Esther 2: Esther
August 21, 2020
TODAY'S BIBLE READING:
The story continues. The king is looking for a new wife, and he goes about it in a way that only ancient Eastern despotic monarchs could even dream of: he orders that a search be made for the most beautiful young women in the land, that they be gathered to his harem, given all the beauty treatments that money could buy, and each then paraded in front of him one by one so that he could pick the one that took his fancy (2:2-4). It was a sort of perverted version of the show America’s Got Talent.
Esther is beautiful, and she is introduced to us now for the first time in the care of Mordecai (2:5-7). She is taken to the king’s palace, too (2:8), and she wins the favor of all those around her (2:15). She acts wisely and takes the advice of those who are in authority over her, who know what they are doing, and who look on her with approval and favor. When she goes to the king, he decides to make her queen (2:16-17).
Meanwhile, Mordecai is sitting at the king’s door and he overhears a plot against the king (2:21). He reports it to Esther who reports it to the king, and this is recorded in the chronicles of the king (2:22-23). This shall become important later in the story, as we shall see.
Once again, the name of God is conspicuous by its absence, and yet God’s hand of blessing and protection is visible throughout all the aspects of the story. It reminds us that if a woman like Esther can be in the center of God’s will in a harem, then it is possible to follow God when the most devastating circumstances are forced upon us, be it jail or worse. God can never be separated from the Christian, and there is the power of his presence which cannot be denied to those who trust in him.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Josh Moody (Ph.D., University of Cambridge) is the senior pastor of College Church in Wheaton, IL., president and founder of God Centered Life Ministries, and author of several books including How the Bible Can Change Your Life and John 1-12 For You.
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