The Wise and Foolish Virgins: Who Are They?

The Wise and Foolish Virgins are now waiting for the announcement of the Bridegroom. But this is a Warning! Most are not yet ready! So we must ask, “Who are the Wise virgins, and who are the Foolish – so that we might learn, and become prepared?”

Many today have heard from their Leaders that “Believers” are the Wise Virgins, and that “Unbelievers” are the foolish. Others have been told by their Pastors that the Foolish Virgins are those who lack the oil of the Holy Spirit.

But what do the Scriptures reveal? How can we recognize them today? Are you among the wise, or the foolish? Let’s Look closely at the Scriptures, and let’s find out.

1 Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom.
2 And five of them were wise, and five were foolish.
3 They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them:
4 But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.
5 While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept.
6 And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.
7 Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps.
8 And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out.
9 But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves.
10 And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut.
11 Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us.
12 But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not.
13 Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh. (Mat 25:1-13)

Looking at verse 1, we notice the following:

“Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins…” (Matthew 25:1a)

We must ask, “What is the ‘then’ referring to?” Let’s look at the previous paragraph to find out when:

The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of, And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. (Matthew 24:50-51)

The above passages refer to the coming of the lord of a servant, in a day in which he is not looking, nor is he aware of the hour of his lord’s coming. The consequence for this servant is a “cutting asunder.” It is this time frame in which right afterwards is the coming of the bridegroom. The Greek word for this phrase “cutting asunder” is ‘dichotomeo,’ Strong’s number , meaning “dividing into two parts.” So we are told there is going to be a division, or separation, right at the time when the virgins are to “go forth to meet the bridegroom.” Let us resume now in Chapter 25.

In Mat 25:1, we see that both the wise and foolish virgins went forth to meet the Bridegroom. All ten had lamps. Notice also in verse 3 that the foolish took no oil with them. What is the significance here? First, let’s look at the Lamps.

For the commandment is a lamp; and the law (“Torah”) is light; and reproofs of instruction are the way of life: (Proverbs 6:23)

We see from Proverbs that one’s lamp speaks of the Commandments, and that the Law (“Torah”) is the light given off from the lamp. This is an important clue as to what our lamp and light should be. Yahshua is our living example of the Torah being lived out in daily life. Thus it is that Yahshua said, “I am the Light of the world” (John 8:12, 9:5).

Not only this, but Yahshua said of His disciples, “Ye are the light of the world” (Mat 5:14). Was this a contradiction – or did Yahshua reveal to us the clue to a great mystery? The mystery of “Messiah-in-you” that the Apostle spoke of in (Col 1:27) was more than just an idle description. It was a revelation given to the Bride-Candidates – showing us what is our only hope of “entering in” to glory. It was a revelation given to the Bride-Candidates, showing us that allowing “Messiah-in-you” to keep the Torah, is our only hope of entering in to glory.

Our only hope of entering into glory – is for us to allow “Christ in you” to become the Light, as we allow “Him-in-Us” to obey our Father’s Commandments. Unless we allow “Messiah-in-you” to live, and keep His own Commandments in us, we have no hope of entering in.

All the virgins had the lamp, the Commandments written in their Bibles. But only the wise had the light that comes from walking in the Commandments. So the five wise and the five foolish virgins were all “Bride Candidates” by their own estimation. They all had the Lamp of the commandments. But only the wise virgins allowed Messiah-in-them to provide the Light of living out the Torah in their daily lives.

Perhaps the foolish virgins were told, “That’s Jewish.” Perhaps they were told, “That’s not for us today” or “We’re not under the Law.” Perhaps they listened to the many voices of the Blind leaders of the Blind telling them, “Nobody can keep the Law,” and so they did not search out the issues in the Scriptures for themselves. They missed out on the importance of the Light — of allowing ‘Messiah-in-you’ to live out the Torah in their daily lives.

So we see now that not all of the virgins were truly Bride Candidates in their actions. The behaviour of the Wise Virgins can be seen further in Revelation, as the (repentant) virgin Daughter of Zion:

These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. (Revelation 14:4)

These virgins were not defiled with women. They had repented of the spiritual harlotry — the idolatry that the other “virgins” engaged in. Instead, they followed the Lamb wherever He took them, even into unfamiliar spiritual territory. They allowed the Lamb to live in them, and to walk in them, in the same obedience that He walked in 2,000 years ago, when He was in His own body. They allowed the Lamb to be their Light on a daily basis.

