Thursday, October 3. Esther 6 – 8

Chapter six is a classic tale of comeuppance and it must have delighted the Jews who first read it. You have to wonder though how disconnected Xerxes must have been to have ordered the extermination of an entire race of people and not know what particular race was involved. Remember: Haman called them “a certain people,” not the “Jewish people.”

From Esther’s perspective, the future of the Jewish people, those on whom God had set His affection, were doomed unless she could influence the king to change his mind. Their future – their hope – all rested on her. On the other hand, even if she were successful, how could the Jews be saved? Such a decree, sealed with the king’s ring, could not, by law, be changed.

But other things were happening she could not possibly know. The king’s insomnia made him search for something to put him at ease. His own vanity caused him to find peace in hearing of his own exploits. But that night, what was read to him was a story of a Jew who had saved the king’s life – yet he had never been rewarded. In a quick turn of events, that one reading influenced in a powerful way how he felt about the Jews, and readied him for Esther’s request in the next chapter.

As I’ve mentioned before, the word “God” is unmentioned in this book. And yet, you have to wonder if all the coincidences of this book are coincidences. The word “coincidence” would have never come to the first readers’ minds. They would have seen God in the details, looking out for His people.

When you think everything is “on you,” keep in mind that the Lord took it all on Himself years before. He’s working behind the scenes to bring about deliverance and blessing.

And one more thing: He isn’t working to bring about deliverance and blessing just to the “perfect” people. Esther, you remember, was a part of a harem. Her uncle Mordecai had opted not to return to the “promised land,” but to stay among the heathen in Babylon. Why would God use them or bless them? Only one reason: they were His people. This is how highly God favors His own family.