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Matthew 25

25
The Story of Ten Bridesmaids
1“This is what the kingdom of heaven will be like at that time. Ten bridesmaids took their lamps and went outside the bride’s house to wait for the groom to come and get her. 2Five of the bridesmaids were foolish and five were wise. 3The foolish ones took their lamps, but they didn’t take any olive oil with them. 4The wise ones brought oil in jars along with their lamps. 5The groom was expected that evening, but when he didn’t come for a long time, all the bridesmaids grew tired and fell asleep.
6“At midnight someone cried out, ‘The groom is coming! Go out and meet him!’
7“Then all the bridesmaids woke up and got their lamps ready. 8The foolish ones said to the wise ones, ‘Give us some of your oil, because our lamps are going out.’
9“ ‘No,’ they answered, ‘because there might not be enough for all of us. Go to those who sell oil and buy some for yourselves.’
10“So they went off to buy oil, and while they were away, the groom arrived. The bridesmaids who were ready went in with him to the wedding dinner. Then the door was shut.
11“When the other bridesmaids got back, they called out, ‘Master! Master! Open the door for us!’
12“But the groom replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I don’t know you.’
13“So keep watch. You don’t know the day or the hour when the groom will arrive.
The Story of Three Slaves
14“Again, here is what the kingdom of heaven will be like. A man was going on a journey. He sent for his slaves and put them in charge of his money. The man gave each slave an amount of money he knew the slave could manage. 15He gave five bags of gold to one, two bags to another, and one bag to a third. Then he left on his journey. 16The slave who’d received five bags of gold went at once and put his money to work. He earned five more bags. 17The one with the two bags of gold earned two more. 18But the man who’d received one bag went and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money in it.
19“After a long time, the master of those slaves returned. He wanted to see how the slaves had managed his money. 20The man who’d received five bags of gold brought in the other five. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you trusted me with five bags of gold. See, I’ve earned five more.’
21“His master replied, ‘You’ve done well, good and faithful slave! Because you’ve been faithful with a few things, I’m going to put you in charge of many things. Come, share your master’s happiness!’
22“The man with two bags of gold came next. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you trusted me with two bags of gold. See, I’ve earned two more.’
23“His master replied, ‘You’ve done well, good and faithful slave! Because you’ve been faithful with a few things, I’m going to put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’
24“Then the man who’d received one bag of gold came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘I knew that you were a hard man. You harvest where you haven’t planted, and you gather crops where you haven’t scattered seed. 25So I was afraid, and I went and hid your gold in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.’
26“His master replied, ‘You bad, lazy slave! So you knew that I harvest where I haven’t planted and that I gather crops where I haven’t scattered seed? 27Well then, you should have put my money in the bank, so that when I returned, I would have received it back with interest.’
28“Then his master commanded the other slaves, ‘Take the bag of gold from him and give it to the one who has ten bags. 29Everyone who has will be given more, and they will have more than enough. But as for those who don’t have, even what they do have will be taken away from them. 30Then throw that worthless slave outside into the darkness, where people will weep and grind their teeth.’
The Sheep and the Goats
31“When the Son of Man comes in his glory and all the angels come with him, he will sit on his glorious throne 32and all the nations will be gathered in front of him. He will separate the people into two groups, the way a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33He’ll put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
34“Then the King will speak to those on his right and say, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, take what is yours. Receive the kingdom that has been prepared for you since the world was created. 35When I was hungry, you gave me something to eat, and when I was thirsty, you gave me something to drink. I was a stranger, and you welcomed me; 36I needed clothes, and you gave some to me. I was sick, and you took care of me; I was in prison, and you came to visit me.’
37“Then the people who did what was right will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38When did we welcome you when you were a stranger? When did we see that you needed clothes and give some to you? 39When did we see that you were sick or in prison and come to visit you?’
40“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
41“Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Go away from me, you who are cursed, into the fire that burns forever that has been prepared for the devil and his angels! 42I was hungry, but you didn’t give me anything to eat. I was thirsty, but you didn’t give me anything to drink. 43I was a stranger, but you didn’t welcome me. I needed clothes, but you didn’t give me any. I was sick and in prison, but you didn’t take care of me.’
44“They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty and not help you? When did we see that you were a stranger, or that you needed clothes, or that you were sick or in prison, and not help you?’
45“He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you failed to do for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you failed to do for me.’
46“Then they will go away to be punished forever, but those who did what was right will receive eternal life.”
