Did your mother ever tell you that you had to share? Most mothers do. I find it interesting that children are forced to share when it is not a habit that is practised by most adults. While discussing this with a friend the other day, the parable of the ten virgins came to mind. (Matthew 25:1-13). Five of the ten came prepared for the long wait with extra oil for their lamps, and five didn’t. The ones who were unprepared asked the others to share their oil. If that were to happen today, would the prepared virgins be criticized for not sharing? Would they be called mean, just because they prepared for themselves but not enough to also take care of others? After all, we know from other passages in the Bible that God likes us to care for the needy (James 1:27, Matthew 25:40) and He loves a cheerful giver. (II Corinthians 9:7)
To be honest, sharing was not really the point of the parable, but it is interesting that the five virgins who wouldn’t share were not condemned for it. They were commended for being prepared, while the ones who had not brought enough oil to get them through the night were called foolish and were banned from the wedding feast.
Preparation is the point of the parable. Since it is a parable, the focus is to be spiritually prepared for eternity. The oil is representative of the Holy Spirit. There are many who call themselves Christians, perhaps because their parents did or because that’s the kind of church they go to, but only those who have truly accepted Christ as Saviour will be invited to the eternal wedding feast. This is your own decision--something you have to do on your own. No one on earth can share eternal life with you, but you can accept it as a free gift from God.