After sharing astounding prophecies with His Disciples in chapter 24, Jesus teaches them what they should do with this incredible information - beginning with the most important thing...
As you get your place, find your place in the scriptures, I want to tell you about a TV show I watched growing up this this TV show ran from 1983 all the way through 1994, and it featured a painter by the name of Bob Ross. Now, a show of hands. When I say the name Bob Ross, does that register to anyone here? Does anyone know what I'm talking about? Yeah, almost everyone. The joy of painting is what it's called.
Yes, Aaron. He's a he's a legend. And there's a couple of things about walrus. Number one, if you know who Bob Ross and if you don't know Google and do yourself a favor and Google him at the end of the night. Incredible voice, the most soothing, most calming voice maybe I've ever heard in my entire life. I am certain that Big Pharma would lose billions of dollars in sales in sleeping AIDS if people just realized that you can plug in an MP3 and listen to Bob Ross speak to you as you tried to go to sleep and you wouldn't last more than five minutes, the soothing nature of his voice is incredible.
But beyond that, he didn't have a show because of his voice. That was just a bonus. He was actually a really good painter. His shows were 30 minutes long and he started with a blank canvas and ended always with a masterpiece every every time. And as I have observed, I'm a Bob Ross kind of aficionado here.
I've seen a lot.
He he paints his paintings and we, like other painters, do this as well in layers. He paints them in stages and usually landscapes of nature.
But what you'd notice always, he'd start by distinguishing the sky from the ground or the land or the mountain range, and he would do that first. Second, later, he began to add on more detail, he bit closer mountain ranges, more more trees, some more detail, he'd layer that on top.
And then when that's done, he'd come even closer to your vision than a real 3D, where he began to add little shrubs or rocks and shadings and light, and he'd add these layers as his painting would develop at the end. One painting only multiple layers made up that painting and it was always impressive. Now.
Jesus paints a wonderful masterpiece for us in Matthew, Chapter 25, and he doesn't paint this masterpiece on the kinds of materials that you can find in any art store, he paints this work of art on the canvas of our hearts and our minds, and he uses words to paint this picture.
And like Bob Ross, Jesus paints this picture in layers, each successive layer, giving us more and more detail of the overall picture.
And so what's this picture, Jesus, of painting in Matthew 25? Here's the scene and it's going to be the first fill in on your outline. Jesus physically comes back to Earth and he sets up his kingdom where he rules and reigns. Some people enter into his kingdom and some people will not. Jesus physically comes back to Earth and he sets up his kingdom where he rules and reigns, some people will enter into his kingdom and some people will not.
That's the picture that he's painted for us in all of Chapter 25 of Matthew's Gospel, The Kingdom of Heaven, finally, finally here on earth. This is what Jesus had been preaching throughout the entirety of his public preaching ministry. If you go all the way back to Matthew, chapter four, verse 17, it marks at the very beginning of his ministry after he was baptized, after he faced Satan and the temptations in the wilderness that says this and so on your outline as well.
From that time, Jesus began to preach saying Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. The kingdom come coming, guys, as close as near get ready. The Kingdom of Heaven is what Jesus taught his disciples to pray in Matthew Chapter six verses nine to ten. Jesus told them this. Pray then like this our father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come your will be done on Earth as it is in heaven. This this idea of the Kingdom is what was on everybody's mind the day that Jesus hopped on a on the fall of a donkey and rode into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, only a week before he was crucified.
All the Jews in that day who were in Jerusalem for the Passover saw Jesus coming, knew exactly what that picture meant. They knew the prophecy from Zechariah nine nine, which reads like this Rejoice greatly. O Daughter of Zion shout aloud. Oh, daughter of Jerusalem. Behold your king is coming to you righteous and having salvation. Is he humble and mounted on a donkey on a colt. The fall of a donkey. They saw him riding that. This is it.
This is the prophecy fulfilled. Our King is here. The kingdom is coming. But this is what turned people on Jesus only days after they were yelling, Hosanna, Hosanna, Hosanna! Not long after he arrived, they began to clue in the people in Jerusalem at that time, Israel. Wait a second, he's not here to actually overthrow the Romans. And the repression is not looking like he's establishing a physical, literal kingdom here right now, right in our midst.
And as soon as they realize, as soon as pilot brought battered and tortured Jesus out to the crowd, what did the crowd scream in the courtyard? Crucify him a week, a week earlier when Jesus rode in on the on the donkey. Hosanna, Hosanna Salvacion, the kingdoms here, the kingdoms here. But when the kingdom didn't come the way that they thought, they turned yelling out for his crucifixion.
