Meditation for Monday

Then shall the kingdom of Heaven be likened unto ten virgins which took their lamps and went forth to meet the bridegroom. Matthew 25:1

Gospel preachers love this parable! Very few parables so clearly present the truths of the Gospel as does this one. The virgins with oil in their lamps speak of those who have the Holy Spirit as the seal of their salvation; those without oil in their lamps lack the Spirit’s seal. The parable spells out the awful consequences of being unprepared for the coming of the Lord Jesus. For good reason, few Gospel series come and go without this parable being the primary text for one or more of the messages. In the context of prophecy, this parable also teaches us lessons about the coming events in our world. But have you ever heard it used to address the responsibilities of the Lord’s people in our day?

Weddings are different these days from those described in our Bible, including the one in the parable that begins with today’s text. The group of virgins awaiting the bridegroom is unusual to us. But if we see these ladies as Christians with a testimony, we can appreciate that the oil is those Christians allowing the Holy Spirit to be displayed in their lives. Only the oil can provide the lamp with the ability to provide light. And only by providing light can the lamp provide guidance to the Christian and provide a means for others to identify the Christians. Because every Christian has the Holy Spirit as a Resident, every Christian has the capability of providing the light of testimony for Christ. The difference lies in whether the individual Christian allows the Holy Spirit to function as He should, and therefore allows the testimony to be evident.

In the parable, the virgins with the oil were able to enter into the wedding feast; the virgins without oil were shut out. We don’t always realize that our lives are intended to be a wedding feast. While we rejoice at what our God has prepared for us for eternity, we should not ignore or neglect what He has prepared for us now. A Christian whose life is under the control of the Holy Spirit is always in a joyful environment. Such a Christian has a deep appreciation of his salvation, has an awareness of the daily blessings and presence of the Lord, and has a confidence in the security of being a child of God and of living according to God’s best purposes. Every day in which a Christian allows the Spirit to guide is a joyful feast. Every day in which a Christian withholds control from the spirit is a day of failure to appreciate the blessings of Christ.

If our lamp shines today with a testimony for our Lord, we will enter into the feast that the Lord has spread for us today. – Jim MacIntosh

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