Esther Reading Plan | Week 10 | Day 2
Take thirty seconds to be silent. Be still and listen to yourself breathing. This will help you to be present to hear from God. Thank God for not holding anything back to rescue you, but sending His only Son to save you. Ask Him to open your eyes more to who He is today.
Bible Reading: Esther 8:15-9:19
Read these verses three times slowly.
When Mordecai left the king’s presence, he was wearing royal garments of blue and white, a large crown of gold and a purple robe of fine linen. And the city of Susa held a joyous celebration. For the Jews it was a time of happiness and joy, gladness and honor. In every province and in every city to which the edict of the king came, there was joy and gladness among the Jews, with feasting and celebrating. And many people of other nationalities became Jews because fear of the Jews had seized them.
On the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, the month of Adar, the edict commanded by the king was to be carried out. On this day the enemies of the Jews had hoped to overpower them, but now the tables were turned and the Jews got the upper hand over those who hated them.The Jews assembled in their cities in all the provinces of King Xerxes to attack those determined to destroy them. No one could stand against them, because the people of all the other nationalities were afraid of them. And all the nobles of the provinces, the satraps, the governors and the king’s administrators helped the Jews, because fear of Mordecai had seized them. Mordecai was prominent in the palace; his reputation spread throughout the provinces, and he became more and more powerful.
The Jews struck down all their enemies with the sword, killing and destroying them, and they did what they pleased to those who hated them. In the citadel of Susa, the Jews killed and destroyed five hundred men. They also killed Parshandatha, Dalphon, Aspatha, Poratha, Adalia, Aridatha, Parmashta, Arisai, Aridai and Vaizatha, the ten sons of Haman son of Hammedatha, the enemy of the Jews. But they did not lay their hands on the plunder.
The number of those killed in the citadel of Susa was reported to the king that same day. The king said to Queen Esther, “The Jews have killed and destroyed five hundred men and the ten sons of Haman in the citadel of Susa. What have they done in the rest of the king’s provinces? Now what is your petition? It will be given you. What is your request? It will also be granted.”
“If it pleases the king,” Esther answered, “give the Jews in Susa permission to carry out this day’s edict tomorrow also, and let Haman’s ten sons be impaled on poles.”
So the king commanded that this be done. An edict was issued in Susa, and they impaled the ten sons of Haman. The Jews in Susa came together on the fourteenth day of the month of Adar, and they put to death in Susa three hundred men, but they did not lay their hands on the plunder.
Meanwhile, the remainder of the Jews who were in the king’s provinces also assembled to protect themselves and get relief from their enemies. They killed seventy-five thousand of them but did not lay their hands on the plunder. This happened on the thirteenth day of the month of Adar, and on the fourteenth they rested and made it a day of feasting and joy.
The Jews in Susa, however, had assembled on the thirteenth and fourteenth, and then on the fifteenth they rested and made it a day of feasting and joy.
That is why rural Jews—those living in villages—observe the fourteenth of the month of Adar as a day of joy and feasting, a day for giving presents to each other.
Reflection & Questions
Yesterday we read of the transformation of Esther. Today, we read of the transformation of Mordecai. Previously he was a forgotten (and faithful) official of the king under Haman’s death sentence because of his refusal to bow down to Haman. In these verses we learn Mordecai is now “prominent in the palace; his reputation spread throughout the provinces, and he became more and more powerful.” And this power he does not use to build his own ego (like Haman), but in the benefit of his people and the full eradication of the dangers that his people face. Mordecai’s leadership led to “joy and gladness among the Jews, with feasting and celebrating.”
It is not hard to see how the character of Mordecai points us to Jesus. He is the true and better Mordecai. Jesus wasn’t just a forgotten official of the king. He left his throne next to the Father in heaven to be made human and “the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him” (John 1:11). He didn’t just live under a death sentence, but he “loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.” (Ephesians 5:2). He didn’t just save us the threat of an earthly enemy, Jesus fully “disarmed the [spiritual] powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross” (Colossians 2: 15). And He didn’t just bring temporary joy like Mordecai did for the Jews, Jesus gave his life that we would have “joy in [His] presence, with eternal pleasures at [His] right hand” (Psalm 16:11). That is the good news! King Jesus is AMAZING and we give him all our allegiance.
- Which part of the comparison of Mordecai and Jesus sticks out to you? Why?
- How can you be like Mordecai and Jesus this week in living your life for the benefits of others?
Pray in response to today’s reading.
You might use this song today to worship Jesus today:
Prepare to Meet with Jesus
Find a quiet place to read and pray. Make sure there are no devices around that will distract you. Pray and ask God to help you concentrate. Ask Him to help you understand what you read.
Bible Reading: Esther 8:3-6
Read these verses three times slowly.
Esther made another appeal to the king. She fell at his feet and wept. She begged him to put an end to the evil plan of Haman, the Agagite. He had decided to kill the Jews. The king reached out his gold scepter toward Esther. She got up and stood in front of him. She said, “King Xerxes, I hope you will think what I’m asking is the right thing to do. I hope you are pleased with me. If you are, and if it pleases you, let an order be written. Let it take the place of the messages Haman wrote. Haman was the son of Hammedatha, the Agagite. He planned to kill the Jews. He wrote orders to destroy us in all your territories. I couldn’t stand by and see the horrible trouble that would fall on my people! I couldn’t stand to see my family destroyed!”
Reflection & Questions
Your family members are important to you, aren’t they? Even your annoying little sister or your older brother who always picks on you. Even though they might not be perfect, you still love them and don’t want anything bad to happen to them, right?
That’s what Esther was feeling when she approached the king once more. The evil man, Haman, was gone, but his order to have the Jews killed was still in place. She had to ask King Xerxes to save her people as well as herself.
Can you imagine the bravery that it took to do that? If your brother or sister needed your help to save them from trouble, what would you do? Would you risk getting hurt to help them?
We have one amazing family member who would do anything to protect us: God our Father. We just have to turn to Him for help and guidance so that He can help us when we are in troublesome situations. He is wonderfully and wise and loves each of us so very much
- Have you ever had to protect one of your family members?
- Have you ever seen one of your family members protect you or stand up for you? How did that make you feel? Be sure to thank those family members in your life who protect you and look out for you.
Thank God for being a loving and caring Father. He wants good things for you, his child. Thank Him for also giving you people in your life who love you and will protect and take care of you. Ask him to help you be brave when you need to stand up for others.
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