Jesus’ prophecy recorded in Matthew chapters 24 and 25 contains eight references to his “coming”; in each case, a form of the same Greek word is used. In every instance, Jesus was referring to the time during the great tribulation when he will come to carry out the judging work and then the destruction of this world system of things. Evidently, then, this parable of the ten virgins applies during the last days, but its climax comes during the great tribulation. (Matt. 25:1-13) What is the parable’s basic message? Remember the context. Jesus had just discussed his “faithful and discreet slave.” (Matt. 24:45-47) That slave would prove to be a small group of anointed men who would take the lead among Christ’s followers during the last days. Jesus warned those men that they must remain faithful. Next, he broadened his focus and gave this parable to admonish all his anointed followers to “keep on the watch” lest they miss out on their precious reward.