Today’s message is about Purim. The Hebrew word Purim means Lots, for The Feast of Lots, or The Festival of Purim. And Purim is a great Jewish Holiday that began Thursday at sundown, February 25th, to Friday at sundown, February 26th.
Purim is a Jewish Holiday but not a Commanded Festival of GOD.
Purim happened during the days of The Great Persian Empire in 355 B.C.E./B.C. Persia is Iran.
The story of Purim is written in The Book of Esther.
And the Title of our message is, Purim, The Threat of Death That Turned to Joy.
The Persian Empire was massive. It stretched from India to Ethiopia and had perhaps the entire world’s Jewish population living throughout the Empire. Israel was part of The Persian Empire.
Ahasuerus was The King of Persia. And he was a weak King who did not understand the cultural differences of his Empire.
Ahasuerus is better known as King Xerxes. And he helped create Purim.
The Persian Empire controlled 44% of the world’s population. I always think of what The Bible says. The Most High Rules over the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomsoever He will, and sets up over it the lowest of men.
HEBREW BIBLE DANIEL 4.14, CHRISTIAN BIBLE DANIEL 4.17
So in the third year of the king’s reign, he made a huge feast for all his princes, and servants, and nobles, and all the powers of Persia and Media. They were all there before the king at his feast. Persia and Media are current day Iran.
And the king gloried in the riches of his glorious kingdom. And his feast went on for six months. Think on that for a moment.
And the king followed that feast with a feast for all the people who were present in the Shushan Palace for the small and the great for seven days in the Court of the garden in the king’s palace with all the king’s luxurious and garish furnishings. And the drinking continued.
Shushan was the name for both the Palace and the large city where the Palace was located.
That Palace and city would be the ruins of Persepolis in today’s Iran.
And Vashti, the queen also made a feast for the women in the royal house which belonged to the king Ahasuerus.
Now on the seventh day of one of those feasts when the king was drunk and happy with wine, he commanded his servants to bring his queen Vashti before him with her royal crown to show off her beauty to the people, and the princes, for she was beautiful to look at.
But the queen refused. And the king was beside himself with anger.
So the king called his experts, and his wise men, and those who knew Persian law and judgment, and those who saw the king’s face every day, and those who sat first in the kingdom. And the king asked these people, What shall we do to queen Vashti according to law because she has not performed the commandment of the king?
And one of the king’s wise men answered, and said, Before the king and the princes, the queen Vashti has not done wrong to the king only, but also to all the princes, and all the people who are in all the provinces of the great empire of the king Ahasuerus. For this deed of the queen will be told to all the women in the empire, and they will despise their husbands when they hear that the queen Vashti refused to appear before her husband the king. And there will be contempt and wrath throughout the kingdom.
The Bible says, Whatsoever The LORD pleases, that is what The LORD does. Therefore Queen Vashti’s refusal to appear before the king is of The LORD our GOD to bring a Jewish girl Esther to be Queen in The Great Persian Empire because of the hatred, and sorrow that was to come. But that sorrow in The Jewish community will turn to joy.
ISAIAH 46.9-11, HEBREWS 4.3
So the wise man continued speaking. If it please the king, do not let queen Vashti come before the king Ahasuerus. But let the king give Vashti’s estate to another who is better than she. And when the king’s decree is published throughout the empire, for it is great, all the wives will give honor to their husbands, both to the great and to the small.
And the saying pleased the king and the princes, and the king did exactly as his wise man said.
So the king had letters sent to all the king’s provinces that every man should bear rule in his own house. And the letters were published according to the many languages of the peoples.
And in time when the king was calm, he remembered Vashti and what she had done, and what was decreed against her. But the king did not change his mind. It was said, and it is written.
And yet another proposal was set before the king. Hold a beauty contest. Let the most beautiful virgins in the kingdom gather at the Shushan Palace to the house of the women, and to the custody of the king’s chamberlain, the keeper of the women. And let their things for purification be given to them. And let the lady who pleases the king be queen instead of Vashti. And that pleased the king.
