Tonight, 02/28/2018, begins the Jewish festival of Purim, which commemorates God’s work in the life of Queen Esther in His plan to preserve the Hebrew people from annihilation.
As the story goes forward, a man named Haman is promoted to the role of Prime Minister. Haman is an interesting character. He was very proud of the position that he had and through his influence with the king, he was able to have the king issue a law that said everyone must bow when he rode by. Talk about ego! Well, all was fine and dandy until someone noticed that Mordecai, a leader in the Jewish community, refused to bow. Haman was outraged and decided that he had to do something to take revenge on Mordecai. Here’s where his pride and bietterness explodes – in his drive to get back at Mordecai, Haman decides to have all of the Jews killed. He goes to the king and offers to give the government treasury 10,000 talents of silver if the king agreed to have the Jews killed. I wasn’t sure how much money that was, so I checked. 10,000 talents equals roughly 340 metric tons. There are 32,150.7466 troy ounces in a metric ton. The price of silver was $16.71/troy oz. (02/28/2018) when I checked the market while writing this. So added all up the bribe that Haman was offering to the king was $182,661,252. He was willing to pay almost $183 million to insure that one man was killed, simply because of that man’s unwillingness to give him the respect he thought he deserved! Wow!
You probably know the rest of the story – Haman’s plot is foiled because Esther uses the position that God allowed her to be in, and the Jews are saved. Haman is executed and Mordecai is elevated to the place of Prime Minister, even receiving all of Haman’s money and property in the end.
The point to this – don’t forget what set the story in motion – a root of bitterness and pride. May we all guard our hearts against these enemies that craftily seek to destroy us and our fellowship with each other and our relationship with Christ! Let’s seek to serve and put the needs of others ahead of our own!