I ended up with a flat tire on Monday morning. It was my own fault that the tread had worn to the cords. I was told to replace all my tires in May. A flat in November should have been no surprise. But what a pain!
Compromised commitment is also the concern of Joshua as we approach the end of his ministry. Having brought the people into the Promised Land following Moses' death, and conquered it, Joshua is wondering about the faithfulness of God's people now that the dream is being fulfilled.
Joshua knows that they worship the God of the Exodus, but he's also aware of their worship of other gods of neighboring peoples, like the Amorites. They may think they're covering all the bases when in fact they have divided their loyalty.
Joshua demands a decision from them. While they readily agree to worship the God of the Exodus, Joshua seems unconvinced and lays it all out for them. They reaffirm their complete commitment, but we have good reason to be suspicious along with Joshua.
It's a different factor that shows divided loyalties in Matthew's parable of the ten bridesmaids. Here it is a question of acting on and following through on one's commitment with vigor, imagination, and witness.
Five bridesmaids are wise, while the other five are foolish. Told to meet the bridegroom in the evening, all the bridesmaids bring along their oil lamps. However, the wise ones bring extra oil in a jar; the foolish ones don't.
The hour becomes quite late and the foolish ones are running out of oil. They ask the wise ones to share theirs, but the wise ones refuse and suggest they go to the oil store at 2am.
By the time the foolish ones return, the bridegroom has already arrived, been met by the wise ones, and gone into the wedding banquet. The foolish ones ask for admittance, but they're sent away by the groom becasue he doesn't know who they are.
There seem to be harsh aspects to this story, but a bit of consideration can help you sort it out. So can the sermon video. Ask yourself what may keep your faithful commitment to God from being complete. Renew your commitment to God alone, and check out the whole story in the sermon video below, and in the downloads below the video panel.