Lighthouse Bible Church
Sunday March 29, 2020
The Courage of the Queen
The Providence of God
Book of Esther
The book of Esther is a historical book, a story of redemption of the Israelites from a plot to commit genocide against them by an evil, vindictive prince.
Esther is a great story of courage in the face of great peril and also demonstrative of good vs evil and Satan vs God.
The Book of Esther provides us with great illustrations of the providence of God. Although His name is never mentioned, we see His providence in each page of this wonderful little book.
King Ahasuerus was a king of Persia, Media and Babylonia who reigned during part of or shortly after the 70 year period of exile and captivity in Babylon for the nation of Israel. He is also referred to as Xerxes.
Jer 25:11 'This whole land will be a desolation and a horror, and these nations will serve the king of Babylon seventy years.
When the 70 years was up and the Jews were called to return to the land some did not heed the call and remained in Persia or Babylonia.
Since there is no mention of God we can assume the most Jews of this time are far from His will.
This was a time of prosperity in the land of Persia, Media, and Babylonia and a display of wealth and excess by the king.
This long drunken feast and arrogant display of wealth and power is reminiscent of the fall of man through the arrogance of Adam and Eve in the garden.
Esther pleased Hegai so that he elevated her to a special position in the king’s harem giving her preferential treatment to help her be more pleasing to the king.
Mordecai was being a father to her and knew it would not be good to let anyone know she was a Jew. He also gave her advice and kept an eye out for her welfare as we will see.
What we see here is that there are almost 4 years between Vashti’s refusal to obey the King and the crowning of Esther. So I guess it must have taken a long time to round up all the young maidens for the contest.
Esther had 2 good coaches, Hegai and Mordecai to give her an advantage in the contest for Queen but as we will see the hand of God will be here in everything that happens.
God’s hand seen from placing Mordecai at the Kings gate, letting him hear of a plot against the King, to placing Esther in the position to be selected as Queen and giving her special help of Hegai
This report that Mordecai revealed to Esther and subsequently to the King will play a huge part in this story.
Agagite refers to Haman being a descendant of the Amalekites, who were historical enemies of the Israelites and were many times defeated in battle.
This is recorded throughout the old testament in Gen 14, Num 14, Judges 6, 7,10, and 12 as well as 1 an2 Samuel and 1 Chronicles. This fact surely plays a part in Haman’s anger and hatred of the Jews.
So Haman, now that he is the crown prince, because of his big ego and power trip to glorify himself convinces the king to put a bounty on the Jews. He calls for the extermination of all Jews, men, women and children.
Throughout history there have been plots of genocide against the Jews.
We will see if this plot will be successful or if God will put things and people in place to stop it.
At first Esther balks at going to the King because being against the king’s law it risks immediate death. Mordecai explains that she will not escape and will be found out as a Jew and killed as well.
He also tells her that it is very possible that she has attained the position as royalty for the purpose of saving the Jews from destruction at the hands of the evil Haman.
So will Esther be successful in convincing Ahasuerus to stop Haman’s genocide?
Possible outcomes are:
Esther killed for violating the King’s command.
Esther tells the king of the plot but he spares her and lets Haman proceed anyway.
The King reverses the plot and saves the Jews thanks to Esther’s courage.
Next time we’ll read on to find out what happens with Esther’s elaborate plan to thwart Haman and if the massacre goes forward or is prevented.
Eph 2:8-9 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.
Rom 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
and in John 3:16:"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.