The kingdom is what the disciples were asking Jesus about in the beginning of Matthew Chapter 20 for the very beginning in verse three, it says, as he sat on the Mount of Olives, Jesus, the disciples came to him privately saying, tell us, when will these things be and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age. The disciples thought Jesus was coming to establish his kingdom the first time then.
And when he didn't, they asked, When are you going to come and do it? Jesus. And this is what Jesus has been talking about in response to their question. What Pastor Jeff has been walking us through all through Chapter 24 of Matthew's Gospel. Jesus says, look for these things before I come. All the birth pains, all the wars and the rumors of wars, the earthquakes, the famines, all these things happening in greater frequency and greater intensity.
Before I come back, look for the Antichrist, the abomination of desolation set up in the holy of holies in the temple three and a half years into the tribulation. Look for the cosmic signs in the heavens, the sun and the moon and the stars, all that stuff being shaken. Look for all of these things before what? Before I come back and establish my kingdom here on the Earth. This kingdom that we're talking about is a literal earthly kingdom that is coming, one that's not established on earth yet and that's obvious.
I hope there's two reasons why we know that the kingdom is not here right now in the way that is going to be obvious. Point number one, Jesus isn't here.
Jesus isn't here anyway. Yes, he's in our hearts spiritually, but he's not physically here. The king. You can't have a kingdom without a king. And so that's one reason we know that the literal kingdom is not here yet.
But reason number two, things like disease, addiction, corruption, abuse, injustice, racism, poverty, death, divorce, sorrow, regret, temptation. And on and on and on. These things all exist in abundance right now. And we know that when Jesus comes, he's going to undo all of those things. And so we have a taste of the kingdom, the spirits in us now.
But we're waiting for the finality of the king coming and the establishing of his kingdom here on Earth, his literal kingdom, which a rule and reign over it all come, Lord Jesus, we pray.
And when this kingdom comes, there's going to be both an entrance into it and an exclusion from it. This is part of the painting, too, that Jesus paints for us in Matthew 25 in our Verse is tonight we're going to see in Matthew twenty five verse is one to thirteen. We see the wise bridesmaids going into the kingdom, but we also see the foolish ones not going in next week. As we look at Verse is 14 to 30, we're going to see the faithful servants are going in, but the wicked servant is not.
And then finally, in verses thirty one to forty six of the same chapter, we're going to see that the sheep are going in, but the goats are not going in.
All of this is the picture Jesus has painted for us in Matthew 25. Which forces us to ask a gigantic question. Who are these ones who are actually going to be the ones going into the kingdom of heaven when it comes, and who are the ones that are going to be kept out? When it comes to this question, asking it and answering it. Literally, nothing else matters in our lives, nothing else matters. We have so many things going on in our life right now, and I and I care about them all.
I care about all the the great victories and the successes that you get to experience in this life before Jesus comes. And I care about all the heartache and the sorrow, the unanswered promises that people make, the the disappointments, the pain, the suffering, all all of it. We care and we care for one another. The scriptures say that we're sorrowful, yet always rejoice. And we're holding these things in the balance. And as brothers and sisters in Christ, we care about each other's lives.
And these things are real problems right now. But what I want to highlight for you is that in that day, in that moment when the king's feet touches down and the kingdom is established and entrance is granted and you're standing and people are standing and you're either going in or you're going out in that moment, none of your problems today are going to matter. None of them are going to matter. And you're not going to care about them and they're not going to be registered in that moment.
All you're going to care about in that moment is, am I in or am I not? Period. Period. So who are going to be these ones going in when Jesus comes back?
This brings us to the first layer of the painting that Jesus is giving us here in Matthew 25. And it's going to be the next fill in on your outline. A person must be ready for Jesus when he comes back. If they are going to enter into his kingdom, a person must be ready for Jesus when he comes back if they're going to enter into his kingdom. Let me read our text for us, Matthew. Chapter 25, verses one to 13.
Then the Kingdom of Heaven will be like 10 virgins who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish and five were wise. For when the foolish took their laps, they took no oil with them, but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps.
As the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and slept. But at midnight there was a cry. Here's the bridegroom come out to meet him. Then all those virgins rose and trimmed their lamps, and the foolish said to the wise, Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out. But the wise answered same, since there will not be enough for us and for you. Go rather to the dealers and buy for yourselves. And while they were going to buy, the bridegroom came and those who were ready went in with them to the marriage feast and the door was shut.