Now in Shushan the Palace, there was a certain Jewish man whose name was Mordecai, a Benjamite who had been carried away from Jerusalem with the captivity whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had carried away. And Mordecai brought up Hadassah, that is Esther, his uncle’s daughter. For Esther had neither father or mother. And Esther was Jewish, and she grew into a beautiful woman whom Mordecai, when Esther’s father and mother died, took for his own daughter.
So after reading the king’s announcement about the beauty contest with the winner becoming Queen of Persia, Mordecai brought Esther to the king’s house to the custody of the keeper of the women. And immediately Esther found favor with the keeper of the women, and he preferred her above all the other ladies.
The secret things belong to The LORD Our GOD, but those things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever that we are to do all The Words of This Law, The Torah, GOD’S Law of Moses.
HEBREW BIBLE DEUTERONOMY 29.28, CHRISITAN BIBLE DEUTERONOMY 29.29
The Jewish girl Esther was soon to become Queen of Persia.
Esther told no one that she was Jewish because that is what Mordecai told her to do. Don’t tell any one you are Jewish.
And the the king loved Esther more than any other woman, and he placed the Royal Crown on Esther’s head, and made her Queen instead of Vashti. And the king made a feast, and another feast called, Esther’s feast. And the king made a release of something in the provinces, and he gave gifts according to the estate of the king.
GOD is not mentioned in this story of Purim, but The HOLY ONE OF ISRAEL, BLESSED BE HE is very much involved, for THE LORD GOD OF ISRAEL will never forsake His People.
And Mordecai, Esther’s uncle, overheard a plot to kill the king Ahasuerus. And he told it to Esther the Queen, and Esther reported it to the king, and that the information was made known by Mordecai. And after a thorough investigation, those who planned the king’s death were both hung on a tree. And it was written in the Book of the Chronicles before the king.
Now comes the rise of the arch enemy of The Jews, Haman the Agagite, the anti Semite Jew hater. Haman was a descendant of Agag the Amalakite king.
So after all these things, king Ahasuerus promoted the anti Semite Haman the Agagite above all the king’s princes. And every one bowed to this Haman, but Mordecai. And it was told to Haman that Mordecai was a Jew.
And when Mordecai continued not to bow down to Haman, Haman the anti Semite became furious and hated Mordecai.
So Haman set out to kill Mordecai and all the Jews in the kingdom.
This was 2,476 years ago. So you can see that anti-Semitism is not a new thing but an old cancer.
Haman’s ancestors were Amalakites. And surprisingly, the Amalakites descend from Esau Jacob’s twin brother. And you well know that Jacob was a great man of GOD. And GOD named Jacob Israel. Esau and Jacob are the twin sons of Isaac, and the grandsons of Abraham.
GENESIS 36.9-12, EXODUS 17.8-16, DEUTERONOMY 25.17-19, 1 SAMUEL 15.1-35
So back to Haman the anti-Semite. Haman’s people began to toss Pur, that is, they tossed Lots before Haman to determine the best time for Haman and his gang to kill the Jews.
And here’s an anti-Semitic lie. Haman said to king Ahasuerus, There is a certain people scattered throughout and dispersed among the people in all the provinces of your kingdom. And their laws are different from all people. And they do not keep the king’s law. Therefore it is not to the king’s profit to let them live.
If it please the king, Haman said, let it be written that The Jews be destroyed, and I will pay ten thousand talents of silver into the king’s treasure to get the job done.
And here’s the failure of king Ahasuerus. The king took his ring from off his finger and gave it to Haman the Agagite, the enemy of The Jews, and said to Haman, Do with them as it seems good to you. ESTHER 3.1, 8-11
Anti-Semites are stupid. They are jealous of The Jewish People because GOD loves The Jewish People, and has Chosen The Jewish People to be a Holy People to The LORD Their GOD, to be a Special People to Himself above all people that are upon the face of the earth. And because The LORD loves The Jewish People. And that GOD Has Chosen The Jewish People to be His Servants and His Witnesses.
