Esther 3 Commentary

Esther 3 Commentary

It should be bad enough to be proud. But to combine both pride and mental weakness in one person can be a real disaster. That is the picture we get of King Xerxes. Couldn’t he have reasoned that there was something wrong with Haman’s proposal? It was both petty and personal. Should an entire ethnic grouping be wiped out on this account?

Regardless, King Xerxes puts his weight behind Haman’s evils and then sits down to drink. Strange.

What is exactly happening here? It all starts with Mordecai’s lack of respect for Haman. Probably, without Mordecai’s insolence, the murderous crisis in this book doesn’t exist at all. But should we be so harsh on Mordecai? Haman is a bad man who doesn’t need a lot of encouragement to do evil.

We arrived here with a fairly good impression of Mordecai. There should be something more to his behavior towards Haman. Haman probably represented a much deeper anti-Jewish feeling among the other exiles. Being Jewish represented an obvious disadvantage. This could be the reason why Mordecai forbade Esther from disclosing her Jewish identity.

Haman’s case against the Jews is quite interesting. Their customs are different from those of other people. They keep themselves separate, and they do not obey the king’s laws. Saints should be proud of this record. If the king’s laws are what we suspect them to be, pagan and evil in nature, then we can easily understand Mordecai’s reaction. He would not be the first offender. Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego disobeyed similar laws and the punishment was similarly heavy. If the law to bow down before Haman was a call to worship Haman, then you again understand why Mordecai had problems with this law.

Saints should have problems with many laws and customs in the world today. The TV industry should be a source of great concern to the godly man. Music, entertainment, fashion, and the marketplace; nearly everywhere the saint turns. There should be a constant discomfort within the saint. Our customs should be different. We must remain separate. If this is the case for which we must remain poor, let it be so. If this is our offense for which we must lose friends, then, let it be so.

Why not? There is someone higher than Xerxes who hears these cases and His judgment is always perfect.

He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he. Deuteronomy 32 verse 4

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Published by Joseph Malekani

Joseph Malekani is a born-again Christian with a strong PAOG/Baptist background. He is heavily involved in student ministry with ZAFES – an IFES movement with focus on student ministry in Zambia. He is married to Audrey and they have two lovely children.

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