For Bible background read Matthew 25:1-13
They all had some knowledge of and regard for the bridegroom.
They all had lamps that were burning/lit.
While the bridegroom tarried they all slept. Not until his coming was announced did the difference between them really reveal itself. In all outward things the wise and foolish virgins were alike; the difference between them was internal.
The foolish ones had a real regard for the bridegroom, they had gone far to meet him, and were disappointed at their exclusion. It is not that there were 5 believers and 5 unbelievers in this story that Jesus told; there were 10 believers waiting for His arrival in this illustration.
There was genuineness about them as far as they went; only they did not go far enough. They were not deliberate hypocrites (i.e. acting as though they had more religion than they actually did). No, my friend, they had some feeling of attachment to Christ. They had certain impulses Christ-ward which they did not resist, but they were not completely consecrated; they had a bit of the presence of the Holy Spirit but not at a full measure.
Character is confirmed by crisis. A man has only as much religion as he desires and can muster in the moment of trial. The minor surprises of life that come our way are to prepare us for the last emergency. Character is a personal thing and cannot be passed from one person to another, but must be acquired and manifested by each one for himself. I cannot give you my courage to fortify you for your duty. How perilous to leave preparation for the testing times till they have come upon us. Every time we perform duty the soul is made stronger. It is thereby the store of oil is obtained. 1 Peter 1:5,7
Right now is the time to be fully prepared. Certain lost opportunities cannot be recalled.
–Pastor Ward Clinton
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