Anti-Semitic jealousy grows into anti-Semitic hatred of Jewish People. And anti-Semites have an evil spirit of hate toward The Jewish People. And anti-Semitism is hatred of GOD because GOD chose The Jewish People to be His Chosen. And GOD is Jewish.
EXODUS 4.22, MATTHEW 1.1-2
The Jewish People brought The Bible to the world writing The words of Genesis through Revelation from the Words GOD spoke to them in Bible times for all humanity to know, and believe, and understand GOD. And that there is only One GOD and no others. And His Name is Messiah Yeshua.
And that GOD requires all humanity to be obedient to every Word GOD Speaks Written in The Bible for a good, healthy, and peaceful life on earth, and eternal life in The Kingdom of Heaven.
And it is The Jewish People who gave The Jewish Messiah Yeshua to the world, Who is GOD Almighty, Who gave His Life as a human being for the forgiveness of your sins for your Salvation, and Eternal Life in Heaven. But anti-Semites are too dumb to see that.
DEUTERONOMY 7.6-8, ISAIAH 43.10-11
Not only are anti-Semites dumb, but king Ahasuerus fell into that category of dumb. The king’s wife, Queen Esther is Jewish, but the king, remarkably, doesn’t know that. And that spells death to Haman because GOD blesses those who bless The Jewish People, and GOD curses those who curse The Jewish People. But GOD forgave the king because he did help The Jewish People.
GENESIS 12.3, MATTHEW 25.31-46
So the king had his scribes write all that Haman the anti-Semite said, and sent it to the king’s lieutenants, and to the governors that were over every province, and the rulers of the people of every province after their own language in the name of king Ahasuerus. And the writings were sealed with the king’s ring.
And the letters were sent by horseback into all the king’s provinces to destroy, kill, and cause to perish all Jews both young and old, little children and women, in one day on the thirteenth day of the twelfth Hebrew Month Adar. That anniversary was this past Thursday. And to plunder and rob The Jews for a prey. A decree if accomplished would have wiped The Jews off the earth. That will never happen because GOD loves The Jewish People with an everlasting love. He will never leave them nor forsake them.
ESTHER 3.13-15, JEREMIAH 31.1-3
And the king’s decree of death was given in the Shushan Palace. And the king and Haman sat down to drink. But the people in the city of Shushan were worried and confused.
And when Mordecai read what was to be done to his People, he tore his clothes and put on sackcloth and ashes, and went out through the city crying with a loud bitter cry. And he came to the front of the Palace gate, but no one was allowed to enter the king’s gate clothed in sackcloth.
And in all the provinces there was a great mourning among The Jewish People, and fasting, and weeping, and wailing, and many lay in sackcloth and ashes.
And Esther’s maids told her about Mordecai, and she was grieved and sent him clothing, and told Mordecai to take off the sackcloth. But he refused and would not receive her gift.
And Esther sent one of the king’s chamberlains to find out what was wrong. And when he came to Mordecai, Mordecai told him of Haman’s payment to the king’s treasuries to kill and destroy all the Jewish People. And he gave him a copy of the writing of the decree to kill all the Jews. And show it to Esther, Mordecai said, and tell her to go to the king and plead with him for her People.
And when the chamberlain told Esther the words of Mordecai, and the decree to kill all The Jews, she sent the chamberlain back to Mordecai to tell him that whoever comes to the king and is not called, there is but one law, to put that person to death. Because the king must hold out his scepter that the person may live. And I have not been called to come to the king these past thirty days.
So Mordecai sent word back to Queen Esther, Do not think within yourself that you will escape in the king’s house more than all The Jews. For if you altogether hold your peace at this time, then shall relief and deliverance arise to The Jews from another place. But you and your father’s house will be destroyed. And who knows whether you are come to the kingdom for such a time as this?
Then Esther returned her answer to Mordecai. Go and gather all The Jewish People together that are present in Shushan, and fast for me. Neither eat or drink for three days, night and day. I and also my maidens will fast likewise. And then I will go to the king which is not according to law. And if I perish, I perish.
