Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Esther-The Decree that Saved More than a Thousand Lives

By Mary Vee
Esther 8

From Mordecai's Journal

Photo Coutesy
I am Mordecai, a humble servant of the Almighty and a Jew.

I am standing in the court of King Xerxes. He has given me his signet ring and the honor of second in his empire to replace the evil Haman.

The huge problem facing me is although Haman has been punished by hanging from the gallows, the decree he wrote to kill all the Jews in the twelfth month still stands. 

Only moments ago, the king gave me permission to write a new decree that would address the problem.

See, once a decree has been written and signed with the king's signet ring, it can never be undone. So Haman's order to kill all the Jews in the twelfth month stands. I whispered a prayer to the Almighty, asking His help to create a decree that would undo Haman's.

King Xerxes called for the royal secretaries to record the decree. They've just arrived, and God has also given me the perfect words. I turned to Esther who was standing close by and smiled. "God has given me an idea. Trust me."

The concern on her face eased.

This is the twenty-third day of the third month. Nine months to prepare for Haman's destruction. I told the royal secretaries to write these words in the new decree:

This edict grants the Jews in every city the right 
1. To gather together and protect themselves. 
2. To destroy and kill any armed force of any nationality or province that might attack them, their women, or children. 
3. To plunder the property of their enemies. 

I wrote King Xerxes' name at the bottom, sealed the decree with the king's signet ring, and sent them by mounted couriers who rode their fastest horses especially bred for the king.

The day appointed for the Jews to do this in all provinces of King Xerxes is the thirteen day of the twelfth month, which happened to be the same day Haman had appointed for all the Jews to be killed. 

This edict was then translated to every language in the empire and read to all Jews and leaders in the land and gave the Jews plenty of time to be ready for the day to avenge themselves.

The story has much more to tell...come back to read what happens next.

sources: New International Version, New King James Version  

1. What had the king given to Mordecai?
2. What problem did Mordecai first see to take care of?
3  Why did the king call the royal secretaries?
4. Who did Mordecai ask to help him think of the right words?
5. What permission did the Jews receive from the king?
6. Why was this one day given to the Jews to defend themselves?

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