At the end of this month, the Jewish people will celebrate a fun festival called Purim. The word Purim means “lots”. Haman, the bad guy, casted lots to determine the day in which all the Jews of the land would be destroyed. This happened centuries before Christ in the Persian period. The story is found in the book of Esther. I encourage you to read it. Talk about a great story! As you read through, take note that there are 3 certainties found in the story that are standard characteristics of the Jewish people in their history. These certainties are also present day realities to all of us, who love and follow the Lord Jesus Christ.
1. The first certainty is Persecution. Haman wanted to destroy the Jews. Many bad guys throughout history have tried…Pharaoh of Egypt, Nebuchadnezzar, and Hitler, to name a few… But, it is impossible. Read Jeremiah 31:35-37.
Our present reality, as believers, is that we will also suffer persecution and the world will hate us (II Timothy 3:12 and I John 3:13).
2. Providence is the second certainty. Esther, a Jewish girl, became Queen of Persia, “For such a time as this”. She was chosen to be in a unique position to help save her people and enable her uncle, Mordecai, to be placed in high position so that he can help care for his people. Providence is “the Hand of God in the Glove of history”. He was in control all along.
Our present reality, as believers, is that God is still in control. “All things work together for good to them that love God…” Romans 8:28
You are where you are, “For such a time as this”. He can use you for His glory in whatever situation he has put you in.
3. Preservation (Protection) is the third certainty. To His people, Israel, God is faithful to His promise that they will never be extinct from the earth.
“ blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore; Genesis 22:17. God cares about His people and He protects them. “Behold, He who keeps Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.” Psalm 121:4
Our present reality, as believers, is that we are protected in Christ Jesus as found in Romans 8:35-39
“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? … For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
The Gospel can be illustrated by Esther’s actions.
Esther was under the decree of death. – We are all under the decree of death because of sin, Romans 3:23 and Romans 6:23.
Esther feared the king because he had the power of life and death. – We are to fear God who has power to destroy both soul and body in hell, Matthew 10:28.
Esther approached the king and was received. – We can come freely to the Lord Jesus and he will never cast us out, but will raise us at the last day, John 6:37, 40.
We can all be encouraged by Esther’s example. She was a beautiful woman, who had the courage, with God’s help, to do what needed to be done, for such a time as this!
The main points in this post were taken from a sermon given by my husband, Peter Colon.