In Mat 25:3 we see that the wise took oil, but the foolish did not. Many today focus on the oil, and speculate as to what it means. But we are told that Oil is found in the dwelling of the Wise (Prov 21:20). Since wisdom is given by Yahweh, and oil is simply a by-product of wisdom, then we must conclude that the oil is related to His Grace – the Holy-Ghost power provided by “Messiah-in-you” to accomplish His purposes.

So we need not search for the oil – we merely need to seek for wisdom, and the oil will be there when it is needed. As we increase in the wisdom of allowing the Commandments to shine forth as light, then “Messiah-in-us” will be there to provide the Oil for the light. As soon as we make an attempt to walk in His Commandments, Statutes and Judgments (the Light), He will supply the Oil – the Grace He gives us from within, to do His will.

In Mat 25:5, we see that both the wise and foolish slumbered, and slept. In verse 6, the Messenger cried out at Midnight. Then in verse 7 we see both the wise and foolish virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. The lamps of the foolish had gone out – they had no oil. It is implied that the lamps of the wise did not go out, and that they had no lack of oil.

But let us now focus on the major differences between the wise and foolish virgins. Notice in verse 10 that “…they that were ready (the wise) went in with him to the marriage….” Then we see in verses 11-12, “Afterward came also the other virgins (the foolish), saying, ‘Lord, Lord, open to us.’ But he answered and said, ‘Verily I say unto you, I know you not’.”

They that were “Ready” – the wise virgins – went in with him to the marriage. The reason they went in, we are told, is that they were ‘Ready.’ But what does it mean to be Ready?

Let’s examine this first by looking at those that were NOT ready. These were the foolish virgins. The first thing we notice is that these “other” virgins uttered the phrase, “Lord, Lord.” This phrase “Lord, Lord” is spoken five times in the New Testament, in context of disobedience, and being refused entrance in to the Kingdom. So here we have another clue – that this is a very serious issue, perhaps related to the breaking of Yahweh’s Covenant – His “Marriage Agreement.”

Notice the phrase, “Lord, Lord” as seen in Matthew 7:21 and again in verse 22, further identifies the Foolish Virgins:

Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. (Matthew 7:21-23)

The Lord’s response, seen in Mat 7:23 above, is very similar to what was said to the foolish virgins, but with one additional clue: “And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work ‘iniquity’.”

The Greek word for ‘iniquity’ is anomia, Strong’s number , meaning “transgression of the law; contempt or violation of law; condition of being without law; wickedness.” It is this additional clue that shows us one point of separation between the wise, and the foolish. But let’s look further.

Looking at the Bridegroom’s response in Mat 25:12, we see that the Bridegroom answered, “I know you not.” What does this tell us? The word ‘know’ in the Greek is ‘eido’ – Strong’s # , meaning “to perceive with the eyes, pay attention, observe, inspect, examine, experience any state or condition, to see, i.e. have an interview with, visit, have regard for one, cherish, pay attention to, see with the mind’s eye; signifies a clear and purely mental perception.”

So the Wise Virgins must have been “known” by the Bridegroom. He had regard for them. But not so with the other group. They were not known by the Bridegroom. They were said to be workers of ‘anomia’ – they were “without Law” – they were not “do-ers” of the Law. And they were considered “foolish.” This result is in agreement with what we concluded above, as we looked at the Lamp and the Light.

What about the Oil? Most discussions of this parable seem to center around the oil for the lamps. But that is because most today have not an inkling of the Truth that walking in Wisdom is simply walking in obedience to Torah. Most Pastors and teachers today have removed the Torah (the Law) from the New Covenant teaching, and so they grasp at anything to focus on, except the real issues.

Yahweh, on the other hand, is establishing the New Covenant among His people, by writing the Torah (Law) on their inward parts, and writing it in their hearts (Jer 31:33; Heb 8:10). Yahweh is likewise ‘sealing’ His Torah among His Disciples, so that they may ‘know’ Him, and so He may know who they are by the “seal” (Isa 8:16; So 8:6; Ex 31:13,16; Eze 20:12, 20). So again – in these passages – we see many links between wisdom and knowing the Father. We are told that the ‘wise’ man is a man of ‘knowledge’ – that is, knowledge of the Father (Prov 24:5).

