Having No Oil Ranks You Among The Wicked
"The putting out of a lamp is to the Orientals an image of utter desolation." - Matthew Henry
"And perhaps we are to understand that there is something in the coincidence of the lamps going out just as the Bridegroom arrived. Mere outward religion is found to have no illuminating power." - Robertson's Word Pictures
Psalm 18:28 says - "For Thou wilt light my candle: the LORD my God will enlighten my darkness." We see here that it is the Lord Who keeps the candle or lamp burning. He is the sustenance or the oil that keeps it burning brightly.
John the Baptist was called "a burning and a shining light" (John 5:35). Why? Because he stayed full of the Holy Ghost - even from his mother's womb. In Luke 12:35, we are admonished to keep our lights burning brightly or full of oil - the Holy Ghost - in order to be prepared for the Second Coming of Jesus - "Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning." In other words, let the "candle of the Lord" - your spirit - be always found burning brightly. Keep a free spirit - a spirit free from all contamination of sin and worldliness.
In order to keep a free spirit, it's so important that we keep our lamps "trimmed." In Matthew 25, we read about the ten virgins who kept their lamps trimmed. What this means is that they kept them clean of dead ashes that would hinder the light from shining.
But we want to see something here that is rather startling. The five foolish virgins - even though they trimmed their lamps - kept them from all dead materials that would hinder them from burning brightly - failed to keep them full of oil - the substance that keeps them burning brightly in the first place. Matthew 25:3-8 gives the scenario - "They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet Him. Then all the virgins arose, and trimmeth their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out."
The "foolish virgins" were not termed "foolish" because they slumbered and slept for we see that the "wise virgins" did so as well. They were called "foolish" because they "took their lamps, and took no oil with them." They just assumed that what they had at the moment was enough for the long haul. When the "midnight cry" came, they had enough sense to know that they needed to "trim their lamps" of any ashes or dead materials in order to make the light shine brightly. But they failed to realize that even with a clean lamp, no oil in it will cause the fire to go out.
Their doom finally came - "our lamps are gone out." What they were actually saying was that their lamps were going out. Their lamps that once burned brightly were now going out rapidly because their was no supply of oil to keep them burning brightly.
Here we see that it is not enough to keep the life clean. It is so crucial that we keep it full of the Holy Ghost as well.
It's interesting to note that several Scriptures throughout the Bible point out that it is the "candle" or lamp of the wicked that eventually goes out.
- Job 18:5-6 says - "Yea, the light of the wicked shall be put out, and the spark of his fire shall not shine. The light shall be dark in his tabernacle, and his candle shall be put out with him."
- Job 21:17 says - "How oft is the candle of the wicked put out! and how oft cometh their destruction upon them!..."
- Proverbs 13:9 says - "The light of the righteous rejoiceth: but the lamp of the wicked shall be put out."
- Proverbs 20:20 says - "Whoso curseth his father or his mother, his lamp shall be put out in obscure darkness."
- Proverbs 24:20 says - "For there shall be no reward to the evil man; the candle of the wicked shall be put out."
A lamp that is deplete of oil is a lamp that will eventually go out. You can keep the lamp clean, but if you do not keep replenishing the oil, the fire will die out.
What does this have to do with us as believers?
We can see from the example of the "foolish virgins" that it is not enough to keep our spirits free from contamination. They must also be full of the Holy Ghost. There are many today who are uplifted in themselves that they do not partake of the world's "goods" - so to speak. In other words, they keep themselves separated from all worldly activities and pleasures. That is commendable and necessary. However, it is also necessary that they keep themselves full of oil - the Holy Ghost - in order to stay humble and filled with the Love of God so that they do not exalt themselves like the Pharisees and look down on others who may not look like their religious selves.
Jude 21 admonishes us as Christians to - "Keep yourselves in the love of God..." 1 Corinthians 13:1-3 says - "Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing."
Many today carry a clean exterior, but two minutes in their presence shows that their lamps seriously lack the oil of the Holy Ghost. Their witness for the Lord in this lost and dying world is just not there. They have nothing to offer but dead denominationalism. There is no power of the Holy Ghost coming through them to others. They have no fire or passion for Jesus and His Word burning in their hearts. They are simply an "empty shell" - while calling themselves a "Christian." They once were filled with the Word of God, but now they are too busy - being all caught up with doing "church" things. Once Jesus filled their heart and soul, now their church has become their top priority. They live, breathe, and eat their church denomination!
Once they pointed men to Jesus, now they point them to their particular denomination.
The Lord Jesus warned us all in Luke 8:18 which says - "Take heed therefore how ye hear: for whosoever hath, to him shall be given; and whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he seemeth to have." It's so important that we keep ourselves full of God's Word, Spirit, Grace, and Love. We need to have a fresh supply of oil each day to keep our lamps burning brightly in this darkened world. What we once had can be lost through carelessness and negligence.
Never forget - what made the five virgins "foolish" was that they "took their lamps, and took no oil with them."
No oil - no fire!
If you have no fire, the Bible calls you "wicked" for it is "the lamp of the wicked" that is put out.
We can understand why the wicked would have no "oil" in their lamps, but what is your excuse?
Then again, is it because you have joined their ranks and don't even know it?
May God Bless His Word.
© COPYRIGHT Connie Giordano - All Rights Reserved