Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of September 20, 2009
- Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of September 20, 2009
As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho
Press, here is a selection from our book of daily
devotions, "Living as the Beloved: One Day at a
Time," by the Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.
Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
meditation. we hope you will be blessed.
Thank you for forwarding this to your friends.
The parable of the ten virgins
Jesus said, "Then the kingdom of heaven will be
like this. Ten bridesmaids took their lamps and
went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were
foolish, and five were wise. 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, all of them became
drowsy and slept. But at midnight there was a
shout, 'Look! Here is the bridegroom! Come out
to meet him.' Then all those bridesmaids got up
and trimmed their lamps. The foolish said to the
wise, 'Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are
going out.' But the wise replied, 'No! There will
not be enough for you and for us; you had better
go to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.'
And while they went to buy it, the bridegroom
came, and those who were ready went with him into
the wedding banquet; and the door was shut. Later
the other bridesmaids came also, saying, 'Lord,
lord, open to us.' But he replied, 'Truly I tell
you, I do not know you.' Keep awake therefore,
for you know neither the day nor the hour."
Are we wise, alert, and prepared? Or are we
foolish and unprepared? Today we need honest
self-discernment to understand this lesson about
the kingdom of heaven.
It is a disturbing parable for the latecomers who
miss the wedding feast and find the door closed in
their faces. The doorkeeper has these chilling
words for the foolish virgins, "I tell you the
truth, I do not know you." F. F. Bruce notes in
The Hard Sayings of Jesus that the ten virgins did
not appear to have been bridesmaids or even specially
invited guests. He suggests they were local village
girls who decided to form a torchlight procession
and escort the bridegroom and his party to the house
where the wedding feast was to be held. They knew
if they did, there would be a place at the feast for
them, where they could share the good cheer. Even
today centuries later, there are parts of the world
where a wedding feast is a public occasion for the
neighborhood. All who come will find a welcome and
something to eat and drink.
There was no time announced for the event. Some of
the waiting women were wise and brought extra oil
for their lamps. Others were foolish and unprepared.
Those who had prepared did not share their oil supply
with the foolish ones. Those refused entry to the
wedding banquet returned to their homes in the dark,
tired and disappointed.
All the oil was good while it lasted, but not
everyone prepared enough for tomorrow's needs.
We cannot always rely on yesterday's experiences
of grace. We must be prepared and watchful every
day. Times of testing come without warning. Will
we be prepared and wise? Or will we be foolish?
So it will be when Christ returns for the second
time. We do not know the day or the hour.
God, Jesus had a reason for teaching this parable.
Bless my understanding and help me live more alertly
Grace and peace,
Chi Rho Press
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