The passages in Ex 31:13 and Ezekiel 20 reveal exactly what determines ‘knowing’ (“I know you not” or “I never knew you”) . Likewise, the companion passage in Ex 31:16 reveals that this is a “New Covenant” issue, concerning the eternal agreement between the Bridegroom and the Bride. The refusal of the Bride-Candidates to keep this Agreement is seen in Scripture as ‘lawlessness,’ the anomia seen among those claiming the New Covenant – (“you that work iniquity”).

The Psalms and Proverbs both have much to say about those who would be wise, and those who are foolish. Notice the frequent relating of ‘wisdom’ with Commandments and Law:

Psalms:

  • The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever. (Psalms 111:10)
  • Thou through thy commandments hast made me wiser than mine enemies: for they are ever with me. (Psalms 119:98 )

Proverbs:

  • The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction. (Proverbs 1:7)
  • My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother: (Proverbs 1:8 )
  • For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding. (Proverbs 2:6)
  • The wise shall inherit glory (Prov 3:35)
  • Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom (Prov 4:7)
  • My son, keep thy father’s commandment, and forsake not the law of thy mother: (Proverbs 6:20)
  • Hear instruction, and be wise, and refuse it not (Prov 8:33)
  • The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding. (Proverbs 9:10)
  • The wise in heart will receive commandments (Proverbs 10:8 )
  • A wise son heareth his father’s instruction (Proverbs 13:1)
  • The law of the wise is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death. (Proverbs 13:14)
  • A wise man feareth, and departeth from evil (Proverbs 14:16)
  • There is Oil in the dwelling of the wise (Prov 21:20)
  • Whoso keepeth the law is a wise son (Proverbs 28:7)
  • Whoso loveth wisdom rejoiceth his father (Prov 29:3)

All these verses hold the promise of being wise in your “latter end” (Prov. 19:20). The “latter end” is that most-waited-for time, that glorious time, when we shall hear the “midnight cry” saying: “Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him” (Matt 25:6).

Gaining wisdom is the key, the secret, to having that precious oil that the five wise virgins had. Having the oil is merely a by-product, a result of being wise, and of being known by the Bridegroom. Being wise, and avoiding being foolish, is the real issue. This is a “New Covenant” [‘Eternal’ or ‘Everlasting’ Covenant] issue.

Yahshua exhorted His Bride, when He said, “…O fools, and slow of heart to believe ALL that the prophets have spoken” (Luke 24:25). Yahshua spoke that as a warning to us. He said that the ‘foolish’ are slow of heart, because they are not “do-ers” of all the Prophets have spoken. What was He referring to? For one thing, He was Referring to the Israelites in the Wilderness, who are another picture of the Foolish Virgins.

The Prophets tell us exactly what prevented the Israelites of that generation from entering in. Let’s look at just a few passages from the Prophets:

Moreover also I gave them my sabbaths, to be a sign between me and them, that they might know that I am the LORD that sanctify them. But the house of Israel rebelled against me in the wilderness: they walked not in my statutes, and they despised my judgments, which if a man do, he shall even live in them; and my sabbaths they greatly polluted: then I said, I would pour out my fury upon them in the wilderness, to consume them. (Ezekiel 20:12-13)

I am the LORD your God; walk in my statutes, and keep my judgments, and do them; And hallow my sabbaths; and they shall be a sign between me and you, that ye may know that I am the LORD your God. (Ezekiel 20:19-20)

Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant (“owlam berith”). (Exodus 31:16)

For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me. But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words? (John 5:46-47)

In the above passage in John 5:46-47, Yahshua clearly tells us that if we are NOT a believer (a “do-er”) of Moses’ words, we can NOT be a believer (a “do-er”) of Yahshua’s words (for Moses’ words ARE Yahshua’s words).It was Messiah who appeared to Abraham, and to all the prophets, gave the commandments, and it was Messiah who gave the commandments to Moses.

So we see that those Born-again Believers who become “do-ers” of Moses’ words, are also being “do-ers” of all that the Prophets have spoken — and are actually being “do-ers” of Messiah’s commandments [‘MY’ commandments]. Let’s recall that Messiah spoke these words:

“If ye love me, keep MY commandments” (John 14:15).

Likewise, being a “do-er” of all that the Prophets have spoken (“My Commandments”), will result in the foolish becoming wise, and becoming a partaker in the Everlasting Covenant.

Many today do not realize that the ‘New Covenant’ is the very same ‘Everlasting Covenant’ spoken of in the Book of Hebrews, and also in the Psalms:

Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. (Hebrews 13:20-21)

“…Which covenant he made with Abraham, and his oath unto Isaac; And confirmed the same unto Jacob for a law, and to Israel for an everlasting covenant: (Psalms 105:9-10)

In the Psalms passage above, we see that transgressing the covenant made with Abraham, is transgressing the very same covenant confirmed unto Jacob for a law, and is also transgressing the Everlasting Covenant ratified in the Blood of Yahshua.

