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  #1  
Old Apr 11, '08, 6:42 pm
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Default Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

I'm doing a study on these forums of the parables. I'd like to study each parable individually looking at:

a) What is the Message behind the Parable?
b) What doctrines do we see being taught in each Parable?
c) Can a Parable be used to defend against Non-Catholic doctrines?
d) What is the context of the Parable?

If you like this study, you'll find others at:
Let's Study the Parables - 1 - The Good Samaritan
Let's Study the Parables - 2 The Wicked Vinedressers
Let's Study the Parables - 4 - The Wheat and the Cockle
Let's Study the Parables - 5 - The Prodigal Son

Or you could always find the Table of Contents on the Sticky on Sacred Scriptures:

With that in mind, I'd like to do a study on

The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

Scripture: Matthew 25:1-13

1 "Then the kingdom of heaven shall be compared to ten maidens who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. 2 Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. 3 For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them; 4 but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps. 5 As the bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept. 6 But at midnight there was a cry, `Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.'


7 Then all those maidens rose and trimmed their lamps. 8 And the foolish said to the wise, `Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.' 9 But the wise replied, `Perhaps there will not be enough for us and for you; go rather to the dealers and buy for yourselves.' 10 And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast; and the door was shut. 11 Afterward the other maidens came also, saying, `Lord, lord, open to us.' 12 But he replied, `Truly, I say to you, I do not know you.' 13 Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour.




BTW, thanks again Jaffy for the kind words!
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  #2  
Old Apr 11, '08, 7:19 pm
Catholic Dude Catholic Dude is offline
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Default Re: Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

Quote:
Originally Posted by NotWorthy View Post
I'm doing a study on these forums of the parables.
Great idea.
I think the title "The Bride's Girlfriends" is funny.

Quote:
I'd like to study each parable individually looking at:

a) What is the Message behind the Parable?
Be prepared. Jesus can come at any time and we need to be prepared at all times. If we are in sin we need to repent asap.

Quote:
b) What doctrines do we see being taught in each Parable?
The need to Persevere, and the possibility of falling away.

Quote:
c) Can a Parable be used to defend against Non-Catholic doctrines?
Yes. This parable disproves Once Saved Always Saved and in my opinion any attempt to pull OSAS out of it will do great violence to the text.

Quote:
d) What is the context of the Parable?
The time when Jesus returns, we dont know when but we should always be prepared and use the resources and guides He left behind. The "Kingdom of Heaven" stated at the beginning of the parable in this case means "the age of the Gospel" (for lack of a better term) where the Kingdom is the Church and its members.
The time when Jesus returns and accepts or rejects is obviously the judgment.


My question is what does this passage mean:
9 But the wise replied, `Perhaps there will not be enough for us and for you; go rather to the dealers and buy for yourselves.'
What does this mean as far as salvation is concerned? I understand it makes the parable work, but does it translate into something in our own lives?
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  #3  
Old Apr 12, '08, 6:20 am
japhy japhy is offline
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Default Re: Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

(All Church Father quotes are from the Catena Aurea on Matthew 25.)

a) What is the Message behind the Parable?

As Jesus himself said, “Watch, therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour.” Also, St. Jerome offers this wisdom: “seeing we know not the day of judgment, we should be careful in providing the light of good works.”

We do not know when the Lord will return, and when he does, it will be too late for us to make up what is lacking in ourselves. The righteous who will enter the kingdom cannot supply for the unrighteous who are left outside... not because they don't want to, but because they cannot:
“None of us shall be able in that day to stand forth as patron of those who are betrayed by their own works, not because he will not, because he cannot.” (St. Chrysostom)

“Each man shall receive the recompense of his own works, and the virtues of one cannot atone for the vices of another in the day of judgment.” (St. Jerome)

“No man is profited in God’s sight by the testimony of others, because God sees the heart, and each man is scarce able to give testimony concerning his own conscience.” (St. Augustine)
It is important, in this regard, to make it clear that this parable does not speak of our particular judgment and purgatory (wherein the suffrages of the living do benefit the righteous dead who are being purified), but rather the general judgment; for example, the parable deals with groups of people, even though said groups (of five) can be allegorized into representing the "complete" person: each group represents all five of our senses, directed either to the heavenly (wise) or the earthly (foolish), as interpreted by St. Gregory the Confessor, St. Jerome, and St. Augustine.

And, as for why it is better that we know not when the Lord will return: “If, now that we know not the end, we are careless, what would we do if we knew it? We would keep on our wickednesses even to the end.” (St. Theophilus)

b) What doctrines do we see being taught in each Parable?

I think, when we come to understand what is represented by the lamps and oil. Church Father commentary paints a pretty consistent picture, that the lamps are our faith, and the oil represents our [gasp!] good works. St. Augustine supports thus notion with Matthew 5:16: our light must shine before others that they may see our good works.

