The story of Hadassah, better known as Esther, is one of the most fascinating books in the Holy Bible. It is the only book which does not mention God, yet His fingerprints can be found in every word. On the surface, it is the story of a king and a woman, and how she saved her people from destruction by an evil man. On a deeper level, it is a wonderful prophetic foreshadow for the salvation plan of God. It is also the origin of the observance of Purim, which is celebrated on Adar 14 and 15, which is March 23-24, 2016. By exploring this amazing book, we will come to understand the prophetic nature behind both the story of Esther and the holiday of Purim.
Like any biblical story, the Book of Esther has many layers of depth and mystery, and there is not a “one for one” or “this is that” singular comparison or pattern. There are multiple roles that any one character or situation my represent. By understanding certain consistent patterns and themes, we can see how these characters, roles, and situations fit together to paint a beautiful picture.
Due to the necessity of time and length we will have to cut out some sections of this awesome book and skip many possible applications. I would encourage everyone to study it in it’s entirety, as there are many lessons to be learned and deeper meanings to behold. In this article, we will explore each of the major characters and events in The Book of Esther and how their roles symbolize and prophetically foreshadow events that have already occurred, such as Christ’s First Coming, and also events that are yet to occur, such as the Battle of Armageddon.
The story takes place during the reign of King Ahasuerus (Medo-Persian Empire) from 486-465 BCE. Jerusalem and the Temple had been destroyed by the Babylonian Empire in 586 B.C (Jeremiah 25), and the Medo-Persian Empire conquered them in 539 B.C.*
Esther 1:1-4, “Now it took place in the days of Ahasuerus, the Ahasuerus who reigned from India to Ethiopia over 127 provinces, in those days as King Ahasuerus sat on his royal throne which was at the citadel in Susa, in the third year of his reign he gave a banquet for all his princes and attendants, the army officers of Persia and Media, the nobles and the princes of his provinces being in his presence. And he displayed the riches of his royal glory and the splendor of his great majesty for many days, 180 days."
Ahasuerus is the king of the Medo-Persian Empire and ruler of the known world. He is sitting on his throne in Susa, displaying his glory and splendor. In Hebrew “Susa” is “shushan”, which means “white” or “lily” (Strong’s H7797).
In Genesis 32:1 we learn that Sarah, wife of Abraham and mother of Isaac, lived for 127 years. In Genesis 35:29 we learn that Isaac, father of Jacob (Israel) lived for 180 years. In Genesis 21:12, and confirmed in Romans 9:7, we are told of God’s covenant with Abraham, that “…through Isaac your descendants will be named.”
In this introductory paragraph, we see the numeric symbolism of the covenant that God made with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (Israel). God had clearly chosen the line of Abraham and Sarah, through Isaac and Jacob (Israel), in which to fulfill His covenant people and bring about His Messiah, Yeshua/Jesus. Just as King Ahasuerus sits on his throne in the white citadel, so does God sit on His Great White Throne of judgement (Rev 20:11) displaying His splendor and glory through His servant Isaac, son of Abraham and Sarah, and who also is one of the first prototypical Christ’s in the bible.
Esther 1:5-8, “When these days were completed, the king gave a banquet lasting seven days for all the people who were present at the citadel in Susa, from the greatest to the least, in the court of the garden of the king’s palace. There were hangings of fine white and violet linen held by cords of fine purple linen on silver rings and marble columns, and couches of gold and silver on a mosaic pavement of porphyry, marble, mother-of-pearl and precious stones. Drinks were served in golden vessels of various kinds, and the royal wine was plentiful according to the king’s bounty. The drinking was done according to the law, there was no compulsion, for so the king had given orders to each official of his household that he should do according to the desires of each person.”
Ahasuerus’s royal court is adorned with various colors of linen, silver, gold, marble, and precious stones. This description is similar to the Tabernacle in Exodus 26, God’s presence (Exodus 24:10), and the Holy City, the New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:10-27). After the 180 days of displaying his splendor, the king gives a banquet for seven days for all the people, both great and least, to feast on his generous bounty. Seven is the number for completion and perfection.
