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Friday, September 04, 2015

A Night With The King

Esther and the King
Esther and the King (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The story of Esther is one of the most loved of Bible stories. Some may even classify it with the fairy- tale love stories we grew up with. When you read the book of Esther, you will find everything to delight your fiction taste buds: a king falling in love with an ordinary girl, a bad guy trying to stir up trouble and being justly punished, and a happy-ever-after ending to the story. But if you are a Bible reader, you know that behind every story is a much deeper meaning, and Esther is no exception.

Many things stand out for me in this lovely story, but in this post I want to focus on one point in the plot. When King Xerxes decided to choose a queen to replace Vashti, girls were brought in from all over the land to prepare to spend one night with the king. The girls had to go through a whole year of preparation before they could meet with him. After that night, the king would decide who should be his queen.

The story says, "And this is how she would go to the king: Anything she wanted was given her to take with her from the harem to the king's palace" (Esther 2 : 13).  

"When the turn came for Esther (the girl Mordecai had adopted, the daughter of his uncle Abihail) to go to the king, she asked for nothing other than what Hegai, the king's eunuch who was in charge of the harem, suggested. And Esther won the favor of everyone who saw her" (v 15).

"Now the king was attracted to Esther more than to any of the other women, and she won his favor and approval more than any of the other virgins. So he set a royal crown on her head and made her queen instead of Vashti" ( 17).  

Esther did not go out of her way to impress the king. She went through the required preparations, but she asked for nothing other than what Hegai suggested. And yet, the king loved her more than any of the others. The Bible does not tell us if she was more beautiful than the other girls, all it says is that she won the king's favor. In fact, of all the girls, she was probably the least likely to be chosen because she was a Jew. But she kept it a secret as her uncle Mordecai had instructed her.

The word "favor" is mentioned 117 times in the Bible. Psalm 5 : 12 says, "For surely, O LORD, you bless the righteous; you surround them with your favor as with a shield."

When God gives you favor, you don't have to worry about whether others are pleased with you. Esther found favor with the king because God was with her. Later, when the wicked Haman sought to destroy the Jews, God again gave Esther favor with the king and Haman's plan was miffed. Do you have to meet with someone important, or carry out an important assignment? Don't look at what is against you, look at Who is for you. Ask Him to bless you with His favor and see what happens.

Want to read more about Esther and other famous women of the Bible? Click on the image below: 

And here's a video for you to enjoy;

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