The Word This Week

Matt 25:1…

Reminding ourselves there were no chapter breaks, we recognize the Olivette Discourse continues to the end of chapter 25.

Having instructed those who are alive when the nation of Israel is restored to be watching and waiting for the Rapture of His Church – Jesus illustrates exactly what it means to be watching and waiting by way of a series of parables.

Watching and waiting is not an inactive proposition.

Once again, the Rapture of the Church is distinguished from His Second Coming, just as it had been in chapter 24.

As Jesus continues to teach them, those listening to Jesus on that day would have immediately understood His allusion to a Galilean wedding ceremony, both in chapter 24:36, and again as we move on His discussion…

It could not be more obvious Jesus is referring to a wedding, as He uses the illustration of bridesmaids in this parable – known of as the ‘Parable of the Wise and Foolish Virgins.’

We consider what it means to be part of His Church during the time period known of as ‘The Church Age,’ (which spans from the Day of Pentecost until the Rapture of the Church - which is yet future in our lives.)

According to Jesus, no one knows the day or the hour of the Rapture, but the Father only, which fits exactly how wedding ceremonies took place in their day.

Following the betrothal of the groom and the bride, the groom would go away for an indeterminate period of time during which the groom would prepare a house for the bride and groom to reside in following the wedding. It was the groom’s job to prepare a place for them to live, it was the bride’s job to wait patiently for the groom to return. Only the father would determine when the son had completed the chamber for his bride, and send his son to bring her home.

While the groom was away, the bride would assemble her bridesmaids and begin preparations for the wedding ceremony, and for the garments they would all wear during the ceremony, and the seven-day wedding feast which would follow the wedding ceremony.

All were familiar with this format. Jesus is telling them and us the most important preparation for the return of The Groom at his Father’s instruction is to be filled with the Holy Spirit - and only those who are already filled with the Holy Spirit, (born again,) WHEN Jesus comes on the clouds to meet His Bride in the air will be Raptured. Once the Groom appears, there will no longer be time for remedial action in the lives of those who call themselves part of His Church - but are not born again. This is a very strong exhortation by Jesus to BE born again, and not merely look the part.

Pastor Bill