Matthew 25:6-8. And at midnight In an hour quite unthought of, and the most alarming. Perhaps the tradition mentioned by Jerome, which asserted that Christ would come to judgment at midnight, might be borrowed from hence; though certainly it is a very absurd one, since that can be the case only under one meridian at a time. There was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh As Christ’s coming to judge the world will be at a time the least expected; so then a great cry will be made, for the apostle assures us, he will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God, 1 Thessalonians 4:16. At this great cry, which will be heard to the ends of the earth, these virgins all awake, and begin to trim their lamps, to examine themselves, and prepare to meet their God: and now the foolish first perceive their folly: they find their lamps extinguished, and they have no oil wherewith to supply them: they find themselves destitute of vital religion, of union with Christ, and the graces of his Spirit, and that they have only a name to live while they are dead. Thus the hypocrite’s hope shall perish. And the foolish said unto the wise Whom before, perhaps, they had despised and derided as needlessly provident; Give us of your oil, for our lamps are gone out They were therefore once lighted and burning. As if they had said, The light that was in us has become darkness, and the warmth of our love and zeal has become cold and dead, and we are utterly unprepared to meet the bridegroom. What a time was this to make such a discovery! whether the time of being overtaken with some unexpected judgment, the time of death, or that of Christ’s second coming be intended. Reader, Unto which of the saints wilt thou turn? Who can help thee at such a season?
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