Afterwards, the other virgins came also saying Lord Lord opened to us. But he answered, truly. I say to you, I do not know. You watch therefore for for, you know, neither the day nor the hour. The scene of this parable that we're looking at is a wedding scene is a Jewish wedding if you're unfamiliar with Jewish weddings. I'm going to compare them to the weddings that we know in our culture today to see if we can learn a little bit more about them.
There are some similarities and some differences. The things that we keep in common with our marriage and the marriage of the Jewish custom is this is the highlight of the calendar year is the highlight of the week, the highlight of the month, the highlight of the year. The most joyous and festive celebration that comes around is exciting people pouring time, energy and money and joy to celebrate weddings. And that's what they have in common around the world. When people get married, there's a there's a common thread.
It's an exciting time. It's not a downer. But here's where they differ. Marriage in our culture today has only two main parts to it. Part number one, the engagement. That's the surprise in the ring and Instagram posts. That's engagement today, part one. And then part two is the wedding. And that's a big to do. That's the family, the friends, the ceremony, the pictures, the food, the party, the everything.
So two parts for our our marriage and our culture. But marriage in the Middle Eastern culture has three main parts. Part number one, they have an engagement, but it's also known as it's called it's an arrangement. Parents are involved with the engagement process in other parts of the world. And usually in this exchange, there would be financial transactions that go back and forth, including a bride price.
When I was younger, I was I was quite put off by the idea of arranged marriages, I thought they were savage, loving, and then I got older and then I had a daughter and I noticed that if you can read in between the lines.
So. That's part one, the engagement, which is also the arrangement, here's part two, then they had the ceremony or otherwise known as the betrothal period.
This would include all the vows and all the legalities that will be a legally binding part of the engagement. Not fully married yet, but binding by law. You would actually need a divorce certificate to break off the marriage process at this stage at betrothal. If the groom died at this stage, the woman would be considered a widow at this point and the party hasn't happened yet at betrothal. The marriage hasn't been consummated at this stage yet. But this is part two.
Between the time of the betrothal and the time of the wedding celebration, the groom would go away for a period of time to prepare for their new home together, usually built as an addition to his father's house. And when that was all done, he would come back for his bride to take her part to. Which brings us to part three. The wedding celebration. The Jewish wedding celebration would celebrate with and party with family and friends. And the celebration would last for days.
And then they would consummate the marriage in this time as well, and then live their lives for the rest of their lives, hopefully happily ever after. And this is what we see in our text. This is the scene that we see in our text. The groom is coming back any moment and the wedding party is getting ready to meet him. And the wedding festivities are about to begin. And if the bridegroom came in the middle of the night like he did, torches will be necessary to walk through the streets on the way to the celebration.
You might notice in your Bible, it uses the word lamps. The better translation is actually torch is a different word and it's a torch that they would use.
And this is the picture Jesus paints for us of his coming back. So he's already come once already. And when he came that first time, he paid the bride price for his bride, he gave his life up for her on the cross, shed his blood for her, and then he went away for a time to get things ready. But he's coming back. He's coming back. And when he does, we party. And when he does, we party.
And this is the picture of the coming kingdom. This is what we long for as his church. This is what we long for as his people come, Lord Jesus come. We're tired of what is happening right now. We're tired of living in the apocalypse every day. We're tired of the moths. We're tired of the fire. We're tired of all the politics. We're tired of injustice. We're tired of death and murder and corruption. We're tired of it all.
And our hearts long and beat for the king to come back because when he comes back, this is done. And its pleasures forevermore at his right hand, do it. Lord, we pray. Now, in the parable, Jesus gives us here when the bridegroom finally comes. Do all the bridesmaids go in? To the wedding feast, no, only some of the bridesmaids go into the marriage feast again, I know it says virgins in our text, but they were really bridesmaids of the bride.
Unmarried girls who are friends or family of the bride made up the bridal party. So virgins here are bridesmaids. Might you choose to use that word moving forward.
But only five of the 10 bridesmaids got to go to the wedding, and that's kind of a big deal. Because of this, I want to spend some time noting some of the similarities and some of the differences between all of the bridesmaids and our text, because doing this, I think, is going to help shed some light for us on who ends up going into the kingdom when it comes and who doesn't. Now, there are a lot of similarities between all 10 bridesmaids.
