The story of Esther in the bible is one of the most poignant sagas of all time. The Jews lived in exile because of their disobedience toward God. Persia had been assigned by God to chastise His people. In the midst of this saga we’re introduced to some key players: Esther, Mordecai, Haman and King Ahasuerus. Because Haman thinks more of himself than the furtherance of the Persian kingdom or the Hebrew slaves, he sets himself up for disaster. The king had promoted Haman and set his throne above all the officials who were with him. (Esther 3:1). Because Haman was promoted he felt little respect for his subordinates. One of the Jewish slaves, Mordecai had sworn that he would not bow to anyone but the Lord. Because of his resistance, Haman became incensed. He despised Mordecai so much that he set in order a plan to annihilate ALL the Jews! Little did Haman know that Mordecai was kin to one of Queen Vashti’s successors! Enter Esther: beautiful, smart, loyal and niece of Mordecai. Mordecai had been called to raise her after her father and mother had died. Once Mordecai learns of Haman’s plot to kill all the Jews, he summons his niece/daughter to help the Hebrew cause. Listen to his words in Esther 4: 13, “Do not think to yourself that in the king’s palace you will escape any more than all the other Jews. For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” We know how the story ends, don’t we? Esther does as her uncle instructed her and Haman ends up hanging on the gallows he had built for Mordecai. But the best part is when Esther wins the king’s favor and reverses the edict which Haman had instituted to kill all the Jews. Notice the reaction of the Jews when the learn that that a decree had been signed by the king to spare the Hebrew people. Chapter 8: 16, “The Jews had light and gladness and joy and honor. And in every province and in every city, wherever the king’s command and his edict reached, there was gladness and joy among the Jews, a feast and a holiday.” Light, gladness, joy and honor. Can you picture it?? And yet, this was only temporary freedom. What is our reaction to our God knowing that we enjoy ETERNAL freedom through Christ Jesus? Jesus truly paid it all. All to HIM we owe. Sin had left a crimson stain. He washed it white as snow.
Have a blessed day and remember the One who gave it to you! Kevin
Kevin Lough is the minister at the Whitehall Church of Christ in Fairmont WV.