All slumbered and slept. As they waited until near midnight, they all fell asleep. This is not to imply that all Christians will be asleep, or cold and careless, when the Lord Jesus comes. All slept, except that some had the Spirit of God (pictured by the oil) and some did not – those who are not genuine Christians. True, many will be asleep, but many will be looking for His coming. We believe that Jesus is simply teaching preparedness and readiness for His coming.
Verse 7, “Trimmed their lamps.” Burning until midnight, the oil was gone, and they trimmed the lamps by removing the burnt parts of the torch, so that they would burn a little longer, picturing one’s own efforts in salvation. They did right to dip them in oil, or to pour oil upon them; however, it was gone. This is a picture of most people when death threatens. It is only then that they begin to prepare. They often become troubled, anxious, and ask for help; often then it is too late.
Verse 10, “Went in with him to the marriage.” This represents those who are ready, or prepared to enter into the kingdom of God when the Son of man cometh; those who have repented of their sins, believe on the Lord Jesus, are living holy lives, and waiting for His coming.
Verse 11, “saying, Lord, Lord, open to us.” This is not teaching or implying that any will come into the kingdom of heaven after the door is shut. This is to illustrate the truth that once the door is shut, it will be too late to enter. As with Noah and the Ark, once the door was shut, it was shut.
Matthew 7:21-23, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”
Hebrews 12:17, “For ye know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears.”
Verse 12, “I know you not.” You were not among those who attended the marriage feast, and you are unknown to me. This applies to professing Christians who are without real salvation. He is saying I know you not as a Christian, and the word “know” is often used in the sense of intimacy and approving, loving, acknowledging as real friends and followers of Christ.
Finally, in verse 13 Watch therefore. This is the purpose of the whole parable, and is the great truth He wants to impress upon all. Like the virgins, many are professedly going to meet the Bridegroom – the Lord Jesus Christ, and His coming, like the coming of the bridegroom, will be sudden and unexpected.
Many professing Christians will have been entangled in the business of the world; never thinking about eternity; not expecting judgment, and not prepared. They will only profess to know Him, but in works they will deny Him, and death will come. Many will be like the foolish virgins, when they see Him coming at death and the judgment, but it will be too late. Those of us who are ready will enter Heaven, but the doors will be closed forever against all others.
The coming of the Saviour is certain and fixed, but the time is unknown. As the virgins should have watched and been prepared, so should we. Christians should always be prepared; and those who are not Christians should waste no time getting ready.
Verse 13, “Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.”
Are you prepared?