The Remarkable Story of Queen Esther - Part 2

Norbert Lieth

God’s Ingenious Timing
It is at once delightful and awe-inspiring to see how the Lord in His omnipotence makes provision, always takes action at just the right moment, and thus forestalls the enemy.

Long before Haman came to power, Mordecai was already employed at the royal palace (Esther 2:19; 3:2-3; 6:12). God had seen to that. Only this circumstance enabled Mordecai to uncover the murder plot against the king involving two other officials. Why? Because he was working alongside the conspirators at the king’s palace (Esther 2:21-23). He was no outsider. 

Only when Mordecai already had a position at the palace, the book of Esther reports: “After these things did king Ahasuerus promote Haman the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, and advanced him, and set his seat above all the princes that were with him” (Esther 3:1). Before the anti-Semite Haman had been given his place by man, Mordecai had already been called by God to the king’s palace for employment. Everything was under His control.

God also led Esther to King Ahasuerus, who made her his queen, before Haman’s plotting against the Jews even began (Esther 2:17; 4:4).

Mordecai and Esther found themselves at just the right location, without any of their own doing (and it was by no means an ordinary place!), in order to be used by the Lord at just the right moment. And at just the right time, the king could not sleep. At his command the historical archives (chronicles) were brought and portions from them read to him. In this way—again, at just the right moment—Mordecai’s good deed became known, through which an assassination of the king was prevented. At just the right moment, Haman was present in the palace, and at just the right moment, Mordecai was rewarded (chapter 6). Even though God waited a while for the sake of a higher purpose, He always intervened at the right time!

“God, where are You? I don’t feel Your presence. I can’t sense You. Why haven’t You answered me yet? Couldn’t it be a little faster?” When God takes a long time, it is always for a definite reason.

What is the picture in the Middle East today? We see that enmity toward Israel becomes ever more threatening, pressing from all sides, intensifying as time passes. The whole world seems to not only hear but also accept anti-Semitic defamation. The nations of the world have become desensitized and incapable of distinguishing between truth and lies. Meanwhile, Israel’s international position deteriorates daily. Yet God refrains from action…He is waiting. And that is for the best, because His inaction serves a very specific purpose…

We also, you and I, have not been put in this generation without a reason. The Lord has not placed us where we are for our private pleasure. God doesn’t begrudge us the good things, but primarily we are where we are in order to complete a task.

Are you looking only for your own comfort, for a nice, quiet life? In that case, you are truly in the wrong place. Mordecai and Esther were not in an easy place, but God expressly wanted to use them there.

The almighty and all-knowing God is always ahead of the enemy, even when we have the impression that it is the other way around. The Lord does not have to act only with hindsight. He has control of the situation before it occurs; nothing can surprise Him. God reacts long before His enemies take action, even when no one notices it at the time.

A God Who Doesn’t Sleep
God is most clearly present where one senses Him the least. Often, God works in secret (Isaiah 45:15).

Within the book of Esther, God’s name is not directly mentioned. For some, this is a reason not to believe in the Holy Spirit’s inspiration of the book. Actually, however, this book in particular demonstrates that God is always present. That He, though seemingly in the background, is in the foreground and at work behind the scenes. This book was not written in this manner without reason. God intended that His name not be mentioned in the book of Esther. With this He was pursuing a specific purpose, and thus it was inspired by the Holy Spirit. This ought to encourage us never to believe that God is absent. That is why His name does not appear in this book, in which His working is so particularly evident.

God uses even the profane and the godless to reach His holy purpose. Nothing can thwart His plan.

Do you have worries and problems? Problems with society, worries in your personal life? In that case I would like to tell you something about worries and problems.

Degenerate Society
In the book of Esther, we are dealing with the time in which a proud, impulsive, unpredictable and alcohol-dependent king was governing. We are dealing with a realization and display of power and wealth that begs its equal in history (Persian kings had diamonds even in their beards). We are looking at a bureaucracy that only cared about its own welfare. We are dealing with a misogynous society. We are dealing with a society where harems and eunuchs existed only for sexual gratification: for one year the women were made beautiful, and when the king called they had to be ready (Esther 2:12). We are looking at a murder plot against the king, which was exposed and recorded in the archives. We are dealing with much fear, unrest and uncertainty. There is corruption, prejudice, slander, cunning, arrogance, intrigue, and deviousness, paired with an unprecedented hatred of Jews. We are dealing with a society which stood in opposition to everything that Judaism stands for; namely, the revelation of God. A whole people was hated because it represented a true God and because its history is God’s history (Esther 3:8-11). So, it wasn’t enough to kill one man; the whole people had to be annihilated. Under Haman and Ahasuerus, international law was perverted to the detriment of the Jewish people (in 127 provinces), contrary to God’s promises.

Here we see indeed how our own time is mirrored or foreshadowed. We see how quickly a morally and ethically degenerate humanity turns against the Jewish people, because they are the visible evidence of the reliable statements of divine promises: human law versus God’s law.

News From Israel - 04/2017

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