Faith in Jesus Christ is not enough to grant us entrance into the Kingdom of Heaven when the Lord returns. The foolish maidens knew the bridegroom, but that was not sufficient for them. In the words of St. Jerome: “After the day of judgment, there is no more opportunity for good works.” and “What avails it to confess with the mouth Him whom you deny with your works?”

c) Can a Parable be used to defend against Non-Catholic doctrines?

This parable speaks against "faith alone" and "once saved, always saved". (Matthew 25 is a most "Catholic" chapter of that gospel.)

d) What is the context of the Parable?

This parable describes the kingdom of heaven and those who are awaiting the Lord’s return. The first verse of this parable starts with the word "then", implying a certain time, and one that he has just told his disciples about.

The context, then, is found in Matthew 24: Jesus is speaking to his disciples privately, and they ask him “what will be the sign of your coming and of the close of the age?” (Matthew 24:3) Jesus tells them of signs, and of the suddenness of his return. He has just told them the parable of the faithful and unfaithful servants (from Luke 12:42-48), which is focused on the behavior of the servants in the household, especially at the time of the master's return. Therefore, the "Then..." in this parable refers to the second coming.

[My notes.]
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  #4  
Old Apr 13, '08, 7:12 am
Reynardus Reynardus is offline
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Default Re: Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

I always thought the lamps represented faith while the extra oil represented the "state of grace."

In daily life, we tend to get swept up in affairs of the world, thus the flame goes out for both groups of maidens. When the bridegroom comes (the final judgment or maybe our own natural deaths?), the faithful in the state of grace (the extra oil) enter heaven while those without ask the others to lend them their oil. Unfortunately, they can not impart sanctifying grace to the unfortunate bridesmaids and thus direct them to the dealers (represented by the Church or sacramental confession). But it is too late, the doors shut and they are forever locked out.

Just my own two cents.
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  #5  
Old Apr 13, '08, 3:32 pm
Catholic Dude Catholic Dude is offline
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Default Re: Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reynardus View Post
I always thought the lamps represented faith while the extra oil represented the "state of grace."

In daily life, we tend to get swept up in affairs of the world, thus the flame goes out for both groups of maidens. When the bridegroom comes (the final judgment or maybe our own natural deaths?), the faithful in the state of grace (the extra oil) enter heaven while those without ask the others to lend them their oil. Unfortunately, they can not impart sanctifying grace to the unfortunate bridesmaids and thus direct them to the dealers (represented by the Church or sacramental confession). But it is too late, the doors shut and they are forever locked out.

Just my own two cents.
I like that interpretation.
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  #6  
Old Apr 18, '08, 6:57 am
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Default Re: Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

His what the Navarre Bible says of this Parable. I thought it was pretty good, so I thought I'd add it.

Quote:
The parable centers on the attitude one should adopt up to the time when the bridegroom comes. IOW, it is not enough to know that one is "inside" the Kingdom, the Church: one has to be on the watch and be preparing for Christ's coming by doing good works. This vigilance should be continuous and unflaggind, because the devil is forever after us.
St. Augustine, in Sermons, 93, says
Quote:
Watch with the heart, watch with faith, watch with love, watch with charity, watch with good works...; make ready the lamps, make sure they do not go out..., renew them with the inner oil of an upright conscience; then shall the Bridegroom enfold you in the embrace of his love and bring you into his banquet room, where your lamp can never be extinguished
Those are marvelous words to ponder!!!
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  #7  
Old Apr 18, '08, 7:15 am
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Default Re: Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

I've helped plan a lot of weddings and "wise and foolish" accurately sums up the average collection of "bride's girlfriends". virgins, I am not equipped to comment.

since this is usually counted as one of the kingdom parables it teaches vigilance, and speaks against those who say we do not need preparation for sacraments or ministry.
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  #8  
Old Apr 18, '08, 7:17 am
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Default Re: Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

His what the Navarre Bible says of this Parable. I thought it was pretty good, so I thought I'd add it.

Quote:
The parable centers on the attitude one should adopt up to the time when the bridegroom comes. IOW, it is not enough to know that one is "inside" the Kingdom, the Church: one has to be on the watch and be preparing for Christ's coming by doing good works. This vigilance should be continuous and unflaggind, because the devil is forever after us.
St. Augustine, in Sermons, 93, says
Quote:
Watch with the heart, watch with faith, watch with love, watch with charity, watch with good works...; make ready the lamps, make sure they do not go out..., renew them with the inner oil of an upright conscience; then shall the Bridegroom enfold you in the embrace of his love and bring you into his banquet room, where your lamp can never be extinguished
Those are marvelous words to ponder!!!
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  #9  
Old Apr 18, '08, 7:25 am
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Default Re: Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

the parable is also counter-cultural for us because the Bridegroom, not the bride, is the central figure. Contemporary grooms, take heart, and also pay particular importance to the analogy between the relationship of the spouses in marriage to that of Christ with his Bride the Church.
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Old Jul 13, '08, 8:54 pm
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Default Re: Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

I was listening to a sermon from St. Ireneaus Ministries and the speaker was talking about how the lamp oil is our love for Christ. The 5 maidens who didn't have the oil were those that did good works (you see the girls are still out waiting for the master), but they lacked the love of Christ in their works. If we do that, then we are doing nothing.

