The Cloud of Witnesses
Former title Lessons From the People of the Bible
Lesson 3: Esther – Victorious Hostess
Esther 5:1-8; 7:1-10.
Co-operate with God and miracles happen
Esther had every ‘right’ to go straight to the King and demand Haman’s head for the decree he had bought in order to annihilate her people - the Jews. However, we find Esther the perfect hostess and gracious Queen. She showed what self-control is all about.
In one sense, the problem was not hers - it was Haman’s and the King’s! They had contrived the disaster. However, the rescue would require tact and wisdom. Esther obtained both. How? By waiting on God! She fasted and prayed. Notice she didn’t fast for Haman’s death – she fasted so she would obtain wisdom on how to save her people. We so often rush in to ‘kill’ the opposition rather than remembering the issue is to save the people!
As the old saying goes – when surrounded by hungry crocodiles it’s hard to remember that we are here to drain the swamp!
Esther waited. She Fasted. She enlisted the support and ‘buy-in’ of the rest of the Jews before she approached the King. She knew she could die if he didn’t want to see her! But she laid her life on the line. She then devised a plan to win over her husband, and yet at the same time, expose the wicked Haman.
Would it work? She hoped so, but as we read, there was a lot that could go wrong. Haman was already preparing to dispose of Mordecai. But he had omitted God from his plans!
Esther submitted hers to God and left the rest to Him. God had a few plans of His own and so Haman found himself promoting Mordecai rather than ‘lifting him up’ on the gallows he had made for him! Then at the second banquet, after Esther had asked for her life, He helped Haman fling himself at her. Not a good move in front of an irate husband and King!
She had begged for her life – Haman lost his! Then she had to write the law to redress the edict destroying the Jews – and it was so!
Esther would say to us today...
When your back is up against the wall, don’t forget to look up, because Your Salvation is right there with you.
Father, please help me remember that my deadlines are not necessarily Your deadlines! But more importantly, help me to remember that You have NEVER MISSED any of Your deadlines yet. Help me to look above the circumstances and see You reigning in majesty. Help me hold on to the truth that the circumstances of life NEVER change the promises of God – Your Promises to me. Help me to hold out for victory - just like Esther. Amen.
Luke 1:26-38; Exodus 14:10-31; Joshua 3:7-17; Psalm 37:3-7.
What stops us trusting God in emergencies?
How can we see ‘through’ the circumstances and accept the promises of God?
Why is it so hard to wait for God?
How can we learn to trust God in every situation?