It was disobedience, or “transgression of the law,” that prevented that generation of Israel from entering in to the Promised Land. Likewise, it will be anomia, the same “transgression of the law,” that will prevent the Foolish Virgins from entering in with the Bridegroom. Why is this true? It is because the “Law” (Torah) is part of the Marriage Agreement broken by the Foolish Virgins.

What about the Foolish Virgins? Throughout Scripture, we see two opposing pictures of virgins. First, there is the (repentant) Virgin Daughter of Zion, picturing the Wise Virgins. Second, there is the Virgin Daughter of Babylon, also called the Virgin Daughter of Egypt. This reveals the foolish virgins.

Come down, and sit in the dust, O virgin daughter of Babylon, sit on the ground: there is no throne, O daughter of the Chaldeans: for thou shalt no more be called tender and delicate. (Isaiah 47:1)

Those of the Company of the Virgin Daughter of Babylon were not even aware that they were part of the Babylon Religious system.

They had been taught to shun “The Law” – thus they did not allow the Lamb to live in them fully. By refusing to observe “My Sabbaths,” as Messiah calls them, they refused Him. They prevented “Christ-in-them” from obeying some of His Father’s Commandments, by His Grace.

By refusing to keep the Passover, they refused the Passover Lamb Himself. By refusing the Passover meal, they refused to eat His Flesh and drink His Blood of the New Covenant, thus they did not have His life in them (John 6.53-56; Mark 14:16-24). Instead, they practiced a pagan Passover substitute of their own choosing, calling it the ‘Lord’s Supper.’

The Virgin Daughter of Babylon also observed Christmas and Easter, and practiced myriads of other ancient, pagan religious rites (all wrapped in modern religious packaging, deceiving many). Moreover, they were told by their Pastors, “God doesn’t see your sin – He sees the Blood of Jesus.” But notice what Yahweh says about that:

For thou hast trusted in thy wickedness: thou hast said, None seeth me. Thy wisdom and thy knowledge, it hath perverted thee; and thou hast said in thine heart, I am, and none else beside me. (Isaiah 47:10)

These are the foolish virgins. They stand as a warning to all who would be wise.

Therefore let us begin to allow Messiah-in-us, to walk in the New Covenant, by His Grace — the Holy-Spirit power and ability He gives us from within, to keep His Commandments. Notice these descriptions of the New Covenant :

Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the LORD: But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. (Jeremiah 31:31-33)

And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them. (Ezekiel 36:27)

And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more. (Jeremiah 31:31-34)

Yahweh will forgive our iniquity, and remember our sin no more, when we repent – after we cease our iniquity and sin, and begin to walk in His Commandments, Statutes and Judgments, by His Grace. For those that are inclined to do so, let us that are foolish repent — so that we may become wise.

The Bridegroom will be here soon! Let us make ourselves “Ready!”

Let us decide whether we would be among the “Wise” Virgins- or among the “Foolish.”

Related Content: Testing & Warnings


For further details of the Wilderness Testing of the Believers, and of the Warnings given to the Bride concerning her Testing that must occur before entering in with the Bridegroom, see the following articles:

Entering the Kingdom: The Wilderness Testing of the BelieversAn Overview of the testing

Entering the Kingdom: The Wise Virgins’ ChecklistAn Overview of the testing, and a Scripture Checklist

Entering the Kingdom: The Two Love Tests Further details of Father’s testing of the Believers

The Love of Many Grows Cold – the measuring-stick used to test the Believers

The Doctrine of Balaam: A Warning to the BrideThe Root cause of failing the test

Eating Things Sacrificed to Idols: A Warning to the Bride – a major cause of failing the test

What Your Pastor Never Told You About The 2nd CommandmentWarning – a major cause of failing the test

Removing the Abominations: A Warning to the Bride – a major cause of failing the test

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9 comments on “The Wise and Foolish Virgins: Who Are They?
  1. lbolm says:

    I enjoyed your post and it was well presented.
    If you get the time, come by and look at something that I got in The Spirit a couple of months ago. Some of it lines up with your post and some of it doesn’t, but the jist of it, “Be Ready” is along the same lines. here is the link;
    http://lbolm.wordpress.com/2007/12/19/be-ready-jesus-is-coming/

    Love In Christ Jesus
    Jake

  2. notesfromthewilderness says:

    Jake, Thanks for stopping by.

