Saturday, October 17, 2015

Long-distance and Esther # 5

Mt 24:12 And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold.
:13 But he who endures to the end shall be saved.
Sound familiar?
Jesus said this so we would know in spiritual things, as in much else in life, what counts most is persistence, and tenacity. It’s a long-distance race, not a dash that will be over in a moment. What matters is endurance, not speed. Don’t let your love for God grow cold.
Esther 3:1 After these things, King Xerxes promoted Haman, the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, and advanced him and set his seat above all the princes who were with him.
:2 And all the king’s servants who were within the king’s gate bowed and paid homage to Haman, for so the king had commanded concerning him. But Mordecai would not bow or pay homage.
:3 Then the king’s servants who were within the king’s gate said to Mordecai, “Why do you transgress the king’s command?”
:4 Now it happened when they spoke to him daily and he would not listen to them, that they told it to Haman, to see whether Mordecai’s words would stand; for Mordecai had told them he was a Jew.
:5 When Haman saw that Mordecai did not bow or pay him homage, Haman was filled with wrath.
:6 But he disdained to lay hands on Mordecai alone, for they had told him of the people of Mordecai. Instead, Haman sought to destroy all the Jews who were throughout the whole kingdom of Xerxes – the people of Mordecai.
:7 In the first month, which is the month of Nisan, in the twelfth year of King Xerxes, they cast Pur (that is, the lot), before Haman to determine the day and the month, until it fell on the twelfth month, which is the month of Adar.
:8 Then Haman said to King Xerxes, “There is a certain people scattered and dispersed among the people in all the provinces of your kingdom, their laws are different from all other people’s, and they do not keep the king’s laws. Therefore it is not fitting for the king to let them remain.
:9 If it pleases the king, let a decree be written that they be destroyed, and I will pay ten thousand talents of silver into the hands of those who do the work, to bring it into the king’s treasures.”
:10 So the king took his signet ring from his hand and gave it to Haman, the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, the enemy of the Jews.
:11 And the king said to Haman, “The money and the people are given to you, to do with them as seems good to you.”
:12 Then the king’s scribes were called on the thirteenth day of the first month, and a decree was written according to all that Haman commanded – to the king’s satraps, to the governors who were over each province, to the officials of all people, to every province according to its script, and to every people in their language. In the name of King Xerxes it was written, and sealed with the king’s signet ring.
:13 And the letters were sent by couriers into all the king’s provinces, to destroy, to kill, and to annihilate all the Jews, both young and old, little children and women, in one day, on the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which is the month of Adar, and to plunder their possessions.
:14 A copy of the document was to be issued as law in every province, being published for all people, that they should be ready for that day.
:15 The couriers went out, hastened by the king’s command; and the decree was proclaimed to Shushan the citadel. So the king and Haman sat down to drink, but the city of Shushan was perplexed.
Mordecai refuses to bow to Haman because he feels like bowing is like he is worshipping him and it goes against his Jewish beliefs.
Haman, due to pride, is very angry. He decides all the Jews must pay for Mordecai not bowing. God’s provision of a year enables the Jews to take action.
Haman gets the king’s approval, though he doesn’t tell the king the real reason he wants it done.
What a difference between God and King Xerxes. The king doesn’t care that a whole group of his subjects will be murdered. He is very easily influenced by those around him.
Haman even says he’ll pay the king’s treasury for it to be done.
The king took Haman’s word about the Jews. He didn’t seek counsel from anyone else.
Once the decree is sealed with the king’s ring, nothing, not even the king can change it.

Mordecai kept his integrity by doing what he believed was right in the sight of God.

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