The book of esther takes place in susa modern day iran in the court of a persian king, xerxes or ahasuerus. We learn that esther was an orphan who had been taken by her cousin as a daughter and was being raised as his ward. It also opened the way for the establishment of later holidays that, like purim, could be instituted without divine command if they commemorated an important event or served an important function in the life of the jewish people. Book of esther overview insight for living ministries. T he story of esther reads like a novel and is full of great spiritual lessons. The writer of esther clearly intended the book to explain the origin of the celebration of purim, to institutionalize it as a commemoration of the great deliverance of the jews during the persian period see note on esther 9. As a supposed descendant of the destroyer nebuchadnezzar ii of the first temple. Esther reveals more about jewish, identity during the babylon captivi. Book of esther, in the hebrew bible and the christian old testament. It relates the story of a hebrew woman in persia, born as hadassah but known as esther, who becomes queen of persia and thwarts a genocide. This has led some modern scholars to claim that the book was originally intended as a purely secular history. Because of hamans status, everyone had to bow down to him when he came. In fact, god is not directly mentioned by name in the book of esther. The old testament contains 34 books and the new testament contains 27 books.
The unique feature of the book of esther is that it is the only book in the prophets and writings that takes place completely outside of israel. Esther accepted mordechais rebuke, but she insisted that the jews fast for three days before she went in to see the king. What is the significance of the book of esther in the. The book of esther would also encourage them to worship the god of israel, though he is not mentioned by name in it ibid. All other books of the bible make it obvious who and what is influencing the actions of the characters, namely. The book of ester is a very special book in the bible, so here are 11 important bible verses from the book of esther. The story gives us six powerful lessons about courage. This summary of the book of esther provides information about the title, authors, date of writing, chronology, theme, theology, outline, a brief overview, and the chapters of the book of esther. Childs notes the typology which the writer uses in identifying haman and mordecai through genealogies when he writes, haman, the enemy of the jews, is portrayed as the son of hammedatha, the agagite 3. Like the book of jonah, the book of ruth, a masterpiece of storytelling, has a moral lesson, but this lesson may not be the chief reason why the book was written. Mordicai was queen esthers cousin and also the gate keeper of king ahasuerus. This was during a time just before the wall of jerusalem was rebuilt.
For this deed of the queen shall come abroad unto all women, so that they shall despise their husbands in their eyes, when it shall be. The book of esther in the bible is a dramatic account which can give us insight into gods special and purposeful plan for our lives. Adopted and raised by her cousin mordecai, esther, whose name is derived from the persian stara, star, plays a crucial role in the event of persecution and deliverance of the jews in the ancient persian empire that the late biblical book or scroll of esther. The book of esther is one of only two books in the bible named for women. Having ezra in the story also emphasizes the importance of god, whereas in the book of esther, no mention of god is made.
The book of esther intrigues positively, too, one reason being its containing rationale for the celebration of the feast of purim, the popularity of which can be accounted for in part by the fact that it constitutes the only worldly holiday in the jewish calendar for the expression of the light. In the biblical book of esther, vashti is the wife of king ahasuerus, the ruler of persia. The book of esther tells the story of the church of god, christ, god almighty and the millennial reign of the kingdom of. Read 4 important principles you need to learn from the book of esther by ron edmondson on christian blogs.
Esthers early years are distinguished by passivity and pliancy. Jews celebrate the survival of their people with great merriment. What is the importance of the book of esther in the bible. Why doesnt the book of esther directly mention god.
When vashti was dismissed from being queen, the king xerxes chose esther to the place on account of her beauty, not knowing her race or parentage. Jun 18, 2019 the book of esther is one of only two books in the bible named for women. Esther is one of only two books of the bible named after a woman. For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the jews from another place, but you and your fathers house will perish. She is introduced to the reader incidentally to the identification of mordecai, as an object of his action. The events in the book of esther probably took place around 521495 bc. The book of esther never mentions god by name, there is never the word prayer uttered, and the only spiritual discipline that is mentioned is fasting but that never says anything about prayer and fasting. This story seems to have been known in several different versions, or to have gone through a number of different stages in its development before it. People sent gifts of food to their neighbors, give cha. Ezra was the scribe and priest who led a remnant of the jewish captives back to jerusalem, but this would come twenty years later, under the reign of king artaxerxes, in 457 b. The book of esther was written during a time when the persian empire ruled the world and ahasuerus probably xerxes i was the king of persia. Although we do not know who wrote the book of esther, from internal evidence it is possible to make some inferences about the author.
Introduction how should we view the women in esther. This unlikely contestant for a beauty pageant was crowned queen of persia and renamed esther, meaning star. The book of esther is a 20 movie starring jen lilley as queen esther and joel smallbone as king xerxes. This book is also the reason why the jewish people created the jewish festivity of purim, which is celebrated annually amongst all jewish people in. The views of modern scholars are significant in so far as the views of modern scholars are significant in any topic an encyclopedia should endeavour to. Book of esther bible survey why doesnt the book of esther mention god. The book of esther is one of only two books in the hebrew bible that never mention god the other is the song of songs. The book of esther is not a historical document in the usual sensebut that doesnt undermine its importance as a religious book in the jewish canon. The book of esther, though divinely inspired scripture, doesnt mention god by any name or title. Did esther have sex with xerxes before they were married. And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this. Jews have traditionally considered esther a national hero, but already early in the twentieth century some readers began to deplore her as passive and devious. It is a story about a hebrew woman named naomi who lives during the period of the judges, prior to the establishment of the monarchy.
