The Ten Virgins
NCW 75, April-June 2002
Q. I have been reading some of your articles and they are very good. I just wanted to know if you could explain to me the Scripture that talks about the 5 wise and 5 foolish virgins and tell me what this is talking about. Is this something that has happened long ago or something that is yet to take place in the future?
A. Like all Messianic and prophetic parables, it is to be understood on many levels. To begin with, it would appear to be an allusion to the Marriage Feast of the Lamb as fleshed-out in the Book of Revelation. It is, in my understanding, both fulfilled, being fulfilled, and to be fulfilled, since it is about the call of all believers to make their calling and election sure. In the wider sense, it will be fulfilled at the consummation of history and the resurrection, but is even now happening as the wheat is being sifted from the tares. For a midrashic understanding, see Olive Branch Section 207, where you may find some useful keys of understanding. In addition, ten is symbolically a number connected to the Decalogue (Ten Commandments), obedience to which is mandatory. There are some who believe that this parable is representative of the earthly Body of Christ on the earth when Christ comes back, showing us that its disobedience is such that it is obeying only half of the primary commandments. If this is so, then it is a further warning to all believers not to trifle or explain away the commandments they do not "like". Certainly the end-time Body is rife with sexual immorality, disrespect of parents, ignorance of the true Sabbath, idolatry of various forms, covetousness (materialism), etc.. Finally, the two sets of five remind is of the right and left hands (five fingers on each) and of the separation of the sheep (on the right) from the goats (on the left). In this respect, it is a simple parable about Yahweh's judgement. By examining all these symbolic lines I think it becomes clear that what Yah'shua (Jesus) is warning us about is the judgement that comes from carelessness with respect to obeying His commandments. Our union with Him as His allegorical Bride is as dependent on our care and obedience to His will as the harmony and eternalness of our own marriages are on the care and obedience of wives to their husbands.
This page was created on 16 June 2004
Last updated on 16 June 2004
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