Esther 8 Commentary

Esther 8 Commentary

“And many people of other nationalities became Jews because fear of the Jews had seized them.” Verse 17. Of course, this is not the kind of evangelization envisaged by the LORD when he called Abraham to be a blessing to the nations.

In the Book of Ruth, Naomi’s testimony was so good that the Moabite Ruth declared: “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. Ruth 1 verse 16. In Esther, some individuals want to become Jews probably because it’s dangerous not to be one. It is not because they have seen the God of the Jews.

The New Testament saint may also find the thought of the Jews avenging themselves on their enemies quite unchristian. But who says these Jews here, or indeed any other Jew is a model to follow. There is only one model; the man Jesus Christ. So really, the imperfections riddled everywhere in the Book are expected. They provide us with examples of how the saint shouldn’t live.

However, there is no hiding the fact that Esther’s courage and her cousin Mordecai’s courage played an important role in the salvation of the Jews at a critical moment in the history of the nation. The LORD had commanded Joshua to be courageous and strong. The LORD honors every effort made towards obedience.

As in the other chapters of this book, there is no mention of God. This anomaly actually serves a purpose. Even in places where Jesus is never mentioned, the LORD still has ultimate charge of events and is in total control. He is the God of the universe. The LORD is not to be confined within the walls of the Sanctuary, or indeed within the parameters defined by our church doctrines. It is sinful to want to exclude the LORD from the existence that the LORD created for himself.

The change in Mordecai’s fortunes may also indicate the ultimate victory of good over evil.

Haman may be dead but the evil he created isn’t dead. Evil cannot be eliminated by simply killing evil men. You easily understand why you and I can still read these lines because the LORD hasn’t used this formula. When we see Xerxes write another edict to counter Haman’s evil, we quickly remind ourselves of the day when the King of kings will reverse the order of life and bring us back to the Garden of peace and tranquility.

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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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