So Mordecai went his way and did according to all that Esther told him.
So on the third day, Esther put on her royal clothing and stood in the inner court of the king’s house, and the king sat on his royal throne in the royal house.
And when the king saw Esther the Queen standing in the court, she received favor in his sight. And the king held out the golden scepter to Queen Esther, and Esther touched the top of the scepter.
And the king said to Queen Esther, What troubles you Queen Esther? What is your request? Even to half the kingdom shall be granted to you.
And Esther said, If it seems good to the king, let the king and Haman come this day to the banquet that I have prepared for him.
And the king commanded, Cause Haman to make haste to do as Queen Esther has said. So the king and Haman came to the banquet that Esther had prepared.
And the king said to Queen Esther at the banquet of wine, What is your petition, and it shall be granted to you, and what is your request? Even to half the kingdom shall it be performed.
And Esther said, My petition and my request is, if I have found favor in the sight of the king, and if it please the king to grant my petition, and perform my request, let the king and Haman come to the banquet that I will prepare, and I will do tomorrow as the king has said.
So Haman left and he was as happy as a little kid with his first ice cream cone. But when Haman saw Mordecai at the king’s gate, and Mordecai would not stand up for him, or even acknowledge him, Haman hated Mordecai even more.
And Haman arrived home and called all his friends, and his wife Zeresh and told them how wonderful he is, and boasted of his great wealth, and the large number of children he has, and the promotion he received from the king, and how he was above all the princes and servants of the king. And Esther the Queen did not allow anyone else at her banquet that she prepared but myself and the king. And tomorrow I am invited by her along with the king.
Poor jerk Haman doesn’t know that Queen Esther is Jewish, and she knows his evil.
And Haman said, All this avails nothing to me as long as I see Mordecai The Jew sitting in the king’s gate.
Then Zeresh his wife, and all his friends said to him, Let gallows be made of eighty feet high, and tomorrow speak to the king that Mordecai be hanged on it. Then go happily with the king to the banquet.
That night, however, the king couldn’t sleep. Again The LORD was at work. And the king commanded that The Book of Records of The Chronicles be brought to him. And they were read before the king.
And it was found written that Mordecai had told of the two who sought to kill the king Ahasuerus. And the king said, What honor and dignity have been done to Mordecai for this? And they said, Nothing has been done for him.
And the king said, who is in the court? Now Haman had come to the court to speak to the king about hanging Mordecai on gallows eighty feet high that Haman had prepared.
Haman stands in the court, the king’s servants said. Let him come in, the king said. And here comes Haman, happy as can be. And the king said to Haman, What shall be done to the man whom the king delights to honor?
And Haman, thinking he is the man, happily said, For the man whom the king delights to honor, let the royal apparel be brought that the king wears, and the horse that the king rides on, and the royal crown that is set on the king’s head, and let the royal apparel and the horse be delivered by the hand of one of the king’s most noble princes that they may clothe the man whom the king delights to honor.
And bring him on horseback through the street of the city and proclaim before him, Thus shall be done to the man whom the king delights to honor.
Good, the king said. Hurry, and take the apparel and the horse just as you have said and so do to Mordecai The Jew who sits at the king’s gate. And do not omit a single detail of all you have suggested.
Oy vay, Haman must have thought. Oy gehvalt, I’m a dead man. Perhaps not in Yiddish.
So Haman took the king’s apparel and his horse and arrayed Mordecai in the king’s clothing, and brought him on horseback through the street of the city, and cried before him, probably not so loud, Thus shall be done to the man whom the king delights to honor.
And Mordecai came to the king’s gate, but Haman ran home, his head covered in mourning. And Haman told his wife Zeresh, and all his friends everything that had befallen him. And the wise men and Zeresh his wife said to him, If Mordecai is a descendant of The Jews, before whom you have begun to fall, you shall not prevail against him, but you will surely fall before him.
