• William T. Howe Ph.D.

May 31, 2021

Daily Reading: Esther 6-10

Esther 6:1

On that night could not the king sleep, and he commanded to bring the book of records of the chronicles; and they were read before the king.

The word God is not found in the book of Esther. Neither is Jehovah, or even Lord. However it seems that on every page of the book His unseen hand is at work. Haman wanted to kill all the Jews because one of them, Mordecai, would not bow to him in reverence nor stand for him in honor. Haman's hatred was so strong that it led to the slaying of at least 75,000 enemies of the Jews. Not only that, Haman's ten sons were also killed. They were hung on the gallows he built for Mordecai, on which he too was hung. Never did he imagine the results of his hatred toward one man. He thought that he had it all figured out, all planned, all ready for the sure destruction of the Jewish people. But he knew not God.

One instance of the Lord God's work behind the scenes is found in today's verse. On the night before Esther's banquet, the one she prepared for the king and Haman in which she would "turn the tables on her enemy", the king could not sleep. Wonder why? Why on this night, of all others? What caused King Ahasuerus' to be restless on that specific night? Coincidence? What about this, since he couldn't sleep he began thinking, why did his mind go to the book of the records? Furthermore, when the records were brought, how did it happen that, of all the records, he read the one section about Mordecai's kindness to the king in relaying a plot against him to the king's guards? Upon reading of this Jew's bravery in uncovering the assassination attempt, what caused the king to ask what honor had been given to Mordecai? He was told that the man who saved the king's life had been awarded no honor.

Furthermore, the timing is interesting in that when the king inquired as to who was in the court, it just so happened that Haman was there. Read the story, it's an amazing one of intrigue. Haman was humbled mightily thinking he would be honored, yet the king caused this hateful man to honor his great enemy, namely Mordecai.

Of all the questions raised in this devotion there is only one answer: God. Yes, it was the Lord God who caused the king's restless night, that caused his mind to be drawn to the records, that caused him to read the exact section dealing with Mordecai's faithfulness to the king, that caused Haman to be in the court, on and on we could go.

Humanly speaking, Esther is a hero of this book. Humanly speaking, Mordecai is a hero of this book. Humanly speaking, King Ahasuerus is a hero in that he gave the Jews the right to defend themselves. Humanly speaking, these are the heroes of the book. But spiritually speaking, God is the Hero! His unseen hand of power, protection, and provision is seen throughout. Yes, men have a free will, Mordecai, Esther, the king, and even Haman did all that they chose to do. But God too, has a will, in His will He is behind the scenes oftentimes doing those things that we call coincidence. Yes, He is. Not only in this story, but in all the stories of all the people who have ever lived. Almighty God is involved. He is always working. This is why we "work as though it is all up to us, and pray as though it is all up to God."

Until tomorrow, live for Christ today.

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