    Yes, I see from your site that you do encourage others to be “Ready.” You have made some good points in your Blog. It may be good to tell them in a little more detail, “how” they must get Ready, and what are the indicators that they may “not” be Ready.”

    Let’s say you are given 2-week vacation at a big resort, and you have 6 weeks to prepare for the trip. How will you get ready? What will you pack?

    You might pack your swim suit, suntan lotion, sandals, three or four changes of clothes, a raincoat, and perhaps some golf shirts, etc. You would then be “Ready.”

    The time comes, and you board the plane for the 2-week Vacation trip. After a ten-hour flight, the plane finally lands. You disembark, and all of a sudden – you find it is -40 degrees, and everything is covered with snow. You then realize your vacation is 2-weeks at a resort in the Arctic.

    Yes, you thought you were “Ready” – but knowing exactly “how” to get Ready, makes the difference.

    In His service,

    Bro Bill

  3. lbolm says:

    Amen Brother,
    And I hear you about telling them how.
    I never forget to give an altar call when I am speaking, so I guess the same would apply to my post, eh?

    Have a great Resurrection Weekend.

    Here is my latest post on “A Sinner Saved By Grace”

    http://lbolm.wordpress.com/2008/03/21/a-sinner-saved-by-grace-well-which-one-are-you-2/

    Love in Christ Jesus
    Jake

  4. Greg Mills says:

    You have missed a major point. There were two groups of virgins, one group had believed a false rumor that the bridegroom would come early so they only needed a little oil. The other group was not so sure he would come at the beginning of the evening. This represents pre-trib and post-trib doctrine. Pre-trib are foolish virgins expecting the Lord to return at the beginning of the tribulation and the wise virgins are those who are ready in the Holy Spirit to wait until He actually returns.

  5. notesfromthewilderness says:

    Thank you Greg, for the visit. Perhaps I may have missed several points. I am always wanting to hear Scriptural Truth, and to be sharpened, and prepared.

    I do not know where you heard these ideas, but I can not check them against Scripture for being True or not, unless you give me some chapter and verse to go on. Are these your ideas, or did someone else tell you this? These may be true, but I usually refrain from speculations, unless there are 2 or 3 witnesses of Scripture (at least!) to back up the idea.

    There are many speculations today about the Rapture, and timing. I would recommend “The 3-fold Harvest” to get a Scriptural idea of how Scripture reveals how we will be resurrected, and in what order these all fit together. See this at:

    http://www.thewayprepared.com/studies/3-foldharvest.html

    To understand how to test any ideas against Scripture, I recommend you check out “What You Believe: True or False? The Simple Biblical Test.”

    In His Love,

    Brother Bill

  6. Javier Chavez says:

    It is the very truth. Knowledge and wisdom come as we follow TORAH. The more I understand the substance of doing what is right before Yhwh it makes me feel that Yahshua came to fulfill the Law. This was extremely great and well written. Thanks for the lesson.

  7. Janine says:

    Do the foolish virgins go to Hell, or are they the wedding guests or the least in the Kingdom? They are not the bride but are they still going to Heaven?

    • notesfromthewilderness says:

      Thank you Janine, for your visit, and for your questions. I can tell you what I see today, but it may be incorrect. Like the Bereans, you must read the Scriptures for yourself to verify what I (or others) say. It appears that some Born-Again Believers will be among the Bride, and some among the bridesmaids, and the wedding guests. For Born-Again Believers, it is not a matter of “heaven-or-hell” but simply a matter of timing. The First Resurrection is the early part of the Harvest, in which the Bride is taken; then after the time of Jacob’s Trouble (Jacob=’Christians’), the second part of the resurrection-harvest is made.

      Bear in mind that we see through a glass darkly — that is, some of these issues are not clear. If we would be among the Bride-Company, our duty is to prepare, and acknowledge (by our obedience to Torah) that we know Him — that is, that we know Messiah is the WORD who gave the Commandments to Moses; and that we are not workers of iniquity, but keep all the Law (Torah) and the Prophets, just as Yahushua did, and the apostle Paul and the rest of the Disciples did, as they are examples for us (Matthew 7:23; Acts 24:14; 1Pet 2:21; Philippians 3:17). Let’s get ready, and prepare ourselves, and not become distracted by others who are not doing so!
      -Brother Bill

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