by Christina Farris
1 After these things, when the wrath of king Ahasuerus was appeased, he remembered Vashti, and what she had done, and what was decreed against her.
2 Then said the king's servants that ministered unto him, Let there be fair young virgins sought for the king:
3 And let the king appoint officers in all the provinces of his kingdom, that they may gather together all the fair young virgins unto Shushan the palace, to the house of the women, unto the custody of Hege the king's chamberlain, keeper of the women; and let their things for purification be given them:
4 And let the maiden which pleaseth the king be queen instead of Vashti. And the thing pleased the king; and he did so.
5 Now in Shushan the palace there was a certain Jew, whose name was Mordecai, the son of Jair, the son of Shimei, the son of Kish, a Benjamite;
6 Who had been carried away from Jerusalem with the captivity which had been carried away with Jeconiah king of Judah, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had carried away.
7 And he brought up Hadassah, that is, Esther, his uncle's daughter: for she had neither father nor mother, and the maid was fair and beautiful; whom Mordecai, when her father and mother were dead, took for his own daughter.
8 So it came to pass, when the king's commandment and his decree was heard, and when many maidens were gathered together unto Shushan the palace, to the custody of Hegai, that Esther was brought also unto the king's house, to the custody of Hegai, keeper of the women.
9 And the maiden pleased him, and she obtained kindness of him; and he speedily gave her her things for purification, with such things as belonged to her, and seven maidens, which were meet to be given her, out of the king's house: and he preferred her and her maids unto the best place of the house of the women.
10 Esther had not shewed her people nor her kindred: for Mordecai had charged her that she should not shew it.
11 And Mordecai walked every day before the court of the women's house, to know how Esther did, and what should become of her.
12 Now when every maid's turn was come to go in to king Ahasuerus, after that she had been twelve months, according to the manner of the women, (for so were the days of their purifications accomplished, to wit, six months with oil of myrrh, and six months with sweet odours, and with other things for the purifying of the women;)
13 Then thus came every maiden unto the king; whatsoever she desired was given her to go with her out of the house of the women unto the king's house.
14 In the evening she went, and on the morrow she returned into the second house of the women, to the custody of Shaashgaz, the king's chamberlain, which kept the concubines: she came in unto the king no more, except the king delighted in her, and that she were called by name.
15 Now when the turn of Esther, the daughter of Abihail the uncle of Mordecai, who had taken her for his daughter, was come to go in unto the king, she required nothing but what Hegai the king's chamberlain, the keeper of the women, appointed. And Esther obtained favour in the sight of all them that looked upon her.
16 So Esther was taken unto king Ahasuerus into his house royal in the tenth month, which is the month Tebeth, in the seventh year of his reign.
17 And the king loved Esther above all the women, and she obtained grace and favour in his sight more than all the virgins; so that he set the royal crown upon her head, and made her queen instead of Vashti.
18 Then the king made a great feast unto all his princes and his servants, even Esther's feast; and he made a release to the provinces, and gave gifts, according to the state of the king.
19 And when the virgins were gathered together the second time, then Mordecai sat in the king's gate.
20 Esther had not yet shewed her kindred nor her people; as Mordecai had charged her: for Esther did the commandment of Mordecai, like as when she was brought up with him.
21 In those days, while Mordecai sat in the king's gate, two of the king's chamberlains, Bigthan and Teresh, of those which kept the door, were wroth, and sought to lay hand on the king Ahasuerus.
22 And the thing was known to Mordecai, who told it unto Esther the queen; and Esther certified the king thereof in Mordecai's name.
23 And when inquisition was made of the matter, it was found out; therefore they were both hanged on a tree: and it was written in the book of the chronicles before the king. There several things about the story of Esther one should really think about, is if you had to marry someone of not necessarily your choosing would you be loyal to him or her. If you chose a spouse because of looks alone after fifty years would you still be satisfied? If you choose someone because they were picked out to be your potential spouse, would you give them the time of day as you would a friend. Esther was orphan raised by her uncle who had come to Babylon and now under the rule of Persia by being forced from his home. He had no chose in serving the king, yet he chose loyalty. End of this chapter he would protect the king by discovering a plot of two of the King's chamberlains Bigthan and Teresh and it was written down. Mordecai's Esther uncle gave her strict rule not to reveal her true identy of being a Jew. She given seven maidens to attend her and also went through twelve months of purification with oils and ointments. Now if the king loved her and the king favored her, he would either call her back from the chamber of concubines or she would remain as the bride to the king. King was selecting his bride and spent time with each of those that were in the palace, that had been chosen worthy. If she was not to be chosen she be part of his harem. Esther was chosen as queen for he like Esther and favor her above all others.
The idea of having your spouse pre chosen is foreign idea in modern times to many Americans, yet this type of ritual of having a mate chosen, still occurs. Yet because of the laws of our land it is not something we have to practice or accept on a personal level. Esther chose loyalty to her uncle and the king. As children this is perhaps taught in regards to respecting those who are your guardians. Yet it even more then that, it stating sometimes you are in a situation that promotes you that you take full advantage of. Sometimes positions in life are more valuable to not only yourself but those of your community. Esther would be a queen that would protect her people in time to come. Her cross learning to be a queen of a nation that was not necessarily in favor of her people. Esther cross of making herself not only presentable to the king, but also making herself likable to that king and lovable. There things we do for our spouse we might not do for another, but to be picked to be queen based only if the king desired you, would take skill, and care and willness to do things she herself might not otherwise of done. She gain the prize of being queen and not a position as one of the king's concombine in his harem.
If God puts you in a place you are able to excel do it for his glory and honor, for by doing so, you just might be that hero to not only yourself but to those that are part of your life. Hard to take a lesson from this story, because of the moral idealogy of marriage. Esther would learn servanthood in becoming the kings wife as well as a great protector of her people. Sometimes we serve another only for the sake of honor and protection of oneself and others.
Dear Heavenly Father thank you for teaching us that some positions in life are not always our own desire, or for our own want, but it is to help more then ourselves, but those around us. In Jesus precious name, Amen.
Continual Scripture Study for Devotion:
Proverbs 31:29-31 KJV