They were all aware that the bridegroom was coming. Eventually they were all invited to the marriage feast. They were all included in the wedding plans. They all made some preparations to go. They were all together waiting in the same place. They all had torches. They all were expecting to go when he arrived. And they all slept at appropriate times in the day, like at night, when people normally sleep, they all did this. There's only one difference, one main difference between the five wise bridesmaids and the five foolish ones, only one.
Verse is, two to four in our text, says five of them are foolish and five were wise, four when the Foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them, but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps. Five Broadway with them and five did not bring a single drop of oil with them, the Weisbrod oil with them so that they could actually use their torches at night, no oil, no fire, nothing. The foolish didn't bring any, not even a little bit.
And how are they ever going to light their torch? When the groom came having their torches was useless without having any oil?
Utterly useless. And this is the only difference between the two groups of bridesmaids in our Perabo having oil or not having the oil. And so what does this mean for us today? What do we draw, what are these similarities and these differences mean for us today? Well, all 10 of the bridesmaids, as we've seen, were aware, invited, included, had made some preparations and they were expecting the bridegroom, but only some ended up actually going into the marriage feast.
I believe this paints a picture for us of the group of people that exists right now all over the world today who would profess to be followers of Jesus Christ.
The world is full today and will be at the time when Jesus comes back of people who profess to be Christians, there are so many and this group of people who profess to be Christians is actually made up of two subgroups. There are those who are actually what they profess to be. I'm a Christian and I actually am one. But in this group of professing believers is a group of people that profess to be Christians and they aren't actually Christians.
And it's very difficult to tell the difference between the two groups and why is it so hard? Because like in our text, they all look the same. They all look the same. All of the 10 bridesmaids look the same.
And here's what this looks like in the gathering of people who profess Christ today in the church today, what this looks like, every person who professes to be a Christian is aware that Jesus is coming back in some form. Everyone who professes to be a Christian is invited to enter the kingdom. They're invited. Everyone everyone is included in the plans. And and everyone who professes Christ is making some form of preparation themselves. The bridesmaids all had their torches. We have our version of torches in the church today, and that includes outward forms of religious practices, attending church, reading the Bible, singing worship songs, giving money, telling others about Jesus and any other religious things that you can think of any other exterior outward forms of religious practices.
I believe that this is the symbol that the torches are conveying to us. But the entire group of people who call themselves Christian, only some are actually going to enter the kingdom when Jesus comes back and some are going to hear what the bridegroom says to the five foolish bridesmaids, In verses, 11 to 12 says this.
Afterward, the other virgins came also saying, Lord, Lord, open to us.
But he answered, truly, I say to you, I do not know you, and so what's the difference then?
What's the difference between those who profess to be Christians and are going into the kingdom when it comes and those who profess to be Christians and are not going in? What's the difference if they all look the same outwardly? In our parable, what was it what was the difference between all of the bridesmaids, the only difference, the oil, the wives, the five wives had the oil and the five foolish didn't have the oil. This is so important. What's the oil for us?
Before you answer out loud, then we think about this with me.
What's the only thing the only thing that a person needs to have in their life in order for them to enter the kingdom of heaven? What's the only thing I heard mouth in? Whispered Jesus, the Holy Spirit.
You need to actually have Jesus. You need to have Jesus. A person needs to have him in order to be in his kingdom with him forever. You need him. That's it, and having him this goes beyond something, this goes beyond simply believing that Jesus exists or believing that he's got this goes beyond simply believing that he died and rose again. This goes beyond simply believing that he's coming back one day. The devil believes all those things I just listed for you and trust me, the devil is not going to be in the kingdom with us when Jesus comes back.
No, you need something beyond that.
You actually need to have the living presence of God with you and in you.
You need to actually have him in your life, spiritually, in you, on the inside of your life. You need Jesus. That's where the oil is such a powerful item in this parable. The oil represents always throughout the Bible, as far as I know, the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit.
And a person gets the Holy Spirit only after what? Repenting of their sins and turning and placing all their faith and trust in the person and work of Jesus, laying down everything to give their lives to following Christ and receiving everything that he's done for them, and the moment that a person does that for the first time, the spirit of the living God, the spirit that hovered over the waters of creation, the spirit that rose Christ from the dead, comes to dwell you, lives inside of you and you.
