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Esther, 3

April 11, 2017

When the king’s anger cooled, he missed Queen Vashti. She had been a lovely addition to his court, and he would never see her again. He became despondent and lonely without her, causing his aides to worry about him.

“Let us go find the most beautiful girls in the kingdom, and bring them to the palace for your pleasure. The eunuchs in charge of the harem will give them beauty treatments. The one who pleases you most will replace Queen Vashti,” they said.

The king smiled at the cleverness of his aides. The suggestion appealed to him and he said, “Put your plan into effect immediately.”

Now there was a Jew working at the palace. He had been captured and exiled to Babylon when Jerusalem was destroyed. Mordecai had adopted his young cousin when her parents died and raised her as his own. Esther was taken to the palace with many other beautiful girls, but Mordecai warned her not to tell anyone she was Jewish. “No one. Never,” he told her, and she obeyed her cousin, a second father.

The eunuch in charge of the harem was impressed by Esther’s beauty and charm. He arranged special beauty treatments, gave her seven maids and a most luxurious apartment. She told no one she was Jewish, and Mordecai came to see her every day to find out what was happening to her.

Upon being taken to the king, the girls were given their choice of clothing and jewels to enhance their beauty. The next morning they were taken to the harem where the king’s wives lived, remaining there the rest of their lives or until they were summoned again. They could not venture to see the king again unless he called for them by name. To do so would result in death.

In the seventh year of the king’s reign, Esther was summoned. Disregarding rich clothing and jewels, she dressed quietly and simply, letting her loveliness shine in her quiet demeanor. The king was greatly impressed. He set the crown upon her head, and he called her his queen, calling for a huge party.

On duty at the palace, Mordecai overheard two of the king’s eunuchs, B and T, plotting to kill the king. He told Esther, and she told the king, giving Mordecai the credit for the information. It proved to be true, and the eunuchs were impaled on poles.

All of this was reported by the scribes in the book of history, The History of King Ahasuerus’ Reign. 

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