Thursday, June 24, 2010


I'm amazed at the story of Esther.

In her time, the people of Persia came to respect the Jews because of the uncanny way God protected them from harm. Haman, a high official who instigated a plot to wipe out the entire Hebrew population, found his plan frustrated in the most ironic possible way when he was required to honor Mordecai, the one Jew he loathed more than any other.

Haman had prepared to annihilate Jews everywhere, but because he hated Mordecai most, he had a special punishment prepared for just for him. He had set up an executioner's gallows in his front yard with Mordecai's name on it. Before he could get rid of Mordecai, though, his plan began to unravel. The king ordered him to heap praises and honors upon his foe (read the story).

When Haman went home and complained to his wife, she couldn't help but notice the irony and poetic justice. Her response was prophetic when she said, “If Mordecai, before whom you have begun to fall, is of the Jewish people, you will not overcome him but will surely fall before him.” - from Esther 6:13. How true, and how sure is God's power to save his people.

The New Testament section of the June 22 reading included Gamaliel's advice to the authorities not to outlaw the early Christians' efforts to spread the gospel message. He warned, “ . . . if this plan or this undertaking is of man, it will fail; but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them.” - from Acts 5:38-39. So true! God has an uncanny, poetic way of ensuring that his plans, both great and small, will come to pass.

For I know the plans I have for you,
declares the LORD, plans for welfare
and not for evil, to give you
a future and a hope.
- Jeremiah 29:11

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