Now in the moment, in the twinkling of an eye, become a temple of the Holy Spirit. God himself dwelling in you. Then and only then do you have the oil that you need in order to be ready for when Jesus comes back, that's the divide. Jesus is the divide. He's always the divide. Jesus, it's very possible. And according to our text, even common for a person to call themselves a Christian and not actually be a Christian because it's possible to call yourself a Christian and not have Jesus.
So does Jesus give us a way to tell who has the Holy Spirit in them and who doesn't? Yes. Those are the next two layers of Matthew 25 masterpiece that Jesus paints for us, and we're going to look at that question more carefully over the next two weeks.
But now I want to give you some takeaways from this text as you leave here tonight. I got four takeaways I want to leave you with. And these are going to be the last four fillings on your outline. Take away no one from our text. Jesus alone is the readiness you need to enter the kingdom. Jesus alone is the readiness you need to enter the kingdom, because this is not a parable that teaches that only some Christians will enter the kingdom.
This is not saying that all ten bridesmaids are Christians and some Christians are just really prepared and eager and ready. And they're going in and some genuine Christians are just having a nap and they're not ready and they don't care and they're not going. And that's not what this parable is teaching. It's not saying everyone's a Christian is saying that everyone professes and some are and some aren't. But the only thing that you need to have is Jesus and him alone. This is in every genuine Christian will enter the gates of Kingdom in that day.
If you have Jesus, then you're ready to go. When it's time take away. No to. Jesus is the one size fits all kind of readiness you need for eternal life. Jesus is the one size fits all kind of readiness you need for eternal life. As we look at our parable, our text, we have some things, we have a marriage feast, we have a bridegroom, we have bridesmaids with something glaring is missing from this parable in a wedding feast in a marriage.
What's what's missing? There's no bride like the star of a normal weddings is not here. How many times are you going to have a wedding without a bride? The bride is noticeably absent from this parable. And some Bible teacher suggests, though we don't need to or shouldn't make too much out of this omission and that we shouldn't read too much into every part of every parable that's given to us. Well, they're wrong, as Jeff says, and I quote and I to say, I'm not one of those Bible teachers, I'm not one because how do you have a marriage celebration without a bride?
Can you imagine going to a wedding today and there's no bride? Do you think people would see no bride and continue on the day without skipping a beat? Like, yeah, yeah, yeah. But like, there's still a buffet, right? There's still a buffet. You know, the bride's not here. I don't think that was going to happen. Everything got shut down.
If she doesn't come to the altar, if there's cold feet. The bride in the New Testament is the church is the church and the church is the whole group of people who have repented of their sins and believed on Christ for the forgiveness of their sins. Jesus has paid for us with his life. Consider that a bride price the purchase us. He's washed us and made us spiritually white as snow. Think white wedding garments.
And now we wait for our bridegroom to come and get us the apostle Paul makes this connection very plainly in Ephesians Chapter five verses thirty one to thirty two when he compares marriage of a bride and the groom to the church with Jesus together. Listen to what he says. Therefore, a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife and the two shall become one flesh.
This mystery is profound and I'm saying that it refers to Christ and the Church Jesus as the bridegroom. The church is the bride, and he's coming for us. So then I got to ask, why would the bride be absent from this parable of Jesus when everything to do is with a marriage feast?
Where's the bride? I believe that's because at this time in history, when Jesus comes back to the Earth, he's already taken his bride away. The church is already gone when the picture we are looking at unfolds on the earth in real time. The bride is missing from this parable because the church has been raptured. And that means that this parable is directed towards those who will be alive on Earth at the time of the second coming of Jesus Christ. The scene of this painting that Jesus paints for us is of the scene that takes place when Jesus physically, physically comes back to the Earth at the end of Daniel's seventieth week, the end of the world as we know it.
And because of this, because of this, the church is raptured tribulation saints and those who think they are there, everyone's waiting for Jesus to come back because of this. Some someone might be tempted to say, I'm not going to be around then when he actually physically comes back.
So then this message doesn't really apply to me. But it does apply to you and it applies to every single one of us and to every single person alive today, here's why. Because there are only three possible ways, as far as I can count, three possible ways that you or I or anyone else will ever transition from this life into eternity, only three ways away. Number one, the most common by far. You will physically die one day and then you're going to stand before the judge of all the earth.
