Esther: A Great Woman Essay, Research Paper
By the ?accident? of her beauty and the ?accident? of the former queen?s dismissal, Esther found herself queen of one of the largest powers in the entire world. Then, when all seemed to be going fairly well, her crucial moment to stand for what she believed in came. This is the story of Esther.
King Xerxes ruled over many provinces stretching from India to Cush. He owned huge amounts of gold and silver riches and a palace of great size. Three years into his reign, he gave a banquet for the officials and nobles of the land. After the one hundred and eighty day celebration, King Xerxes threw another party for everyone in the citadel of Susa to display his many riches. During this time, King Xerxes?s wife was giving a banquet for the women in the royal palace of King Xerxes. Queen Vashti was a very beautiful woman, and the king wanted to show her off to his many guests. The message came to her, but she refused to see him. King Xerxes became very furious and sent out a decree that stated, ?Vashti is never again to enter the presence of King Xerxes.? (Esther 1:19) He then decided to find a beautiful young virgin to take her place. Esther, niece of Mordecai, was brought to the king?s presence under the decree. Esther was soon chosen and was immediately given beauty treatments and fancy food. After completely the twelve-month beauty treatment, she became queen instead of Vashti. During this time Esther kept her family background and nationality a secret, just as Mordecai had instructed her to do.
Following this event, Mordecai overheard two men plotting to kill King Xerxes. He soon told the king, but Haman received all the credit and was given a high place in the court. When asked to bow to Haman, Mordecai refused and stated that he was a Jew. Haman soon became very mad. He then talked King Xerxes into the idea of killing all the Jews in the land. Mordecai sent word to Esther, begging her to save her people by talking to King Xerxes. She then went to the king and asked to throw a banquet in honor of Haman. The night after the banquet, King Xerxes could not sleep. He called for the book of chronicles and found that Haman was not responsible for revealing the plot against him. It was Mordecai. Haman was then hanged. After the death of Haman, Esther told King Xerxes of her heritage and he soon removed the decree of the death of all Jews.
The Jews soon became powerful people and triumphed over the people who planned to kill them. After many deaths of the enemies of the Jews, Esther then requested that Haman?s ten sons to be hanged. The fourteenth and fifteenth days of the month of Adar was set aside as the time when the Jews got relief from this enemies. Today this is called the day of Purim.
Esther was a very brave woman, and she stood in times of hardship for her people, the Jews. This is shown in this heroic statement: ?I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish.? (Esther 4:16) This is a very strong thing for Esther. But at the beginning, though, she was a very shy and timid girl. She went against God by not telling her background, the Jews. This is a downfall. Another is that she was married to a pagan king and became a part of his harem.
The lessons learned in this story are that God loved the chosen people and did all he could to help them. This is showed very indirectly throughout the story. Also, it tells us not to hide that we are people of God, but proclaim it for all to see and hear.