Reading: Esther 7-10
Summary: Though Haman is dead, the decree authorized by the king for the mass slaughter of the Jews is still in place. Mordecai and Esther move quickly by the king’s authority to authorize their people to defend themselves against their enemies on the fated day set by Haman. Exactly the opposite result that Haman planned unfolds as the Jewish people successfully defend themselves.
The Transforming Power of Hope
Dread and fear debilitate, hope and opportunity invigorate.
You’ve experienced it haven’t you? The threat of harm or oppression causes a dark cloud to shroud your thoughts and feelings. You are beaten down and defeated long before anything actually happens. Suddenly a ray of hope appears. There is a chance; an opportunity to overcome and emerge victorious. Again, before anything actually, happens your disposition has been changed completely. The dark cloud is gone. Hope and possibility replace dread and woe.
Under Haman’s threat, the Jews were “fasting, weeping, and lamenting” (Esth. 4:3). Given the opportunity to defend themselves they had “light and gladness and joy and honor” (Esth. 8:16). Again, nothing had actually yet happened, but hope and opportunity changed everything.
Is this not precisely what God provides; hope and opportunity? That changes everything, even before God has done anything.