Briefing: Are you ready for duty? Some have an extra set of cuffs, some have a backup weapon and I have even seen officers who carry a backup flashlight. I always carry extra magazines, five in all. We all have basic equipment but if it really hits the fan, are you prepared?
Dispatch (Assignment): Read Matthew 25:1-13.
On the Street: In this parable, Jesus tells us of the bridegroom and the virgins who were waiting for Him. There are three important points to keep in mind:
1. All ten of the virgins knew He was coming, but not all of them were prepared. We, as Christians, have to live a life of preparedness. Just like getting ready for duty every day in putting on your armor and weapons. We have to get up every day preparing ourselves for Christ’s return.
2. It is interesting that all ten had their own light. Christians are called to reflect Christ’s light. Jesus tells us to be salt and light in a dark world. This light cannot be shared. We have to have our own light. These virgins are in a dark environment and without the light, they are undistinguishable. We are called to be like a city on a hill, letting your light shine for all to see. Don’t hide in the dark.
3. They have to cross thickness to get to the bridegroom. Life is a journey and there are paths that we take. If we walk in darkness, we cannot see which path is the right one. We have to have the light to see where we are going, otherwise we will fall into the pit.
How can we prepare ourselves for this journey? This is a spiritual matter that has to be taken care of in your spirit. As stated above, when you get ready for work, you put on your armor: vest, gun belt, badge and equipment. Spiritually, you also have armor to wear. Galatians 6:10-18 lays out the armor of God. This is the battle gear for the spiritual warfare we face daily. Can you imagine going on duty as a cop and not taking your gun belt? How would you perform your duties if you had to arrest a dangerous suspect? You can’t do your job without your equipment. The same is true in your Christian journey. You must know and apply the armor of God.
Highlights from this Read: We see in verse 5 that all became drowsy and fell asleep. I think of the disciples who fell asleep when Jesus was praying in the garden of Gethsemane. Jesus said, “The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak”. It is comforting to know that if I do fall asleep, Jesus will wake me at the appointed time as He did with the disciples in the garden and the bridegroom with the virgins.
In verse 11, the virgins run to the door and call out, “Sir, Sir”. In verse 12, Jesus says, “But he replied, “I tell you the truth, I don’t know you”. For insight, we have to go back to 7:21 when Jesus said, “Not everyone who says to me, “Lord, Lord” will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven”.
Verse 13 says that no one knows the day or hour of His return. In other verses, Jesus does allude to us being able to discern the season of His return. He tells us there will be a crown for those who look for Him.
Investigational Resources: Matthew 5:13, 7:21 and Luke 13:24-25.
Officer Safety Principle: I have no doubt you are a wise cop, but are you a wise Christian? Are you prepared spiritually?
from The Gospel of Matthew Through the Eyes of a Cop
©by Charles Gilliland. Used by permission.
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