The oil of authentic relationship is bought at the cost of investing time and energy in the secret place.
Acquiring oil is actively connecting with God. To have an attentive heart to what the Spirit is speaking to our lives and to be anointed observers of what He is doing involves cultivating faith that agrees with what the Word and the Spirit say about Jesus.
This whole idea of acquiring or purchasing oil comes from the parable of the ten virgins found in Matthew 25:1-13.
Jesus’ delay was longer than expected. ‘Five of them were wise, and five were foolish. Those who were foolish took their lamps and took no oil with them, but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.’ (Matthew 25:2-4) … ‘The foolish said to the wise, “Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.” The wise answered, “No, lest there should not be enough for us and you; but go rather to those who sell, and buy for yourselves.”’ (Matthew 25:8-9)
The picture of the wise ones being prepared by gathering extra oil is a clear symbol for those who sincerely love Jesus with all their hearts and stay filled with His Spirit by virtue of their ongoing, intimate love relationship with Him. Their lamps are always full of oil. And even in the darkest hour of human history, just before Christ returns, the wise ones will shine brightly because they are filled with the Light of the World Himself — Jesus. And that keeps their lamps burning.
Oil in the lamp represents having an inner reservoir of Holy Spirit reality. It doesn’t cost much to get oil for ministry, but it will cost you a lot to get the oil of an intimate relationship with Jesus. The foolish will allow urgent matters of the moment to pull them away from the secret place after having a minimal filling.
The wise will stay and continue to be filled with oil until their hearts are energised by their love relationship with Jesus. I try to devote myself to the secret place until my heart is overflowing with love and fervour for God. I make it the first priority of every day to keep that oil replenished.
The secret is right here. The secret place is the threshold for resourcing the replenishment we need to sustain through the dark night of Christ’s delays.
- We each need a constant supply of oil to keep our lamps burning brightly.
- Oil represents our private life in God that produces a bright light in a dark world.
- Oil can only be purchased as we meet with the Lord in the secret place.
- As we acquire more oil for our lamps, we will develop a passionate love relationship with the Lord that will result in deep intimacy and maturity.
- Each of us must acquire our own supply of oil.
- As Jesus so clearly tells us in this parable, we cannot borrow oil from anyone else—we have to purchase it for ourselves.
- Just like we can’t depend on another’s faith for our salvation, we can’t depend on anyone else for an intimate relationship with Jesus.
- We must go to the “seller” ourselves (Matthew 25:9), and we must go often to keep our oil supplies replenished.
- Acquiring oil will cost us time, money, and even friends.
- Though buying oil is expensive, the small price that we pay cannot even compare to the rewards we will experience at the marriage supper of the Lamb.
- The wise know the expensive cost of oil, but they considered being eternally prepared for Jesus worth any price.
- It is not always easy to buy oil for our lamps. I know what it’s like to live below what the Christian walk could be and yet feel almost powerless to change anything. I’ve watched myself return persistently to sources which are no source.
- For many believers, setting aside time and energy to meet with God on a regular basis is one of the most difficult disciplines of the Christian faith. Despite our good intentions, so many other “good” things distract us from the secret place.
- Jesus commands to us to stay alert, press through the opposition, and remain focused on our relationship with Jesus. We must overcome the oppositions and distractions in order to acquire more oil in the secret place.
- As we do this, we will become wise ones whom the Lord knows intimately, and we will be welcomed into the eternal wedding feast.
The secret place is where we acquire oil. As we come aside to commune with our Lord, we are renewed in the Holy Spirit, and our oil levels are replenished.