’s house where a large feast would take place which depending on the wealth of the groom, could take up to a week to end. The procession usually took place at midnight with guests holding an oil-based lamp attached to a pole to guide them at night.
As Jesus explains to his listeners about the ten bridesmaids waiting for the groom, he highlights a key difference in the ten. The five wise bridesmaids were prepared for the grooms coming (by bringing extra oil) and the five unwise bridesmaids were unprepared (by not having extra oil). Because the groom was delayed, all ten bridesmaids fell asleep. However, suddenly at midnight they were awoken by a loud shout announcing the arrival of the groom. The five wise bridesmaids, having extra oil, lit their torches and joined the procession to the grooms house. However, sadly because of the lack of extra oil, the five foolish bridesmaids missed the procession because they were out buying more oil. They may have looked the part outwardly but because of their unwise preparations they missed the procession to the grooms house.
“Then those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast….!”
Are you preparing well for your Master’s return?