The Parable Of The 10 Virgins

Q. Re: your article “The Parable of the Ten Virgins.” If oil represents the Holy Spirit then how did the foolish virgins have it in the beginning and run out. How is it possible to run out of the Holy Spirit, and then go get more. Did they run out of the Holy Spirit and lose their salvation?

A. As you know, I believe that the parable of the 10 virgins speaks about a time on Earth just after the 2nd Coming, and that these 10 represent Tribulation survivors.

During the Church Age the Holy Spirit is sealed within believers as a guarantee of our inheritance (Ephes. 1:13-14). But only the church is promised this and the Church will be long gone by this time.

No such guarantee is mentioned for Tribulation believers. In fact Rev. 16:15 specifically warns them to stay awake and maintain their righteousness, symbolized by keeping their clothes with them. (Clothing is often used to represent righteousness, as in Isaiah 61:10).

Rev. 16:15 implies that Tribulation believers are responsible for remaining steadfast in their faith to avoid losing their salvation. Matt. 25:8 agrees, telling us that all 10 virgins had oil in their lamps at the beginning, but the five foolish ones didn’t have enough to carry them through.

All 10 fell asleep and their lamps were in danger of going out. Only 5 had the ability to replenish their lamps with oil they had brought, and refused to lend any to the others. (You can’t “lend” the Holy Spirit to someone.)

So yes, the parable would seem to indicate that Tribulation believers are not promised eternal security and the five who fell asleep spiritually did not have time to restore their salvation when they finally woke up and found that the Lord had returned. It was too late.

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