Way number two, you will be raptured one day and then you will stand before the judge of all the Earth. Or option three, you will be alive when Jesus comes back, are seen, and then you will stand before the judge of all the Earth. Any way you slice it, you're going to stand before him and do you know what you need in order to be ready for any of those three scenarios? You need to have what we've been discussing here tonight, you need Jesus, period.
So no matter who you are or what period of time you're living in, you and the people you love need Christ. And it's in this sense that Jesus is a one size fits all kind of readiness that every single one of us needs. Third take away is the next fill in on your outline, faith in Jesus is non-transferable. Faith in Jesus is nontransferable, the foolish bridesmaids didn't have the oil, they came to the bridesmaids, they had the all they tried to get some they tried to leach some off of them.
And were they able to know? They couldn't. Because the reason I can't I can't give you some. I can't give you some. And what this is, because the oil is actually having a saving relationship with Jesus, what this is telling us, I believe, is that we can only have faith for ourselves. We can only believe for ourselves as much as I would want to, as much as I I wish I could and I would do it.
We can't believe in a saving way for another person. I can't throw my faith onto their life and have that be good for them. When Jesus comes back or he calls them to himself. Every single person has to make a decision before they die, before they see the judge of all the Earth to receive Christ or not. I wish we could believe for people, if we could do that, all my friends, all my family, all my enemies, everyone in the world, we go into heaven, if I could do it.
And so would be the same for you, I am sure, but we can't and this is why we preach and why we implore people to believe on Jesus, because we want them in the kingdom with us. We want them in, and they aren't getting in without him. And this is why the church needs to hear a message like this is for us to encourage us and to teach us the word and to look forward to is coming.
But it's not supposed to terminate on us.
We're not supposed to leave this room tonight saying, well, I'm good because I got the oil is supposed to stir me up with compassion for my friends, my families and my neighbors and everyone that I know who doesn't have Jesus. I need to see them as the foolish bridesmaid I need to see. I got we've got to find a way to get you some oil. I can't give it to you, but let me take you to the one who can and we go to leverage our entire life to that end, because like I said earlier, when he comes back and the kingdom's established, nothing else matters.
Your friends or family and their marriages are falling apart. Cry with them, give them counsel, but pray that they come to know Christ. You know, your friends had to have a child that has graduated high school with honors, celebrate with them.
But if they don't know Jesus, what's that going to amount to when Jesus comes back?
The highest highs and the lowest lows in this life mean nothing unless you have Christ. Because you're going to blink and your time on this earth is done and then eternity awaits. So faith in Jesus is nontransferable, final take away your final fill in the oil in this parable is very expensive. The oil in this parable is very expensive. How expensive is it? What kind of price was paid for us to be able to have access to this oil? That is Christ.
That is the spirit of Christ, the Holy Spirit in US. Well, Jesus had to give his life.
Like his whole entire life, 33 years, he resisted temptation to the point of shedding his blood, perfect righteousness in a totally wicked and unrighteous world, he lived his life and then he died on a cross, shed his blood.
And as he hung there, he took all of our wickedness, all of our sin, all of our transgressions, everything that would have kept us out of the kingdom. He took it upon himself and the father crushed him in our place.
He was buried and he rose, conquering sin, Satan and death once and for all. Put it there's no there's no price tag on that millions, trillions quadrillions I can't make up and must illions. It doesn't matter how many you have, you can't pay for that. Literally priceless. And that's the price that Jesus paid in order to make himself available. Does he think he wants see in the kingdom to go to all that length to make a way for you in French?
He wants me in. He wants me in. Jesus paid a price. But we have to pay a price, too. We have to pay a price to get Jesus. Listen to Verse 8 nine again. But the wise answered same since there will not be enough for us oil and for you.
Go rather to the dealers and buy for yourselves.
If you want Jesus, you need to pay to get Jesus. Now stop.
Before you pick up your proverbial stones to throw them at me for potential blasphemy, because I should, I should arouse you if you ever hear someone says you have to pay to get Jesus, that's those those phony televangelist preachers trying to get your money to get you give you Jesus is false, is false.
But listen, there's a price and you've got to pay. But listen to Isaiah. Chapter fifty five, one to seven. Come, everyone who thirsts come to the waters and he who has no money come by and eat, come by wine and milk without money and without price.
Why do you spend your money for that, which is not bread in your labor for that which is not does not satisfy. Listen diligently to me and eat what's good and delight yourselves in rich food, including your ear, and come to me, hear that your soul may live. And I will make with you an everlasting covenant. My steadfast sure love for David. Behold, I made him a witness to the people's a leader and commander for the peoples.
