Friday, April 8, 2011

The Book of Esther 10


The Book of Esther
Esther 5:1-8

Now it came to pass on the third day, that Esther put on her royal apparel, and stood in the inner court of the king's house, over against the king's house: and the king sat upon his royal throne in the royal house, over against the gate of the house.  And it was so, when the king saw Esther the queen standing in the court, that she obtained favour in his sight: and the king held out to Esther the golden sceptre that was in his hand. So Esther drew near, and touched the top of the sceptre.  Then said the king unto her, What wilt thou, queen Esther? and what is thy request? it shall be even given thee to the half of the kingdom.  And Esther answered, If it seem good unto the king, let the king and Haman come this day unto the banquet that I have prepared for him.  Then the king said, Cause Haman to make haste, that he may do as Esther hath said. So the king and Haman came to the banquet that Esther had prepared.

And the king said unto Esther at the banquet of wine, What is thy petition? and it shall be granted thee: and what is thy request? even to the half of the kingdom it shall be performed.  Then answered Esther, and said, My petition and my request is;  If I have found favour in the sight of the king, and if it please the king to grant my petition, and to perform my request, let the king and Haman come to the banquet that I shall prepare for them, and I will do to morrow as the king hath said.

Esther Steps Forward
The time has come for Esther to approach the king with uncertainty of heart and the threat of death emerging. I can only imagine the pressure, anxiety, and anticipation she must have felt prior to her appearance before him. The preparation and planning of this moment, even down to the royal robe she wore, was of the utmost importance and Esther took every precaution in her feminine strategy to fulfill court protocol. Esther now stands before the king seated upon the throne. He peers through the columns of the royal palace and sees Esther in all of her beauty and fine apparel. What will be his response? Will he give acceptance to come forward or will he deny her the right to approach him? The scene is dramatic and gripping as the king extends his golden scepter to Esther, indicating she may step forward to touch the tip of the scepter, this progression symbolizes her acceptance.
The King’s Reply
In all probability, the king must have been surprised at Esther’s unannounced appearance and thought that her request had to be an urgent one to reveal herself before him unexpectedly. The king’s response to her is in the form a question, “What is thy request?” and then declares, “It shall be even given to thee to the half of the kingdom.” This statement was a hyperbole: an exaggerated, overstatement, or embellished proclamation intended to cause an effect or result. Esther, in all her beauty and costly array, summons the king and Haman to a banquet she has prepared for them on this day. Esther’s plan, is to accuse Haman of plotting against her and her people in a conspiracy to destroy them and yet, Haman is unaware of her intentions.

Esther was a brave and daring queen to invite Haman to a banquet as her exclusive guest and to accompanying the king. Her intent was to hold a private meeting with Haman and the king in a much less formal dinner-party and then bring accusations against him. After the meal, the king again requests from Esther her desired petition. Her response to the king was,“If I have found favour in the sight of the king, and if it please the king to grant my petition, and to perform my request, let the king and Haman come to the banquet that I shall prepare for them, and I will do to morrow as the king hath said.”  Esther plans another meal with the king and Haman the following day after discovering, she had not lost favor with her husband, the king. 

Thought: Esther acted in great confidence and yet, God was certainly in control of the entire situation. God used her bold faith, her beauty and her bravery to approach the most difficult challenge of her life with determination and purpose. God gives us the ability to face any trial with the same strength of character as Esther. She fasted and prayed--watched and waited and then with fearless courage, took a course of action only God could design. Are you willing to allow God to design your course in life? He is all knowing, all seeing, and all powerful--who best to construct and fashion your life to His honor and glory.

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