Esther Lesson 1
“The Providence of God”
KEY VERSE:Esther 4:14, “For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place; but thou and thy father’s house shall be destroyed: and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”
THEME:The Deliverance of the Jews from annihilation in the days following the Babylonian Captivity.
DATE:(478-464 B.C.) Esther became Queen in 478 B.C.; She saved her people in 473 B.C.; Book probably written about 450 B.C.
WRITER:Some Think Mordecai, Others think Ezra, And still others think Nehemiah wrote the Book of Esther.
WRITTEN:Very simple in style like Ezra and Nehemiah. Written in Hebrew with some Persian Words. Covers a twelve year period of Jewish History of those who remained in Persia after they were free to go back to the Holy Land.
THE BOOK:Number in Bible – 17th of 66 Books; Number of Chapters – 10; Number of Verses – 166; Number in Order of Writing – 12th
Book of History
PURPOSE: Recorded as a memoir to all the Jews scattered throughout the one hundred twenty-seven countries of the Persian Empire to relate the providence of God in preventing extinction of the Jewish race and to establish the Feast of “Purim” (meaning “lots”). Named so, because lots were cast to determine in which month the Jews were to be destroyed.
I. The Rise of Esther (Chapters 1-2)
1. The Rejection of Vashti (1:2-21)
2. The Selection of Esther (2:1-19)
3. The Detection of Mordecai (2:20-23)
II. The Lies of Haman (Chapters 3-5)
1. The infernal servitude – Haman
2. The Intestinal fortitude – Mordecai
III. The Prize of Faith
1. The Execution of Haman (Chapters 6-8)
2. The Institution of a Feast (Chapters 9-10)
- One of two books named after a Woman – The other is Ruth
- In Ruth we have a Gentile girl marrying a Jew
- In Esther we have a Jewish girl marrying a Gentile
- “Esther” means “Star.” The name of God is not mentioned in the Book of Esther
- Events covered fall between Ezra, chapters Six and Seven
- Sushan, The Palace, was a summer resort of Persian Kings, two hundred miles East of Babylon
- History calls the King, Xerxes – the Bible calls him Ahaserus
- Great numbers of Jews were still living in Persia
- The huge Persian Empire covered one hundred twenty-seven countries
- Persia is now the Nation of Iran
- The Persian King is mentioned one hundred ninety-two times in ten chapters.
- Haman was an Amalekite of the line of Agag (that King Saul was to have slain, but did not).
I. How The Plot Was Formed (Chapters 1-3)
1. The Might of Ahasuerus (1:1-22)
2. The Marriage of Esther (2:1-20)
3. The Ministry of Mordecai (2:21-23)
4. The Malice of Haman (3)
II. How The Plot Was Fought (Chapters 4-5)
1. The Cry of Israel (4:1-3)
2. The Convictions of Mordecai (4:4-14)
3. The Courage of Esther (4:15-5:8)
4. The Confidence of Haman (5:9-14)
III. How The Plot Was Foiled (Chapters 6-10)
1. The Death of Haman
a. He was publicly humiliated (6)
b. He was publicly hanged (7)
2. The Decree of Ahaseurus (8)
3. The Deliverance of Israel (9:1-18)
4. The Day of Purim (9:19-32)
5. The Dignity of Mordecai (10)
MISCELLANEOUS: Esther Is Centered Around Three Feasts:
- The Feast of Ahasuerus (1-2) 2. The Feast of Esther (3-7) 3. The Feast of Purim (8-10)
- Esther was a Jewish orphan.
- Esther’s Jewish name “Hadassah” means “A Myrtle”
- Esther won the “Miss Persia Pageant” and beat out all the other “Finalists”
- Esther’s influence upon her step-son, Artaxerxes, is seen later. He was so kind to Ezra and Nehemiah.
The Jews Are God’s Indestructible People:
- Pharoah – Learned that they could not be Drowned. Exodus 14
- Nebuchadnezzar – learned that they could not be Burned. Daniel 3
- Darius learned that they could not be Eaten. Daniel 6
- Haman learned that they could not be Hanged. Esther 7
CONCLUSION:Hitler and Stalin also learned that the Gas Chambers and Firing Squads would not do away with the Jews.
Dr. Tom Wallace
Simply click the “Take the Quiz” Button to the right. Have your KJV Bible with you, and look up the answers to the questions on the quiz. You can then answer the questions from the Bible, (Open Book Test)