September 13

Esther 6:1-3 1That night the king could not sleep; so he ordered the book of the chronicles, the record of his reign, to be brought in and read to him. 2It was found recorded there that Mordecai had exposed Bigthana and Teresh, two of the king's officers who guarded the doorway, who had conspired to assassinate King Xerxes. 3"What honor and recognition has Mordecai received for this?" the king asked. "Nothing has been done for him," his attendants answered.

The queen took the chance and entered to speak to the king. He extended his scepter, which meant she could have an audience and not die. Instead of telling all, she asked the king and Haman (see September 12) to a banquet. As Haman left he saw Mordecai in sackcloth, still refusing to bow to him. Haman asked his relatives what to do, and they suggested a building a gallow and asking for the king's permission to hang Mordecai on it.

The hand of providence intervened that night in the form of insomnia. Nothing is so boring as the official records, so the king decided to read those. He came across the record of Mordecai uncovering a plot on the king's life. What a coincidence! Haman was in the courtyard waiting for the king to get up. The king called him in and asked for suggestions as to what to do for the man the king honors. Haman thought he was the one about whom the king was speaking, so he suggested an elaborate procession with the highest official leading it. Haman ended up leading Mordecai through the streets. The Jews knew now that the God of Israel was helping Mordecai and that Haman was ruined.

The next day Haman was brought to the banquet and his plans were exposed. The king was very upset, but when the king returned and saw him on the queen's couch pleading for his life, he was furious and had Haman hung on the gallows Haman intended for Mordecai. Since the former edict to attack the Jews couldn't be rescinded, the king issued a new edict saying the Jews could defend themselves. The day they were to be attacked, they attacked their enemies. Because Mordacai was now the highest official, many of the leaders sided with the Jews. In this way the holiday of Purim was established.

Did Mordacai then have anyone criticize his decision to have Esther become queen? Can anyone doubt the hand of God through it all, preserving His people and bringing His will to pass?

Consider: The same amazing hand of God is at work in your life to bring about His purposes for your good!