It's when we do acts of charity out of love for Christ that we are storing up riches in heaven.
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Old Nov 20, '08, 2:23 pm
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Default Re: Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

Quote:
Originally Posted by NotWorthy View Post
I was listening to a sermon from St. Ireneaus Ministries and the speaker was talking about how the lamp oil is our love for Christ. The 5 maidens who didn't have the oil were those that did good works (you see the girls are still out waiting for the master), but they lacked the love of Christ in their works. If we do that, then we are doing nothing.

It's when we do acts of charity out of love for Christ that we are storing up riches in heaven.
Well put - the faith and the love come before and will outlast the works - whhhhyyyyy can you others not see this..Our works are nothing - nothing - nothing without our faith FIRST. None of us are worthy - no not one of us - without faith and love!
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Old Nov 6, '11, 12:29 pm
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Default Re: Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

Hi, Brownjt,

I guess the "...whhhyyyyy..." part of your question is that Faith and Works () are really brought to the Table together. We must have both with Faith enlivening Works and Works demonstrating Faith. Any coin that only has a 'head' would be considered defective - any coin with two 'heads' would be considered counterfeit. Honest coins have both a 'head' and a 'tail' - honest Christians have both Faith and Works - as two sides of the same coin.

Maybe it is just me ... but, when I read and then re-read your post, I thought this was an effort to promote a "faith alone" position. Is this what you meant?

God bless


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Well put - the faith and the love come before and will outlast the works - whhhhyyyyy can you others not see this..Our works are nothing - nothing - nothing without our faith FIRST. None of us are worthy - no not one of us - without faith and love!
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Old Nov 6, '11, 3:27 pm
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Default Re: Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

I was listening to the wisdom of Fr. Groeshel on the radio today. And he was explaining how his mother was a charitable person who did good works. But, he said, when she went to be judged by Christ, and asked why she should be let into heaven, she did not say that she should be because of her works. Her claim to be let into heaven would be the blood of Jesus shed on the cross. It is only by Christ's redeeming sacrifice and by his blood that we can enter heaven. And, because she was merciful in her life God would show her mercy and listen to her. For, blessed are the merciful for they will be shown mercy.
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Old Nov 6, '11, 6:35 pm
tqualey tqualey is offline
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Default Re: Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

Hi, Fisherman Carl,

You know, this is really a complex issue - and one that has to be taken slowly. So, let me give it my best effort.

First - Sin closed the Gates of Heaven - and only the sacrifice of Christ on the Cross opened them. There is nothing we can do to 'earn' our way into heaven. By the same token, the sacrifice of Christ did not kick us through these Gates - we must use our free will to freely cooperate with the Grace of God.

Second AND Second - we must have Faith but, Faith is like gasoline - unless put into the engine, nothing will get accomplished And wil ust have works as like the engine that the gasoline will power. Both are essential and one without the other is a fraud!

So, Fr. Groeshel's mother was indeed saved by the Blood of the Lamb - just like every human being past, present and future. But, unless she cooperated with the Grace of God and followed the commands of Christ - she would be a lost soul.

None of these items can be isolated for long - or else you wind up with a heresy. A famous one is OSAS - 'once saved always saved' - but we clearly see the folly in that from today's Gospel about the wise and foolish virgins.

God bless


Quote:
Originally Posted by fisherman carl View Post
I was listening to the wisdom of Fr. Groeshel on the radio today. And he was explaining how his mother was a charitable person who did good works. But, he said, when she went to be judged by Christ, and asked why she should be let into heaven, she did not say that she should be because of her works. Her claim to be let into heaven would be the blood of Jesus shed on the cross. It is only by Christ's redeeming sacrifice and by his blood that we can enter heaven. And, because she was merciful in her life God would show her mercy and listen to her. For, blessed are the merciful for they will be shown mercy.
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Old Nov 7, '11, 2:57 am
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Default Re: Let's Study the Parables - 6 - The Bride's Girlfriends (or The Ten Virgins)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Catholic Dude View Post
My question is what does this passage mean:
9 But the wise replied, `Perhaps there will not be enough for us and for you; go rather to the dealers and buy for yourselves.'
What does this mean as far as salvation is concerned? I understand it makes the parable work, but does it translate into something in our own lives?
An explanation that I heard during the Sunday homily:

This particular passage, with reference to our lives, means that we cannot rely on the good works, or the grace received, by others for our own salvation. We need to be in a state of grace ourselves, and do good works so that our own light may shine, and that people will praise our Father in Heaven (St. Matthew 5: 16).

In other words (to quote our priest), we can't say "my father was a pious man" or "my mother was devout" and expect that to save us from the Judgment to come. While we can certainly learn from them (and ask the Saints and angels to intercede for us), ultimately, if we have no oil in our lamps, we cannot "borrow" it from others at the eleventh hour.

(I'm paraphrasing here, but I think I've got what he said across quite accurately.)
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