Topical studies

The midnight hour

(Mat 25:1-6 NIV) “At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. {2} Five of them were foolish and five were wise. {3} The foolish ones took their lamps but did not take any oil with them. {4} The wise, however, took oil in jars along with their lamps. {5} The bridegroom was a long time in coming, and they all became drowsy and fell asleep. {6} ” At midnight the cry rang out: ‘Here’s the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!’

Mankind has come to associate the hour of midnight with many superstitions. Yet this time has a most beautiful theme in the record of Scripture. Consider the record ………….

1. Midnight and Israel.


The first use of the word midnight is found in Exodus in connection with the deliverance of Israel from the bondage of Egypt. Godís judgement fell upon Egypt.

(Exo 11:4 NIV) So Moses said, “This is what the LORD says: ‘About midnight I will go throughout Egypt.

(Exo 12:29 NIV) At midnight the LORD struck down all the firstborn in Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh, who sat on the throne, to the firstborn of the prisoner, who was in the dungeon, and the firstborn of all the livestock as well.


a. Godís people were in bondage to the Egyptians

b. Godís people had to prepare before the death came

(Exo 12:1-6 NIV) The LORD said to Moses and Aaron in Egypt, {2} “This month is to be for you the first month, the first month of your year. {3} Tell the whole community of Israel that on the tenth day of this month each man is to take a lamb for his family, one for each household. {4} If any household is too small for a whole lamb, they must share one with their nearest neighbour, having taken into account the number of people there are. You are to determine the amount of lamb needed in accordance with what each person will eat. {5} The animals you choose must be year-old males without defect, and you may take them from the sheep or the goats. {6} Take care of them until the fourteenth day of the month, when all the people of the community of Israel must slaughter them at twilight.

c. They had to shelter behind the blood-stained door.

(Exo 12:7 NIV) Then they are to take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of the houses where they eat the lambs.

d. They had to eat ALL the lamb.

(Exo 12:8-10 NIV) That same night they are to eat the meat roasted over the fire, along with bitter herbs, and bread made without yeast. {9} Do not eat the meat raw or cooked in water, but roast it over the fire–head, legs and inner parts. {10} Do not leave any of it till morning; if some is left till morning, you must burn it.

e. All leaven was put away

(Exo 12:15 NIV) For seven days you are to eat bread made without yeast. On the first day remove the yeast from your houses, for whoever eats anything with yeast in it from the first day through the seventh must be cut off from Israel.

f. They ate in preparation for a journey

(Exo 12:11 NIV) This is how you are to eat it: with your cloak tucked into your belt, your sandals on your feet and your staff in your hand. Eat it in haste; it is the Lord’s Passover.

Because of their obedience to the Lordís command through Moses no harm came to them and they kept in good health and strength.

2. Midnight & Samson.


(Judg 16:3 KJV) And Samson lay till midnight, and arose at midnight , and took the doors of the gate of the city, and the two posts, and went away with them, bar and all, and put them upon his shoulders, and carried them up to the top of an hill that is before Hebron.


a. Samson was surrounded by his enemies

(Judg 16:2 KJV) And it was told the Gazites, saying, Samson is come hither. And they compassed him in, and laid wait for him all night in the gate of the city, and were quiet all the night, saying, In the morning, when it is day, we shall kill him.

b. He arose at midnight and possessed the gates of the enemy.

c. The promise of Jesus to the ecclesia.

(Mat 16:18 KJV) And I say also to you, That you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my ecclesia; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it .

d. A promise to Abraham concerned possessing the gates

(Gen 22:17 NIV) I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities (gates)of their enemies,

The story makes an exciting shadow picture of the ecclesia encompassed about by the enemy but arising at the midnight hour to possess the gates.

3. Midnight & Boaz


(Ruth 3:8 KJV) And it came to pass at midnight , that the man was afraid, (startled) and turned himself: and, behold, a woman lay at his feet.

a. This was the season of the threshing of the harvest.

(Ruth 3:2 KJV) And now is not Boaz of our kindred, with whose maidens thou wast? Behold, he winnoweth barley to night in the threshingfloor.


b. Ruth prepared herself.

(Ruth 3:3 KJV) Wash thy self therefore, and anoint thee, and put thy raiment upon thee, and get thee down to the floor:but make not thyself known unto the man, until he shall have done eating and drinking.


c. Ruth came to a place of shelter under the covering of the kinsman-redeemer.

