15 Nov. Esther 3:1-13

15 Nov. Haman plans to exterminate the Jewish exiles

“After these things happened, King Xerxes honoured Haman son of Hemmedatha the Agagite. He gave him a new rank that was higher than all the important men. All the royal officers at the king’s gate would bow down and kneel before Haman, as the king had ordered. But Mordecai would not bow down or show him honour.”

“Then the royal officers at the king’s gate asked Mordecai, ‘Why don’t you obey the king’s command?’ And they said this to him every day. When he did not listen to them, they told Haman about it. They wanted to see if Haman would accept Mordecai’s behaviour because Mordecai had told them he was Jewish.”

“When Haman saw that Mordecai would not bow down to him or honour him, he became very angry. He thought of himself as too important to try to kill only Mordecai. He had been told who the people of Mordecai were, so he looked for a way to destroy all of Mordecai’s people, the Jews, in all of Xerxes’ kingdom.”

“It was in the first month of the twelfth year of King Xerxes’ rule – the month of Nisan. Pur (that is, the lot) was thrown before Haman to choose a day and a month. So the twelfth month, the month of Adar, was chosen.”

“Then Haman said to King Xerxes, ‘There is a certain group of people scattered among the other people in all the areas of your kingdom. Their customs are different from those of all the other people, and they do not obey the king’s laws. It is not right for you to allow them to continue living in your kingdom. If it pleases the king, let an order be given to destroy those people. Then I will pay 350 tonnes of silver to those who do the king’s business, and they will put it into the royal treasury.’”

“So the king took his signet ring off and gave it to Haman son of Hammedatha, the Agagite, the enemy of the Jewish people. Then the king said to Haman, ‘The money and the people are yours. Do with them as you please.’”

“On the thirteenth day of the first month, the royal secretaries were called, and they wrote out all of Haman’s orders… They were written in the name of King Xerxes and sealed with his signet ring. Letters were sent by messengers to all the king’s empire ordering them to destroy, kill and completely wipe out all the Jewish people. That meant young and old, women and little children too. It was to happen on a single day – the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which was Adar. And they could take everything the Jewish people owned.”

          (Esther 3:1-13)

 

 

Sometime later, Xerxes promoted Haman to be his chief counsellor. Haman, an Agagite, was a descendant of the Amalekites, a traditional enemy of the people of Judah.

All the royal officers were commanded to bow down and kneel before Haman, but Mordecai – as a Jew who worshipped only the one true God – refused to bow down and honour Haman.

To gain his revenge on Mordecai and his people, Haman devised a plan to exterminate all the Jews throughout Persia and to confiscate their possessions. He decided the day on which this should happen by throwing lots or ‘purim’.

Xerxes (who didn't know anything about his wife Esther's Jewish origins) agreed to Haman’s proposal, and gave him his signet ring so the orders to carry out Haman’s plan would bear the authority of the king.

The photo (by Darafsh) shows an impression of Xerxes I at the National Museum of Iran.

You can read more @ https://www.thebiblejourney.org/biblejourney2/35-the-exiles-return-to-judah/mordecai-uncovers-a-plot-to-kill-the-king/


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