It was a time of strong drink in the nation-- Esther 1:7-8.
We are slowly becoming a nation of drunkards and alcoholics. Wekeep seeing the danger but doing nothing about it. Proverbs 20:1;
It was a time of immodesty and debauchery-- Esther 1-2a. It was a time when the King demanded Vashti the Queen to come
before the leaders of 127 provinces and display her body before
It is considered possible that
their drunken lustful eyes (1:10-11).
Mordecai was the author of the book ("And
b. The Queen had the moral courage to dare to do right!
Mordecai wrote these things, and sent letters unto all the Jews that
were in all the provinces of the king Ahasuerus, both nigh and far,"Esther 9:20). The Hebrew is similar to that of Ezra and Nehemiah.
It was a time when the sanctify of marriage was at a low ebb.
a. The King was willing to get rid of the Queen for no fault of hers.
The book seems to be especially designed for the
Jews of the dispersion in the various parts of the Persian empire
b. Now one of every two marriages end in divorce. (Mt.19:3-9)
It was a time when human life was cheap.
The events described in the book begin with the third year
a. The leaders were willing to sign a decree to have 2,000,000 Jews
(1:3) of the reign of Ahasuerus and closes with his twelfth year (3:7).
killed, because one of them would not bow and tip his hat to
This was approximately 483-474 BC. Esther became queen in 479
Haman, a wicked scoundrel (Esther 3:9, 13).
b. Life today is cheap. Murders escalating wildly. Theft and hate
escalating. 'Aborting on demand' supported by the news and
The Ahasuerus of the Book of Esther is also known in secular
history as Xerxes, king of Persia (485-465 BC). He is famous for hisexpedition against Greece and how the Greeks defeated his
It was a time that needed the good woman Esther (4:13-16)
tremendous fleet at the battle of Salamis in 480 BC. Historians tells
a. Her silence would have been sin. She found herself in a
us that this was one of the world's most important battles.
responsible position and she had to do what she could.
From parallel passages in the works of Herodotus we find that the
feast described in the first chapter of Esther was the occasion for
good people in leadership in the nations-- in business-- in
planning the campaign against Greece, the third year of his reign.
education-- in communications-- and in the home.
Esther replaced Vashti in the seventh year of his reign (Esther
2:16) when Xerxes returned from his disastrous defeat.
"For such a time as this" what kind of disciples do you think the Lord
needs? Are you one of that kind? Are you one the Lord can count on and
PURPOSE OF THE BOOK:
To show God's providential care for
His people even in the dispersion; also to show the origin of theJewish feast of Purim (3:6-7; 9:26-28).
The providential deliverance of the Jews from destruction
through the agency of Esther and Mordecai. Esther is like Joseph and
David. God had each one hidden away for His purpose. When the
day came, He brought them to the front to work out His plan.
The key verse of the book is Esther 4:14:
"For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then shall
there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from anotherplace; but thou and thy father's house shall be destroyed: and whoknoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time asthis?" (Esther 4:14)
"FOR SUCH A TIME AS THIS"
Note: Although God's name is not mentioned in the book of
Esther, every page is full of God who hides Himself behind
every word. Matthew Henry, the great commentator, says, "If
1. Esther 4:13-16. The background story of the events in Susa.
the name of God is not there, His finger is." It is called "The
Ahasuerus (481 BC) was king of Persia.
b. God's people Israel were in the provinces of Persia.
Romance of Providence." God has a part in all the events of
The King had the leaders of 127 provinces to come to a celebration
that lasted 187 days-- more than six months.
(1 It was a feast of drinking and sin.
OUTLINE OF ESTHER
(2 The King sends for Vashti to come and display her beauty.
ESTHER BECOMES QUEEN OF PERSIA -- Ch. 1-2
d. The King accepts the suggestion to reject her and choose another
Ch. 1 Queen Vashti displeases the king and is dethroned.
Ch. 2 Esther is selected and made queen.
(1 Esther, a young Jewess, is eventually chosen.
II. HAMAN'S PLOT TO KILL THE JEWS IS DEFEATED -- Ch.
2. Her cousin (uncle?) Mordecai had offended Haman a high official in
the King's court. By trickery Haman gets the King to sign a decree that
all the Jews should be put to death.
Ch. 4 Esther promises to intercede for her people
A decree issued by a Persian monarch was unalterable.
Ch. 5 Esther secures the favor of the king and his presence at
b. God stepped in and in a providential way delivered His people
from the decree that Christ might come of their seed as promised
Ch. 6 Mordecai is honored and Haman humbled.
Ch. 7 A second banquet foils Haman's plot and he is hanged.
3. This story is written for our benefit (Romans 15:4) and shows God's
Ch. 8 Mordecai is promoted to Haman's position and the Jews
are authorized by the king to defend themselves against
"FOR SUCH A TIME AS THIS"
Mordecai thought Esther had come to the throne "for such a time as this."
III. THE DELIVERANCE AND THE FEAST OF PURIM -- Ch. 9-
What sort of a time was it?
1. It was a time when the King and the leaders of the nation were selfish,
Ch. 9 The Jews are victorious over their enemies and the Feast
Ch. 10 The greatness of Mordecai during the remainder of
b. "When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when
the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn." (Proverbs 29:2)
What about the "leaders" (?) of today? What kind of a role-model
Note: This is the true story of a little Jewish orphan girl becoming
are the politicians, sports and entertainment figures today?
Queen of Persia. At this time the Persian throne controlled over half
What about the morals and philosophies of those molding and
shaping the minds of our youth? (The media, the educators, etc.)
2. It was a time of worldly pomp and show (Esther 4:13-16 and
Esther was the Queen of the famous Xerxes for thirteen years. No
doubt she lived for many years into the reign of her stepson,
It was a time when the leaders of 127 provinces recklessly took 6
Artaxerxes. Under this king, Nehemiah rebuilt Jerusalem. It was
Esther's marriage to this famous Persian monarch that gave the Jews
b. They neglected the nation, its welfare, and their homes.
enough prestige at this court that made it possible for Nehemiah to
Today our nation is neglecting to preserve the fountains of
rebuild Jerusalem with official help (Nehemiah 2:1-8).
righteousness in our nation: "Prayer" outlawed from schools;"homosexuality" paraded as a civil rights issue instead of sin; themurder of innocent babies legalized!2 Timothy 3:1-5; Ecclesiastes 12:13-14.
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