Matthew 25: They Never Had Any Oil to Start With

Matthew 25: They Never Had Any Oil to Start With

“They never had any oil to begin with.”

This is the only logical conclusion concerning the five foolish virgins among those who believe in the doctrine of “once saved, always saved.” Any time a professed believer falls away, such is always explained, “He never was saved to begin with.”

The only verse where they believe they can drive a stake on this error is 1 John 2:19, which in fact, not only does not support their error, it refutes it! The “they” of verse 19 is the anti-christs of verse 18. These “went out from us.” One cannot go out from a place he has never been. This going out is not a reference to location, but to relationship.  Thus, they were once among the disciples, that is, Christians. Their apostasy became manifest in their refusal to continue in faithful obedience to the gospel.

The literally dozens of warnings to Christians regarding apostasy (1 Tim 4:1-3; 2 Pet 2:20-22; Heb 10:38-39; James 5:19-20, Gal 5:4; etc), not to mention outright examples of actual apostasy (John 17:11-2; Acts 1:15-20; 2 Tim 2:17-18, 4:10, etc), show us that the Baptist and Calvinist teaching on this matter is false.

When I was a youngster, the parable of the ten virgins always bothered me because the five wise virgins didn’t’ “share,” and I was taught that I should always share those in need. But the oil represents readiness to meet the bridegroom and as such puts the once saved, always saved crowd in a conundrum. At the beginning of the parable, all ten virgins are prepared to meet the bridegroom(i.e., saved, Matt 25:1). It is not until verse 5 that half of them are found unprepared (e.g., lost).

So what happened? At some point, they lost their readiness (salvation). They were ready to meet the bridegroom at one point, but unprepared at a later point. The parable couldn’t be any clearer nor could the application.

I guess one might argue that they never really had any oil to start with. Or, we might be better off to conclude the doctrine of once saved, always saved is false and contradicts the clear teaching of Scripture.

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