Let your loins be girded about, and your lamps burning; and be ye yourselves like unto men looking for their Lord, when he shall return from the marriage feast; that, when he cometh and knocketh, they may straightway open unto him. Blessed are those servants, whom the Lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them sit down to meat, and shall come and serve them. And if he shall come in the second watch, and if in the third, and find them so, blessed are those servants.Luke 12:35-38 ASV
Jesus used the analogy of the marriage feast in several different teachings, the one before us being peculiar to Luke.
ANALOGIES IN THE PARABLE
The Lord Who Went To The Feast = The Lord Jesus Christ.
The Marriage Feast = Jesus’ Ascension To Glory.
The Lord’s Return = Second Advent Of Christ.
Loins Girded, Lamps Burning = Faithful Christian Service.
Second, Third Watches = Indefinite Time Of Second Advent.
The Lord’s Serving Servants = Eternal Joys Of The Saved.
Watchfulness of Servants = Watchfulness Expected Of Christians.
This parable forms a beautiful emphasis upon the warning against unreadiness and was apparently invented by the Saviour for the sermon of this occasion.
If, at the Second Coming, the Lord’s disciples should be found unprepared, their discomfiture would be complete.
There is a definite hint here that the Second Advent will be delayed far beyond the expectations of that generation, and so, it has proved to be.
Significantly, the absence of Jesus during the present dispensation is a time of joy for the Lord, comparable to the festal delights of a wedding.
Furthermore, we need not be troubled by the allegations of some that the disciples had little foundation for the idea at that time, and their refusal for that reason to see the Second Advent in this parable.
In its narrower sense, it refers to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. Indeed, there is hardly anything else to which it could refer.
“Loins girded about” is a reference to the loose, flowing garments, which can be a fatal hindrance to activity.
Therefore, the command to be girded about means that believers should be ready to serve, ready for unhindered action in Christ’s service.
“Second watch, third watch” They are the second and third of the Roman four watches, representing the dead of night, and by metaphor, the unexpectedness of the Second Advent. The Jews reckoned only three night watches.