25
A story about ten girls
Jesus said:
1The kingdom of heaven is like what happened one night when ten girls took their oil lamps and went to a wedding to meet the groom.#25.1 to meet the groom: Some manuscripts add “and the bride”. It was the custom for the groom to go to the home of the bride's parents to get his bride. Young girls and other guests would then go with them to the home of the groom's parents, where the wedding feast would take place.#Lk 12.35. 2Five of the girls were foolish and five were wise. 3The foolish ones took their lamps, but no extra oil. 4The ones who were wise took along extra oil for their lamps.
5The groom was late arriving, and the girls became drowsy and fell asleep. 6Then in the middle of the night someone shouted, “Here's the groom! Come to meet him!”
7When the girls got up and started getting their lamps ready, 8the foolish ones said to the others, “Let us have some of your oil! Our lamps are going out.”
9The girls who were wise answered, “There's not enough oil for all of us! Go and buy some for yourselves.”
10While the foolish girls were on their way to get some oil, the groom arrived. The girls who were ready went into the wedding, and the doors were closed. 11Later the other girls returned and shouted, “Sir, sir! Open the door for us!”#Lk 13.25.
12But the groom replied, “I don't even know you!”
13So, my disciples, always be ready! You don't know the day or the time when all this will happen.
A story about three servants
(Luke 19.11-27)
Jesus continued:
14The kingdom is also like what happened when a man went away and put his three servants in charge of all he owned.#Lk 19.11-27. 15The man knew what each servant could do. So he handed five thousand coins to the first servant, two thousand to the second, and one thousand to the third. Then he left the country.
16As soon as the man had gone, the servant with the five thousand coins used them to earn five thousand more. 17The servant who had two thousand coins did the same with his money and earned two thousand more. 18But the servant with one thousand coins dug a hole and hid his master's money in the ground.
19Some time later the master of those servants returned. He called them in and asked what they had done with his money. 20The servant who had been given five thousand coins brought them in with the five thousand that he had earned. He said, “Sir, you gave me five thousand coins, and I have earned five thousand more.”
21“Wonderful!” his master replied. “You are a good and faithful servant. I left you in charge of only a little, but now I will put you in charge of much more. Come and share in my happiness!”
22Next, the servant who had been given two thousand coins came in and said, “Sir, you gave me two thousand coins, and I have earned two thousand more.”
23“Wonderful!” his master replied. “You are a good and faithful servant. I left you in charge of only a little, but now I will put you in charge of much more. Come and share in my happiness!”
24The servant who had been given one thousand coins then came in and said, “Sir, I know that you are hard to get along with. You harvest what you don't plant and gather crops where you haven't scattered seed. 25I was frightened and went out and hid your money in the ground. Here is every single coin!”
26The master of the servant told him, “You are lazy and good-for-nothing! You know that I harvest what I don't plant and gather crops where I haven't scattered seed. 27You could have at least put my money in the bank, so that I could have earned interest on it.”
28Then the master said, “Now your money will be taken away and given to the servant with ten thousand coins! 29Everyone who has something will be given more, and they will have more than enough. But everything will be taken from those who don't have anything.#Mt 13.12; Mk 4.25; Lk 8.18. 30You are a worthless servant, and you will be thrown out into the dark where people will cry and grit their teeth in pain.”#Mt 8.12; 22.13; Lk 13.28.
The final judgment
Jesus continued:
31When the Son of Man comes in his glory with all his angels, he will sit on his royal throne.#Mt 16.27; Mt 19.28. 32The people of all nations will be brought before him, and he will separate them, as shepherds separate their sheep from their goats.
33He will place the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. 34Then the king will say to those on his right, “My father has blessed you! Come and receive the kingdom that was prepared for you before the world was created. 35When I was hungry, you gave me something to eat, and when I was thirsty, you gave me something to drink. When I was a stranger, you welcomed me, 36and when I was naked, you gave me clothes to wear. When I was sick, you took care of me, and when I was in jail, you visited me.”
37Then the ones who pleased the Lord will ask, “When did we give you something to eat or drink? 38When did we welcome you as a stranger or give you clothes to wear 39or visit you while you were sick or in jail?”
40The king will answer, “Whenever you did it for any of my people, no matter how unimportant they seemed, you did it for me.”
41Then the king will say to those on his left, “Get away from me! You are under God's curse. Go into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels! 42I was hungry, but you did not give me anything to eat, and I was thirsty, but you did not give me anything to drink. 43I was a stranger, but you did not welcome me, and I was naked, but you did not give me any clothes to wear. I was sick and in jail, but you did not take care of me.”
44Then the people will ask, “Lord, when did we fail to help you when you were hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in jail?”
45The king will say to them, “Whenever you failed to help any of my people, no matter how unimportant they seemed, you failed to do it for me.”
46Then Jesus said, “Those people will be punished for ever. But the ones who pleased God will have eternal life.”#Dn 12.2.