(Ruth 3:8-9 NIV) In the middle of the night something startled the man, and he turned and discovered a woman lying at his feet. {9} “Who are you?” he asked. “I am your servant Ruth,” she said. “Spread the corner of your garment over me, since you are a kinsman-redeemer.”

d. She receives a generous measure of the barley harvest.


e. Ruth becomes the bride of the kinsman-redeemer

David was the great grandson of Boaz and Ruth and through David the line to Jesus.

4. Midnight and Solomon.


(1 Ki 3:16-27 NRSV) Later, two women who were prostitutes came to the king and stood before him. {17} The one woman said, “Please, my lord, this woman and I live in the same house; and I gave birth while she was in the house. {18} Then on the third day after I gave birth, this woman also gave birth. We were together; there was no one else with us in the house, only the two of us were in the house. {19} Then this woman’s son died in the night, because she lay on him. {20} She got up in the middle of the night and took my son from beside me while your servant slept. She laid him at her breast, and laid her dead son at my breast. {21} When I rose in the morning to nurse my son, I saw that he was dead; but when I looked at him closely in the morning, clearly it was not the son I had borne.” {22} But the other woman said, “No, the living son is mine, and the dead son is yours.” The first said, “No, the dead son is yours, and the living son is mine.” So they argued before the king. {23} Then the king said, “The one says, ‘This is my son that is alive, and your son is dead’; while the other says, ‘Not so! Your son is dead, and my son is the living one.'” {24} So the king said, “Bring me a sword,” and they brought a sword before the king. {25} The king said, “Divide the living boy in two; then give half to the one, and half to the other.” {26} But the woman whose son was alive said to the king–because compassion for her son burned within her–” Please, my lord, give her the living boy; certainly do not kill him!” The other said, “It shall be neither mine nor yours; divide it.” {27} Then the king responded: “Give the first woman the living boy; do not kill him. She is his mother.”

One woman seeks to deceive the other in the middle of the night (midnight?) The time of midnight on the earthly stage will be a time blessing and of great deception also

5. Midnight in the Parables.


(Luke 11:5-8 NIV) Then he said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and he goes to him at midnight and says, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread, {6} because a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have nothing to set before him.’ {7} “Then the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children are with me in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ {8} I tell you, though he will not get up and give him the bread because he is his friend, yet because of the man’s boldness he will get up and give him as much as he needs.


a. A great searching after bread at midnight

b. The need for three loaves.

c. The need to persist and seek for the threefold blessing.

6. Midnight & Paul


(Acts 16:25-26 NIV) About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. {26} Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everybody’s chains came loose.


a. Paul & Silas were in bondage

b. They were singing and praising God.

c. All the other prisoners were listening to them.

d. At midnight came deliverance……an earthquake.

e. The bonds of ALL were loosed.

f. The jailer and all his house were converted.

7. Midnight and the Ecclesia


(Mat 25:1-13 NRSV) “Then the kingdom of heaven will be like this. Ten bridesmaids took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. {2} Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. {3} When the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them; {4} but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps. {5} As the bridegroom was delayed, all of them became drowsy and slept. {6} But at midnight there was a shout , ‘Look! Here is the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’ {7} Then all those bridesmaids got up and trimmed their lamps. {8} The foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ {9} But the wise replied, ‘No! there will not be enough for you and for us; you had better go to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.’ {10} And while they went to buy it, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went with him into the wedding banquet; and the door was shut. {11} Later the other bridesmaids came also, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open to us.’ {12} But he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I do not know you.’ {13} Keep awake therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour.


a. Ten virgins point to the whole ecclesia.

    1. Its condition. .five were wise and five foolish. (n.b. five is significant of grace)
    2. The deciding factor . a double portion of oil.
    3. All were drowsy and slept.
    4. The great shout at midnight
    5. ALL awake
    6. ALL trim their lamps to give light
    7. The unwise light dies
    8. They plead for a share but alas there is only enough for the wise.
    9. The bridegroom comes and THEY THAT ARE READY go in to the wedding.
    10. The foolish are shut out from this experience.

8 The midnight Stories as Types and Shadows.


The Ecclesia. The World.

i. Deliverance i. The judgement of God

ii.. Healing ii. The Great Plagues

iii.. Possessing the gates of the enemy iii The great deception.

iv.. The revelation of the bridegroom. iv Famine

v. All bonds are broken. V Bondage

vi. The marriage feast.

vi.. Preservation.

9. A Preparation is Needed.


The blessings that came at midnight required a preparation.

      1. Hiding behind the bloodstained door.
      2. All leaven was to be put away
      3. Washed and clothed (sanctification)
      4. Filled with the Spirit. (the oil)
      5. A double portion of oil.
      6. Intercession.(Paul & Silas prayed )

A song of praise.