Esther - Page 7

Esther 4:3
officers, the governors of the respective provinces, and the nobles of
each province in their own scripts and languages. The decree was writ­
ten in the name of King Xer­xes and sealed with the king’s signet ring.
13 Dispatches were sent by swift messengers into all the provinces of the
empire, giving the order that all J­ ews—young and old, including women
and children—must be killed, slaughtered, and annihilated on a single
day. This was scheduled to happen on March 7 of the next year.* The
property of the J­ ews would be given to those who killed them.
Haman’s Letter
This is a copy of Haman’s letter:
“This letter is from the great King Xerxes to the governors of his 127
provinces from India to Ethiopia and to the officials under them.*
2 “I rule over many nations and have brought all the world under
my dominion, but in spite of my power, I have not grown arrogant.
Instead, I choose to govern my subjects with fairness and kindness
so that they may live quietly without any fear. Then they can travel
safely throughout the kingdom and enjoy peace, as all people desire.
3 “When I asked my advisers how this might be accomplished,
I received excellent counsel from Haman. He is a wise, kind, and
faithful leader who is second in command of my kingdom. 4 He
told me that there is a hostile race of people scattered among all
the nations and that the laws of these people are contrary to those
of all nations. They despise the commands of kings and disrupt our
attempt to unify our kingdom. 5 This group constantly opposes all
humanity by following strange lifestyles and laws, going against our
commands, and disturbing the peace and unity of all our provinces.
6 Therefore, we have decreed that everyone must follow the
instructions given by Haman, who is in charge of the government
and second in power only to the king, for we honor Haman as a
second father to us. All members of this race he has identified are to
be completely destroyed by their enemies, together with their wives
and children, and no one is to have pity on them. This is to happen
next spring on March 8.* 7 So in a single day, all these people who
have been hostile for so long come to a violent end,* and we will
restore to our empire the peace they have disturbed.”
The King’s Decree Is Published
(continued) 14 A copy of this decree was to be issued as law in ­every
province and proclaimed to all peoples, so that they would be ready
to do their duty on the appointed day. 15 At the king’s command, the
decree went out by swift messengers, and it was also proclaimed in the
fortress of Susa. Then the king and Haman sat down to drink, but the city
of Susa fell into confusion.
Mordecai Requests Esther’s Help
When Mor­de­cai learned about all that had been done, he tore his
clothes, put on burlap and ashes, and went out into the city, crying
with a loud and bitter wail. 2 He went as far as the gate of the palace, for
no one was allowed to enter the palace gate while wearing clothes of
mourning. 3 And as news of the king’s decree reached all the provinces,
3:13 Hebrew on the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, the month of Adar, of the ancient Hebrew
lunar calendar. The date selected was March 7, 473 b.c.; also see note on 2:16. B:1 See note at
B:6 Greek On the fourteenth day of the twelfth month, Adar, of the ancient Hebrew lunar
calendar. This date was March 8, 473 b.c.; also see note on A:1c. B:7 Greek will go down in
violence to Hades. 
17B-ESTH_Inspire_Catholic_NLT.indd 603
5/2/2018 9:06:10 AM

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