In the parable of the ten virgins, the foolish virgins who had gone out with the wise to meet the Bridegroom lacked a reserve of the oil of God’s Holy Spirit to last them through the darkest part of the night. As a result, when the clamor or shout came announcing His arrival and calling them to come out and meet Him, these were not ready. Unable to secure from the wise virgins what they were lacking since the graces of the oil they possessed were only sufficient for themselves, the foolish virgins were forced at the very time they needed it most to go to the dealers and try to buy some. But as getting oil is a work of time, and they did not avail themselves to obtain it when they earlier had the opportunity, now instead of entering in with the Bridegroom to the wedding feast they have found themselves shut out, for He came while they were going away to make the purchase, and the door was shut—just like in the days of Noah, and the days of Lot, and as happened to Esau, and to those who came out of Egypt but were prevented from entering the land of promise. What did the foolish virgins say when they finally arrived and found that the door was shut? See Mat 25:11. Although the door they found shut was an ominous sign, what do their words indicate was their clear expectation of being admitted to the wedding feast? What do their words indicate about the familiarity and relationship they supposed they had with the Bridegroom that would gain them entrance? Cf. Mat 7:22, Luk 13:25-26. While the hypocrisy of a false profession often deceives others, who does this remind us that it especially deceives? Cf. 2Pe 1:10.
Although the foolish virgins supposed themselves to know the Lord so they would be allowed to enter, what was His response to their request to open up for them? See Mat 25:12, cf. Mat 7:23, Luk 13:27. What does this teach us about the importance not just of us knowing the Lord, but the much greater need for Him to know us? Cf. Gal 4:9. What does it mean for Him to know us? Notice that to know someone is a covenant term of close intimacy, as when a man knows his wife. The purpose of such intimacy is to produce fruit, but the highest quality fruit can only happen in the presence of a covenant agreement where two have agreed to walk together as one. Absent such oneness, the fruit of their union is of a lesser or inferior quality, which is why bastard, the term for an illegitimate child, is derogatory. Because the eyes of the Lord are too pure to look upon evil (Hab 1:13), only those who do the will of the Father by walking in righteousness can truly walk together with the Lord in such a covenant relationship where they know Him, and He knows them. Cf. Psa 1:6, Mat 7:21, Joh 10:14-15,27, 1Co 8:3, 2Ti 2:19.
What is the great regret that will consume for all eternity those who come to the wedding feast supposing they will be granted admittance, but find the door shut and are then rebuffed by Him whom they thought they knew and would open to them? Is it not that they, unlike others who weren’t nearly as informed, had every opportunity to embrace the truth, and they even pretended to embrace the truth, but in their foolish hearts they did not, being deceived by their love for the world? Will they not regret that there was a time when they ate and drank in the Lord’s presence and He taught in their streets, when they could have asked, “Lord, lord, open up for us”, and it would have gained them entrance? Cf. Mat 7:7-8. Will not their great regret be that there was a time in the past when things could have been different, in fact a time when the Lord Himself stood at their door and knocked incessantly (Rev 3:20), pleading with them with outstretched arms to open up and be received by Him, but they would not answer, and so the time came when they called out to Him, and He would not answer? Cf. Zec 7:12-13. Will not the great regret that will consume them be that they foolishly put off until tomorrow what could only be accomplished on the Today of their salvation, and as a result they missed their opportunity and arrived too late? How did Jesus repeatedly describe this great regret that will consume such pretenders who are rejected and cast out? See Mat 8:11-12, 13:47-50, 22:11-13, 24:45-51, 25:30.
What does Jesus say in Mat 25:13 is the summary of the parable? What does this summary remind us about the purpose of the parable in the greater context of the disciples’ questions about the destruction of the temple, lest they too be swept away by the Lord’s coming? See Mat 24:1-3,42-44. How does this help us understand that this parable, like those before it in Mat 24:42-51, are primarily for the believer, not the unbeliever, as is often supposed?