In the book of Esther, we can clearly see God at work in an individual’s life and a nation. Although we may not understand why evil is allowed to reign for a time, God is still in control.
The Book of Esther ends with a picture of peace and tranquility, with the Jewish people living in harmony with the Gentile people. God used one woman to change a nation!
Verses 5-16 – Haman had decreed that on the 13th day of the 12th month anyone could kill the Jews and take their property. No one, including Mordecai, could reverse the kings decree that he had signed. Mordecai had the king sign a new law giving the Jews the right to fight back. When that day arrived, the Jews only killed those who wanted to kill them and did not take their property. The Jews only wanted to defend themselves.
Verses 11-15 – The king didn’t seem to be too concerned with the slaughter of his subjects. He was more interested in what else Esther wanted from him. Again the scripture emphasizes Esther wanting the 10 sons of Haman hanged, was not revenge. This was the custom and common practice of the Persian period. This act would serve as a deterrent to those who wanted to harm the Jewish people.
Verses 19-22 – Some people tend to have short memories when it comes to God’s faithfulness. Mordecai wrote the events down and encouraged an annual holiday called Purim. Jews still celebrate Purim today. Today we celebrate Christmas and Easter to celebrate the birth, death , burial, and resurrection of Christ Jesus. Don’t let the celebration or exchanging of gifts overlook and crowd the meaning behind these great events.
Verses 1, 2 – All in one day Haman was forced to honor Mordecai, went to a second banquet, and was charged with trying to kill the queen and her people, and was hanged. “Now that’s a bad day!” Mordecai was elevated and honored, but the main issue of reversing the previous decree had to be dealt with. Esther had to address the king again, which she did. The king then extended his gold scepter towards Esther, allowing her to state her request.
Verses 7, 8 – Esther and Mordecai were given the opportunity to write a new decree that would counter but not rescind his original order.
Verse 10 – This order was sealed by the kings royal signet rig that was once worn by Haman, now worn by Mordecai.
Verses 3, 4 – Esther’s request was direct and to the point. She asked for the king to spare her and her people because they had been “sold out!” Esther didn’t directly accuse the king but in a round about way had said exactly what the decree the king had signed had said. Destruction, death, and extermination to the Jews. This was a direct quote from what Haman had crafted.
Verses 6-10 – For the first time in the book of Esther the king had to make a decision without counsel. He was forced to choose between his prime minister and his wife. Suddenly, the tables were turned on Haman. He was terrified. He begged for his life to Esther.
Court documents from Assyrian period state that a man must not come closer than 7 steps to one of the women in the palace. Haman fell on Esther as he was begging for his life and the king walked in. Proverbs 26:27–“Whoever digs a pit will fall into it, and he who rolls a stone will have it roll back on him.” An so Haman was hanged on the very gallows he had built to hang Mordecai.
Verses 1-3 – Perhaps the king couldn’t sleep because he was thinking about what Esther was going to ask him for, the next day. The king decided to review the history of his reign, so his servants read to him about Mordecai’s good deed. This may seem like a coincident, but not when God’s in the picture. The events here and in our lives that come together for our good are not mere coincidence. Because our awesome God knows the end from the beginning, He can and does orchestrate what happens for our good (Romans 8:28).
Verses 7-9 – Haman already had wealth and power, but what he didn’t have is what he wanted most-respect and honor. In chapter 2, verses 21-23, Mordecai had exposed a plot to kill the king thus saving his life. Although this good deed was recorded in the history book, Mordecai had never been rewarded. When it seems our “pay off” is way down the road, don’t fret. God’s timing is always perfect.
Verse 14 – Haman had no time to react or set another plot in motion. When the king’s eunuchs arrived, he was rushed to Esther’s banquet.
Verses 1, 2 – Esther had fasted 3 days. The purpose of the fast was not to get God to do something, but to give her courage and strength for what she was about to do. On the third day, she dressed in her royal clothing and went to the inner court of the king’s palace where he could see her from his throne.
Verse 9 – Haman’s arrogance rises to new levels after the first banquet. But here lies the problem; even though Haman was floating with false honor and happiness over being asked to Esther’s banquet, a root of bitterness and hatred for Mordecai ruled his heart. Haman’s rage only got worse when he saw that Mordecai not only didn’t rise to honor him but didn’t even tremble! Defying Haman did not even make Mordecai nervous. Hatred for another will always backfire against you. Hebrews 12:15 says that the root of bitterness will defile many.
Verse 14 – Haman’s friends and family were as arrogant as he was. His wife and friends suggested they build the gallows 75 feet high to make sure everyone could see Mordecai hang. Haman had the gallows immediately built.
Verses 1-3 – The term “to cry out,” was often used in the Old Testament to describe a heartbroken howl over injustice (Genesis 18:20), personal tragedy (2 Samuel 13:19), or national tragedy (Ezekiel 9:8). While Mordecai would not get the kings attention, he did get Esther’s, which was crucial for the Jews to survive. Mordecai was not alone in his grief. The Jewish people, in every providence wept and lamented and many lay on sackcloth and ashes.
Verses 8, 9 – The courier was told to explain the decree. Either Esther was illiterate and the decree had to be read to her or it was written in Persian and had to be translated into Aramaic.
Verses 10, 11 – Esther’s first response was to let Mordecai know that she could be put to death if she approached the king without being summoned. Then she said to tell him that she hadn’t seen the king in a month and it would be too dangerous to go, again without being summoned.
Verse 13 – Although Esther was the queen and shared some of the king’s power and wealth, she still needed God’s protection and wisdom. Deliverance only comes from God.
Verse 14 – Mordecai and Esther could have decided to save only themselves. Instead, they saw that God had placed them in their positions for such a time as this. Yes, God can and does deliver us miraculously at times, but in dire situations, look at the bigger picture. Ask this question: Did God save you and transform your life just for you to live in your own little world, or did He purpose you to help others? The Bible stresses over and over, “Love for one anther.” No man is an Island! We can’t ever think that we are the only ones that God can or will use in any given situation. Many are called, but few are chosen. Why? Because not everyone is willing to answer that calling. He will accomplish His purpose either through you or another.
Verse 16 – When it comes to doing what is right, do we remain silent to save our own necks, or do we trust God for the outcome? Anything that is God ordained, will have blessings and victory bigger than anything we could ever imagine.