So always be ready [stay awake; be alert; keep watch], because you don’t know the day or the hour [the Son of Man will come]. [Matthew 25:13 EXB]
Jesus was a storytellers' storyteller - he always used stories to teach.
In this passage he taught that we should live as people who are ready.
Ready to die. Ready to live. Ready to love. Ready for God.
He speaks of ten who are ready and ten who are unprepared.
“Then the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them, but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps. As the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and slept. But at midnight there was a cry, ‘Here is the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’Don't you love these kinds of stories and the lessons they teach?
Then all those virgins rose and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ But the wise answered, saying, ‘Since there will not be enough for us and for you, go rather to the dealers and buy for yourselves.’ And while they were going to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was shut. Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open to us.’ But he answered, ‘Truly, I say to you, I do not know you.’
They seem to speak of ideas that are true today and in the future.
This story reminds me that life is all about preparation.
The Lord teaches us in this story that living in wisdom is how we prepare ourselves.
I think that being wise is not about our intellect or even our biblical smarts.
Being wise is a heart condition that reveals itself in humility before God and man.
Such are the people who are prepared, and preparing, for his coming.
I am arrogant Lord. Teach me humility that I might be ready to serve you.
... this devotion is part of the Red Letters series. Click here to read more.