And while they were yet talking, the king’s men came and rushed Haman off to the banquet that Esther the Queen had prepared. So the king and Haman came to the banquet with Queen Esther. And the king said to Esther, What is your petition Queen Esther? And it shall be granted to you. And what is your request? And it shall be performed even to half the kingdom.
Then Queen Esther answered, and said, If I have found favor in your sight O king, and if it please the king, let my life be granted me as my wish, and my People as my request. For we have been sold, my People and I to be destroyed, massacred, and slaughtered. Had we only been sold as bondmen and bondwomen I would have kept silent, for the enemy is not worthy of the king’s trouble.
And the king asked Esther, Who is he? And where is he that presumes in his heart to do such a thing? And Esther said, The enemy and the adversary is this wicked Haman. And Haman became terrified before the king and his Queen.
And the king rose up from the banquet of wine in wrath and went into the palace garden. And Haman the creep, stood up and begged Queen Esther for his life. For he saw that the king had determined evil against him.
And the king returned only to see the creep Haman fallen on the sofa where Esther was sitting. And the king said, Will he force himself on The Queen also before me in my house? And as the word went out of the king’s mouth, they covered Haman’s face, and hung him on the gallows that Haman prepared for Mordecai. And the king’s wrath was pacified.
So on that day, the king Ahasuerus gave the house of Haman, the enemy of The Jews, to Esther the Queen. And Mordecai came before the king, for Esther had told the king that Mordecai was her uncle. And the king took off his ring that he had given to Haman and gave it to Mordecai. And Esther placed Mordecai over the house of Haman.
And Esther fell on her knees in tears before the king and begged him to prevent the slaughter of her Jewish People. And the king said to Queen Esther and Mordecai, I have given Esther the house of Haman, and they have hanged him on the gallows because he sought to kill The Jews. But the writing that has been sealed by the king can not be reversed.
But let it be written to The Jews that the king has granted The Jews in every city to gather themselves together, and stand and fight for their lives. To destroy and kill and cause to perish all who assault The Jews on the thirteenth day of the twelfth month which is the Hebrew month Adar. And let The Jews plunder their enemies.
And a copy of the writing of the king’s commandment was sent to every province, and was published to all people that The Jews should stand and fight for their lives on that day, and retaliate against their enemies.
And on the thirteenth day of the Hebrew Month Adar, The Jews killed all who set out to kill them. And no one could withstand them for the fear of The Jews fell upon all the peoples.
And many of the people in the Empire became Jewish.
And the rulers of the provinces, and the lieutenants, and the deputies, and officers of the king helped The Jews because the fear of Mordecai fell upon them. For Mordecai was great in the king’s house, and his fame went throughout the kingdom.
So The Jews killed all their enemies with the sword, and killed those who hated them. And in Shushan, The Jews killed five hundred men. And they killed Haman’s ten sons. But they took none of their goods. And on the fourteenth day of the Hebrew Month Adar, The Jews killed another three hundred in Shushan who set out to kill them.
And in the other provinces of the kingdom, The Jews stood for their lives and killed another seventy five thousand, but they took none of their goods.
And on the thirteenth and fourteenth days of the Hebrew Month Adar, The Jews rested from their enemies, and The Threat of Death Turned to Joy, and From Mourning To A Good Day. Barukh Ha Shem Adonai Yeshua, Blessed is The Name of The Lord Yeshua.
And they made it a time of feasting and gladness. Therefore The Jewish People call these days Purim on the fourteenth and fifteenth days of The Hebrew Month Adar. This year this past Thursday the 25th of February at sundown to Friday the 26th of February at sundown, a day of feasting and gladness.
And Esther The Queen, and Mordecai The Jew wrote a second letter confirming that these days of Purim shall never cease among The Jewish People, and the memory of Purim shall never perish among their descendants.
BARUKH ADONAY ELOHAYNU YESHUA HAMASHIAKH,
BLESSED IS THE LORD OUR GOD YESHUA THE MESSIAH.