What was the importance of esther in the bible answers. The heroine of the book named for her, esther is a young jewish woman living in exile in the persian lit. In the story of esther, youll meet a beautiful, young queen who risked her life to serve god and save her people. An ordinary woman who god raised up to be a persian queen for a purpose she never. Haman was an official whom the king had appointed to be over all of the other princes in the medopersian kingdom. Unlike daniel, there seems to be no concern on the part of esther to keep the dietary laws. The jewish community, and its areas of residence, outside erez israel. Esther bible study chapter 5 prayer and the power of the. The book of esther is one of the books of old testament. Introduction esther was a jew from the tribe of benjamin who grew up as an exile in persia.
Waldman and appeared in volume one of the graphic canon, edited by russ kick and published by seven stories press. The events in the book of esther occurred from 483. This book is also the reason why the jewish people created the jewish festivity of purim, which is celebrated annually amongst all jewish people in the world. The book of esther 6 powerful life lessons from the bible. The book of esther is a very realistic commentary on life, and it is possible that its author wanted to make his readers ponder carefully gods involvement in it. Esther is encouraged by mordicai to conceal her jewishness. He may not always do it in the way we think he should, but the book of esther shows that he is in control even when we dont see him. Jonah, ruth, and esther cliffsnotes study guides book. In 2012, a graphic adaptation of the book of esther was illustrated by j. The book of esther, also known in hebrew as the scroll megillah, is a book in the third section ketuvim, writings of the jewish tanakh the hebrew bible and in the christian old testament. Of course, thats not the only reason to study themalthough god clearly means for us both men and women to pay attention to the crucial role of women in the big story of redemption. The author of the book of esther is unknown, though some attribute the work to mordecai.
Her story is recorded in the old testament book bearing her name. The rest of the chapters of esther is a significant portion of scripture in the septuagint, being six entire chapters of collected texts of the book of esther 10. Why did queen vashti refuse to appear before xerxes. Its one of the most beautiful books in the bible and so full of great takeaways for the modern christian woman today. Nov 28, 2019 the book of ester is a very special book in the bible, so here are 11 important bible verses from the book of esther. The book of esther also talks about the jewish festival of purim. Esther chapter 3 there are two main people in this chapter of the book of esther, mordicai and haman. The book of esther is renowned for its literary artistry, which functions as the principal vehicle for the books. The book is named for the star of the story, a young jewish girl named hadassah who was taken from her guardian, mordecai, and forced to compete for the affection of the king.
The jewish feast of purim celebrates this particular deliverance of the jews. The name esther means star and is a derivation of the root name of the goddess ishtar. Why is the book of esther so important and what is its. Esther bible story summary what christians want to know. Jul 16, 2015 the book of esther tells the story of the salvation of jewish community in persia, and begins with esther, the cousin and adopted daughter of mordecai the jew, becoming xerxes new wife. Bible studies in the book of esther esther chapter 5. The traditional view of the book of esther is significant to mention, because it is the traditional view held by millions of believers over several millennia as to the nature of the book. The book of esther is renowned for its literary artistry, which functions as the principal vehicle for the book s religious meaning. It belongs to the third section of the judaic canon, known as the ketuvim, or writings, and also appears in the protestant canon and in the roman catholic canon.
For traditional jewish commentators, the absence of gods name did not mean that god was absent from the book. The book of esther tells the story of the salvation of jewish community in persia, and begins with esther, the cousin and adopted daughter of mordecai the jew, becoming xerxes new wife. Esther, for the chance of winning wealth and power, takes her place in the herd of maidens who become concubines of the king. In fact, the book of esther, more than anything else, is responsible for the continued celebration of purim.
H ere are 5 important lessons that i learned from the book of esther silence doesnt mean its not there. Since the fast would begin that very day, the thirteenth of nisan, it would continue through the festival of pesach, a day when fasting is halachically forbidden and when we are required to fulfill the commandment of eating. This and other important lessons you need to learn from the book of esther. We saw in the last study that queen esther had, after some initial resistance, obeyed mordecai and made the decision to go to the king without being summoned. Theologically, the book of esther is unimportant, as it never even mentions god. Indeed, there is no direct reference to god at all. Overview of the book of esther third millennium ministries.
What is the importance of the book of esther, and why is. It purports to explain how the feast of purim came to be celebrated by the jews. Jan 02, 2020 book of esther bible survey why doesnt the book of esther mention god. God does have a special plan for your lifebut sometimes it will go against common sense. We are shown a persian emperor, ahasuerus loosely based on xerxes, 485464 b. Esther then ask the jews to fast about this for three days and three nights esther 4. The lord is not mentioned once in this book of the bible, and the only jewish religious practice talked about is fasting. Esther is the jewish maiden who became queen of persia and rescued her people from a murderous plot to annihilate them. Historically it is also unimportant because scholars say that it contains so many historical errors that it can. It is one of the five scrolls megillot in the hebrew bible.
Listen to this description in the five megilloth, a jewish commentary published by the soncino press. Book of esther essaysthe bible is divided into two parts namely old testament and new testament. It is a tightly woven and detailed narrative that focuses on the actions and roles of its characters. It is a blueprint of the dangers jews face when in exile, at the hands and mercy of nonjewish rulers. Jun 24, 2014 this article is part of the why study the book. The lesson here is that gods timing is always immaculate and the book of esther reminds the reader of this and esthers place on the throne at this exact time would save the jews from extermination. The festival of purim celebrates a major victory over opposing and is recounted in the book of esther. The book of esther tells a story of the deliverance of the jewish people.963 275 37 997 361 1170 948 1071 484 1130 515 226 1463 1548 519 1539 551 1066 767 1528 22 1425 936 962 1271 830 1145 331 766 1313 950 1315 1091 27 1382 795