Q. I have read your study on Matt: 25:1-13, about the 10 virgins. I have always believed this to be about the rapture of the church, but your explanation has convinced me it is about trib. believers, those who come to faith after the rapture. The only thing I am still confused about is v. 10. How can anyone come into the marriage after the rapture? Who would be left for the millennial kingdom?
A. In its most literal sense, the word translated marriage in Matt. 25:10 (KJV) denotes the wedding banquet, which follows the actual ceremony. Several versions of the Bible have it translated this way.
But remember this is a parable, in which everything is symbolic of something else. From the timing, we can see the Lord is describing something that takes place after the 2nd Coming (Matt. 24:29-30, Matt. 24:36-37).
In the context of the parable, the Lord is the bridegroom, the wedding banquet represents the Millennial Kingdom on Earth, and the 10 virgins represent tribulation believers. Five of them, who will have remained faithful to the end, will enter the Millennial kingdom. But the five who have not remained faithful will be refused entry.
This is one of the ways we know that after the rapture of the Church, salvation will no longer be guaranteed from the time we become believers, but will only be granted to those who stand firm to the end (Matt. 24:13). According to Rev. 12:17 and Rev. 14:12, standing firm to the end means obeying God’s commandments and holding to the testimony of Jesus.
Finally, notice the bride is not mentioned anywhere in the parable, and in any case a newly married bride could not be denied entry to her own wedding banquet.