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Esther 9 and 10

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ch. 9:1-17  ch. 9:18-31   ch. 10:1-4

Triumph Of The Jews (ch. 9:1 - 17)        


Note in verse 1 the 13th day of the twelfth month of Adar.  Adar is roughly part of our February and part of our March.


In the first five verses of chapter 9 we note that the day had come when the original edict of the king would take effect, and all those who hated Israelis attacked them.  A number of people however didn't attack them because they were afraid, mainly because of Mordecai being the second in command in all of the empire. Note the term "the fear of Mordecai".  Part of the Mosaic Covenant stated that if Israel would obey the Lord, then they would be the head and not the tail.  This is one of those few places in Israeli history that is actually happened, because this is one of the few times in Israeli history when Israel actually obeyed their Lord.  Verses 5 through 10 actually states the success of the Jews in battling their enemy 


The text says nothing about Yahweh helping the Jews conquer their enemies, but it is implied, especially sensed we saw the Jews fasting, and even though the text doesn't say it, I believe they prayed as well, as  in chapter 4, verse 15.  This truly was the hand of the Lord.  God was working behind the scenes, which only makes sense, because what was really happening behind the scene is that satan was attempting to destroy the Jews.  He is still doing the same today.


From verses 11 through 15 we note that Queen Esther had yet one more request of Xerxes, and that was to extend the edict one more day so the Jews could kill all ten sons of Haman and, as the NIV states, hang them for all to see.  As I've been saying throughout this commentary, hanging from the gallows in the book of Esther isn't being hung by the neck as we understand hanging today.  What was really done was the ten sons of Haman were impaled, stabbed and stuck at the end of a long pole that was hoisted into the air for all to see as a warning for those who might think they would oppose the Jews.


Verse 16 simply states that throughout the empire the Jews killed their enemies, yet as was the case throughout the empire, they did not take any spoil from them.  The next day was a day of feasting, and is still celebrated to this day among many Jews in what is called "the Feast of Purim". 


Purim Celebrated (ch. 9:18 - 32)


Verse 17 told us that the Jews throughout the empire rested and celebrated on the 14th day and here in verse 18 we see that the Jews in Susa , the capital city, celebrated on the 15th day.  The reason for this was seen in the last section.  The Jews in Susa were busy on the 14th of Adar killing the ten sons of Haman. So, in verse 19 we note that rural Jews celebrate the Feast of Purim one day earlier than those in the city.


In verses 20 to 22 we note that Mordecai sent out an official document throughout the empire that the Jews would celebrate both the 14th and the 15th days of Adar every year as a time to remember their deliverance from the hands of their enemies.  It would be a time of celebration, gift giving, and helping the poor.  It's important to note that this particular feast of the Jews has nothing to do with the Law of Moses.  It is not one of the seven religious feasts that Yahweh requires Jews to keep.  This is a civil holiday and has been celebrated differently at different times throughout Israeli history.


Because the text here says that Mordecai documented all of this into the government records, many scholars suggest that it is Mordecai who actually wrote the book of Esther, but again, we can't say that for sure.  We just don't know.


As seen in the rest of this chapter, we note that a second letter was sent out to the Jews to announce this new feast, now called "the Feast of Purim", was to be celebrated each and ever year of Jewish existence. 


The chapter closes with both Mordecai and Esther, the queen, signing on to this letter of intent, that stated that all Jews must celebrate the Purim on the 14th and 15th day of Adar.  From chapter 9 we note that the Feast of Purim that is still celebrated today finds its origins in the political arena of  Persia .  Yes, it was instituted by Jews, but was declared in the Persian judicial system.  This is why I say that the Feast of Purim is more of a civil celebration than a religious one, although it definitely is a time of thanksgiving to Yahweh.


The Greatness Of Mordecai (ch. 10:1 - 4)


These 4 verses that make up chapter 10 are simply a testimony to the Law of Moses and the faithfulness of God, even though the word "God" does not appear in the book of Esther.  I say that because according to the Law of Moses, when Israel sought after their God, as they did here, they would be elevated in society.  They would be the head and not the tail as the Law of Moses stated. (Deuteronomy 28:13)  


On the surface, the battle in the book of Esther is between Haman and the Jews.  In a more general since, because I'm sure more than Haman hated the Jews, the battle was between paganism and Judaism.  That being said, there's more to this battle than that.  The real battle is what is raging behind the scene.  The real battle is between God and satan.  The battle ground is Israel.  Satan wants to destroy Israel because they are God's people and from the Israeli race will come the long awaited Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ.  Satan probably gloated in pride when Xerxes made the proclamation to kill the Jews, but like Haman, his bubble probably burst when Xerxes made the second decree and when Haman was executed.  The battle goes on to this very day and will go on until that which is predicted at the end of the book of Revelation comes about.                  




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