Monday, June 11, 2018

The Remnant - A Prepared People

And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The Lord is my God.
Zechariah 13:9

To be sure, Christ is returning for a prepared people.  This is the time that we should be building up, edifying, loving each other up because we don’t want to see our brothers and sisters ‘fall away’.

Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish.   They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. But the wise answered, saying, not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut. Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not. Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.  Matthew 25:1-13

I invite you to observe this parable from a different perspective in terms of being rapture-ready and helping others to also be rapture-ready.  Some of us are silent and never share the gospel because our vessels are empty; nothing for us; let alone anyone else.  Then still, there are others of us who maintain just enough spirituality for ourselves and have nothing left over to share and offer others in need. But then, there is that remnant that are full and overflowing, alert to the times and conditions; who have enough oil that they can share.  Consider this scenario:  

Persons: Five wise women, five foolish women, and an unknown person or group warning of the approaching bridegroom.

Problem: Ten women were waiting for the arrival of a bridal party. Five women were wise and brought vessels with extra oil for their lamps. Five women were foolish and brought no extra oil.

All of the women fell asleep while they were waiting. Suddenly, a cry was given that the bridegroom was coming and all the women awoke to turn up their lamps. The foolish women discovered their oil was all used and their lamps were out. They tried to borrow oil from the wise women who had oil, but were refused.

While the foolish women were gone trying to buy oil, the bridegroom came and the wise women entered to the marriage feast with him. When the foolish women returned with their oil, the door was shut and they could not get in. It was too late. They had taken too long to prepare themselves.

Principle: This parable was presented by Jesus during a discussion with His disciples concerning the end of the world; the return of Jesus to claim the body of Christ.  

Jesus told His disciples that in the last days the spiritual situation would be similar to the parable of the virgins. Some people will be prepared to meet the Lord spiritually but will be "sleeping" and not alert to His returning. This is the group described as the "wise virgins."

Although they are saved, they are doing nothing to warn people around them of the soon coming of the bridegroom. Nevertheless, they experience a spiritual awakening right before His return and are prepared to meet Him.  They have just enough oil for themselves.

The foolish virgins illustrate another group of people who are also unaware of Christ's coming. They are unprepared. They wait too late to fill their spiritual vessels and they do not go with Christ on His return.

They try to get in on the basis of the preparations of the wise virgins, but this is not possible. You cannot gain access to the Kingdom of God on the basis of someone else's experience. You must make your own preparations to meet Him.

There is a third person in this parable. Although the virgins described as wise and foolish all slept, someone was awake to give the cry that the bridegroom was coming. There will be a group of God's people who will be alert to His soon return, awake spiritually and watching for Him to come. They will be used to alert the people of God who are sleeping and not aware of the short time before the return of Jesus.

The question today is to which category do you belong?

  • Are you spiritually prepared to meet the Lord but not really alert to the fact that He is coming soon? Are you sleeping spiritually instead of sending out the cry to others to prepare for His return?
  • Are you like the foolish virgins? Perhaps you have not yet prepared yourself spiritually to meet Jesus. You have no oil in your vessel. You are asleep and empty spiritually. Hear the cry of His soon return and prepare yourself now, before it is too late.
  • Are you one of the unnamed third group, those who were alert to the soon return of the bridegroom and were warning and preparing others to meet Him?

To which of these three groups do you belong?

The second or final death is hell.  Make sure you are rapture ready and not caught in the second death.    Be rapture ready.  

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.  1 Corinthians 15:58  

(Biblical Studies)



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