Behold, you shall call a nation that you that do not know and a nation that did not know. You shall run to you because of the Lord, your God and the Holy one of Israel, for he has glorified you. Verse six. Seek the Lord while he may be found, call upon him while he is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the unrighteous man his thoughts. Let him return to the Lord that he may have compassion on him and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon in this incredible text there's an invitation to come to purchase.
But hey, don't worry. If you pull out your pockets and it's mothballs, don't worry. You have no money, no more if you're dead broke, nor if you're bankrupt in debt. Doesn't matter. I made this price just right for you. Cost me everything. Jesus says you've got to pay for it. Let me just rub up the sticker price free, free, come and take it. Come and take the satisfaction that your souls are craving for the satisfaction that you're trying to satisfy by all the things in the world.
And it never works. Relationships, money, status, job, promotion, family. Maybe if I get more of this, a little bit of this, maybe if this changes and you keep trying to pour in everything, that's not the oil of the Holy Spirit and like drinking saltwater, it leaves you more thirsty than you ever were before.
It's insatiable, this world, and it will never satisfy.
And Jesus, in the end, we spend all of our lives and all of our money and all of our energy pursuing that morally, spiritually, emotionally bankrupt to get things that don't feel. And Jesus says, I got the only thing that's going to fill you.
You can't afford it. But don't worry, I made it free. Me, I'm going to give you me. Cost him everything is free for us, and it's a gift we received by faith. Now. There's no price to pay for receiving Jesus made that abundantly clear, but there is a cost to following him. There is a cost and the cost I'm about to tell you, in no way purchases Jesus for you, but it is a cost you have to count if you're going to follow him.
What's the cost?
You have to give up your life. You have to give up your life. I'm going to close with this illustration, someone comes to you with a crate of diamonds, big milk crates full of diamonds and wants to give it to you for free.
Lucky day. But in your hands, you're holding a crate of your own. You already have a crate, no diamonds in yours, just full to the brim. Bird droppings. That's your crate. You can't take the free trade of diamonds while your hands are full, so you need to lower your crate of bird droppings so that you can receive the better crate.
And when you do, when you do, because you're going to do it, you don't walk around telling people how you swindled this guy, how you purchased all these diamonds with your bird crap. You're not going to tell them that no one's going to believe you. You can't buy diamonds with bird poop. You can't. And this is the point. This is the application for us, you have to relinquish your life, you have to give it up.
If you're to receive Jesus, he offers to give you himself, but you're holding your life in your hands and you can't have both of the lives.
You can't have your old life, your old sustained life, your own hopeless life, and have the life that Jesus wants to give you. At the same time, you can't have both. So you lay your life down, your hopes, your dreams, your control over your own life, your time, energy, money, plans, everything.
You lay it down and then you take Jesus and. You're not purchasing his gift of eternal life with your life, that would be like thinking you could buy diamonds with bird poop. No, but you have to give up your life in order to have his those are his terms.
And you cannot have the oil any other way. And so in closing, this Hosea concludes the first layer of the masterpiece that Jesus paints for us. And Matthew twenty five over the next two weeks, we're going to see him add a couple more layers, one by one to the picture with each layer adding more detail on top of the last. I pray you're able to come back and join us for those times, but would you bow your head and pray with me now?
Father, thank you for just your your incredible, limitless goodness to us.
Thank you for your perfect word that tells us the end from the beginning tells us there was a kingdom prepared before the foundation of the world and it's going to be populated by people, countless from all tribes, nations, tongues and languages will be around the throne worshipping and singing holy, holy, holy, forever and ever and ever.
And there's going to be a shred of boredom. It's only going to be pleasure and ecstasy forever, ever more as we're in the presence of our king Lord. And we long we're hardwired to want this from you and you give it to us.
You put the deposit in our lives now of the Holy Spirit as a seal guaranteeing that day. And in it we have hope and we longed for that day. But Lord, we do. We long for it. So thank you that it's coming. Keep us till that time and until then, Lord, for those of us who know you already let us not be satisfied with coming to the feast for ourselves. Let us be driven with compassion to want to bring other people to the feast with us.
You have a large spread, lots of seats. More than enough. Anyone can come use your church Lord, until the day that you call us home. Use us to preach the Gospel so that people might come into the kingdom for your ultimate glory, Lord, and our deepest joy and satisfaction. We pray all of these things in your name. Amen.