Esther - Page 15

Esther 9:31
permission to do again tomorrow as they have done today, and let the
bodies of Haman’s ten sons be impaled on a pole.”
14 So the king agreed, and the decree was announced in Susa. And
they impaled the bodies of Haman’s ten sons. 15 Then the J­ ews at Susa
gathered together on March 8* and killed 300 more men, and again
they took no plunder.
16 Meanwhile, the other ­Jews throughout the king’s provinces had
gathered together to defend their lives. They gained relief from all their
enemies, killing 75,000 of those who hated them. But they did not take
any plunder. 17 This was done throughout the provinces on March 7, and
on March 8 they rested,* celebrating their victory with a day of feast­
ing and gladness. 18 (The ­Jews at Susa killed their enemies on March 7
and again on March 8, then rested on March 9,* making that their day
of feasting and gladness.) 19 So to this day, rural J­ ews living in remote
villages celebrate an annual festival and holiday on the appointed day
in late winter,* when they rejoice and send gifts of food to each other.
The Festival of Purim
20 ­Mor­de­cai recorded these events and sent letters to the ­Jews near and
far, throughout all the provinces of King Xer­xes, 21 calling on them to
celebrate an annual festival on these two days.* 22 He told them to cele­
brate these days with feasting and gladness and by giving gifts of food
to each other and p
­ res­ents to the poor. This would commemorate a time
when the ­Jews gained relief from their enemies, when their sorrow was
turned into gladness and their mourning into joy.
23 So the J­ ews accepted Mor­de­cai’s proposal and adopted this annual
custom. 24 Haman son of Ham­me­da­tha the Ag­ag­ite, the enemy of the
­Jews, had plotted to crush and destroy them on the date determined
by casting lots (the lots were called purim). 25 But when Esther came
before the king, he issued a decree causing Haman’s evil plot to backfire,
and Haman and his sons were impaled on a sharpened pole. 26 That is
why this celebration is called Pu­rim, because it is the ancient word for
casting lots.
So because of Mor­de­cai’s letter and because of what they had experi­
enced, 27 the ­Jews throughout the realm agreed to inaugurate this tradi­
tion and to pass it on to their descendants and to all who became ­Jews.
They declared they would never fail to celebrate these two prescribed
days at the appointed time each year. 28 These days would be remem­
bered and kept from generation to generation and celebrated by ­every
fam­i­ly throughout the provinces and cities of the empire. This Festival
of Pu­rim would never cease to be celebrated among the J­ ews, nor would
the memory of what happened ever die out among their descendants.
29 Then Queen Esther, the daughter of Ab­ih
­ ail, along with Mor­de­cai
the Jew, wrote another letter putting the queen’s full authority behind
Mor­de­cai’s letter to establish the Festival of Pu­rim. 30 Letters wishing
peace and security were sent to the J­ ews throughout the 127 provinces of
the empire of Xer­xes. 31 These letters established the Festival of P
­ u­rim—
an annual celebration of these days at the appointed time, decreed by
both Mor­de­cai the Jew and Queen Esther. (The people decided to ob­
serve this festival, just as they had decided for themselves and their
9:15 Hebrew the fourteenth day of the month of Adar, of the ancient Hebrew lunar calendar. This
day was March 8, 473 b.c.; also see note on 2:16. 9:17 Hebrew on the thirteenth day of the month
of Adar, and on the fourteenth day they rested. These days were March 7 and 8, 473 b.c.; also see
note on 2:16. 9:18 Hebrew killed their enemies on the thirteenth day and the fourteenth day, and
then rested on the fifteenth day, of the Hebrew month of Adar. 9:19 Hebrew on the fourteenth day
of the month of Adar. This day of the ancient Hebrew lunar calendar occurs in February or March. 
9:21 Hebrew on the fourteenth and fifteenth days of Adar, of the ancient Hebrew lunar calendar. 
17B-ESTH_Inspire_Catholic_NLT.indd 611
5/2/2018 9:06:12 AM

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