Read Esther 6
That night the king could not sleep; so he ordered the book of the chronicles, the record of his reign, to be brought in and read to him. 2 It was found recorded there that Mordecai had exposed Bigthana and Teresh, two of the king’s officers who guarded the doorway, who had conspired to assassinate King Xerxes.
3 “What honor and recognition has Mordecai received for this?” the king asked.
“Nothing has been done for him,” his attendants answered.
4 The king said, “Who is in the court?” Now Haman had just entered the outer court of the palace to speak to the king about impaling Mordecai on the pole he had set up for him.
5 His attendants answered, “Haman is standing in the court.”
“Bring him in,” the king ordered.
6 When Haman entered, the king asked him, “What should be done for the man the king delights to honor?”
Now Haman thought to himself, “Who is there that the king would rather honor than me?” 7 So he answered the king, “For the man the king delights to honor, 8 have them bring a royal robe the king has worn and a horse the king has ridden, one with a royal crest placed on its head. 9 Then let the robe and horse be entrusted to one of the king’s most noble princes. Let them robe the man the king delights to honor, and lead him on the horse through the city streets, proclaiming before him, ‘This is what is done for the man the king delights to honor!’”
10 “Go at once,” the king commanded Haman. “Get the robe and the horse and do just as you have suggested for Mordecai the Jew, who sits at the king’s gate. Do not neglect anything you have recommended.”
11 So Haman got the robe and the horse. He robed Mordecai, and led him on horseback through the city streets, proclaiming before him, “This is what is done for the man the king delights to honor!”
12 Afterward Mordecai returned to the king’s gate. But Haman rushed home, with his head covered in grief, 13 and told Zeresh his wife and all his friends everything that had happened to him.
His advisers and his wife Zeresh said to him, “Since Mordecai, before whom your downfall has started, is of Jewish origin, you cannot stand against him—you will surely come to ruin!” 14 While they were still talking with him, the king’s eunuchs arrived and hurried Haman away to the banquet Esther had prepared.
Today’s chapter gives us glimpses of God working behind the scenes to bring deliverance to the Jews. Despite the grand scheme Haman hatched to kill Mordecai and his people, God used the king’s sleepless night to accomplish His purposes. Apparently, daily events were recorded in a book. The king ordered the book read aloud, and “They found the written report of how Mordecai had informed on Bigthana and Teresh, two eunuchs who guarded the king’s entrance, when they planned to assassinate King Ahasuerus” (v. 2). The official records marked this event happening five years previously, but Mordecai had never been rewarded, and worse yet, he and his people were about to be wiped out.
The plan of Haman begins to unravel from here on a grand scale. Just when Haman is about to ask the king to hang Mordecai on the gallows he prepared, the king rewards Mordecai’s loyalty. “So Haman took the garment and the horse. He clothed Mordecai and paraded him through the city square, crying out before him–this is what is done for the man the king wants to honor” (v. 11). Mordecai, who had been driven by overwhelming grief to put on sackcloth and ashes and bitterly wail in the middle of the city, is now given honor and special recognition.
And God is not finished yet! Mordecai’s period of mourning is about to be over. Isaiah 61:3 proclaims, “To provide for those who mourn in Zion, to give them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, festive oil instead of mourning, and splendid clothes instead of despair. And they shall be called righteous trees planted by the Lord, to glorify Him.” Hallelujah! Let this be a beacon of hope for us. Through every hard and sanctifying moment, our God is at work. In the waiting, the suffering, the surreal experiences we walk through, we are seen, known and loved by our Savior who gave His life for us.
- Haman’s life was riddled with pride and selfish ambition. Where have these destructive forces crept into your life? Confess this to your Life Group.
- Mordecai modeled faithfulness despite his circumstances. Who do you know that is living out their faith intentionally, despite the odds? Make a point to tell them this week and encourage them on their journey.
- Write down/journal 3 things that remind you of God’s sovereignty in your life. Turn them into a prayer of thanksgiving to Him.
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