Then the king held out the golden scepter toward her. So she arose and stood before him, and begged that the decree of Haman might be changed, for, she said, How can I bear to see my people perish?
Now the king himself, could not change the decree which he had allowed Haman to make, because, as we have read, no law, or decree, of the Medes and Persians might ever be changed. But King Ahasuerus told Esther and Mordecai that they might make another decree concerning the Jews, such an one as should please them, and might seal it with the king’s ring.
Then Mordecai called the king’s scribes together, and commanded them to write another decree, saying, that the Jews had permission, on the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, to gather themselves together in every city, and to slay and destroy all who should try to harm them.
And Mordecai sent copies of this decree to the different provinces of the kingdom, by messengers on horseback, and by riders on mules, camels, and young dromedaries. And the messengers went out in haste, according to the king’s commandment, for the decree was made at Shushan the palace.
And Mordecai, after he had done talking with the king, came out from the palace clothed in royal garments, such as the king himself wore, of blue and white, and with a crown of gold upon his head. All the people of Shushan were glad, and everywhere the Jews were filled with joy, and they feasted and were happy.
On the thirteenth day of the twelfth month the Jews took their swords, and gathered themselves together in every city, to fight for their lives; and they gained the victory over all who came out against them. But on the fourteenth and fifteenth days they rested from fighting against their enemies. So God saved Esther and her people from those who had hoped to destroy them.
Then Esther and Mordecai sent letters to all the Jews, telling them to keep the fourteenth and fifteenth days of the twelfth month, every year, as a time of feasting and gladness, when they should rejoice together, and give presents to one another and gifts to the poor. Because at that time they had been saved from their enemies, and their sorrow and mourning had been turned into joy. This festive observance is known as Purim.
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IN the book of the prophet Isaiah there is a verse that seems to summarize God’s relationship to this story of Esther. It is a Promise in the last verse of chapter 54:
No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of Jehovah, and their righteousness which is of me, saith Jehovah. [ASV]
Esther: A Great Bible Story!