Through these introductory paragraphs, we can see King Ahasuerus symbolizing God, reigning as sovereign. Ahasuerus is dwelling in his white citadel, displaying his splendor, and generously giving of his bounty. His attendants are drinking from “golden vessels” according to the law and by their own free will. This is symbolic of God, dwelling on His Holy White Throne. Those in God’s presence are partaking of His generous bounty, drinking from the golden vessels of His mercy according to His law, each of their own free will. These first two paragraphs establish the nature of the king symbolizing God, and how He is sovereign over all of His domain.
The Banished Queen
Esther 1:9-12, “Queen Vashti also gave a banquet for the women in the palace which belonged to King Ahasuerus. On the seventh day, when the heart of the king was merry with wine, he commanded Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, Abagtha, Zethar and Carkas, the seven eunuchs who served in the presence of King Ahasuerus, to bring Queen Vashti before the king with her royal crown in order to display her beauty to the people and the princes, for she was beautiful. But Queen Vashti refused to come at the king’s command delivered by the eunuchs. Then the king became very angry and his wrath burned within him.”
Queen Vashti was the King’s first bride, who was given a lofty position and a beautiful crown. On the 7th day, she is called before the king, so he could display her beauty (Vashti is Persian for “beautiful woman”). Again, seven is the number of perfection, and on this day the king wished to show his bride to all the people. However, the queen had her own agenda. She was away from the king, giving her own banquet, and refused to come before the king at his request.
Queen Vashti is symbolic of the children of Israel, who were the first bride of the Lord, but turned away from Him shortly after the reign of King Solomon. After Solomon’s death, the nation of Israel split into the northern House of Israel and southern House of Judah (1 Kings 12). Both Houses chose to follow their own ways into complete and abject idolatry. Despite the Lord’s repeated requests, the Northern House never returned to Him (2 Kings 17:7-23). This is also a prophetic foreshadow of the end of the age/Second Coming, or just before the Millennial Reign of Messiah (7th millennia), as the Church is called to go before the people to display God’s beauty. Unfortunately, we are told that many who claim to know Him will deny Him (Titus 1:16, 1John 1:6, 1John 2:4).
Esther 1:15-17, “According to law, what is to be done with Queen Vashti, because she did not obey the command of King Ahasuerus delivered by the eunuchs?”
By refusing to obey the king, the queen had influenced all of the people. The queen’s blatant disregard for the king and his commands led the king to seek punishment for her. The king asks his seven advisers what should be done.
Esther 1:19, “If it pleases the king, let a royal edict be issued by him and let it be written in the laws of Persia and Media so that it cannot be repealed, that Vashti may no longer come into the presence of King Ahasuerus, and let the king give her royal position to another who is more worthy than she."
Esther 2:2, “Then the king’s attendants, who served him, said, “Let beautiful young virgins be sought for the king.”
King Ahasuraus banishes queen Vashti, and seeks to replace her with another wife. This symbolizes the children of Israel’s rejection of the Lord’s commands. Because of unfaithfulness and failure to obey God, the children of Israel (Vashti) lost their identity and were not allowed to come before God (Ahaseurus) again as a nation. When the northern House of Israel refused to repent, she was “put away” and given a “certificate of divorce” by God (Jeremiah 3:8, Isaiah 50:1, Hosea 2:2). The northern House of Israel was ultimately conquered by the Assyrians and assimilated into the nations, and the southern House of Judah was captured and sent into exile by the Babylonians. Only a remnant of the House of Judah was allowed to return to Jerusalem and rebuild the Temple and reestablish the worship of the Lord. The banishment of Vashti also prophetically foreshadows the end of the age, when many will claim to know Christ, but will find themselves unable to come before the Lord.
As Messiah said:
Matthew 7:21-23, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. “Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ “And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you who practice lawlessness.’”
Yeshua/Jesus also taught this in the parable of the 10 virgins (Matthew 25:1-13), the parable of the talents and minas (Matthew 25:14-30; Luke 19: 11-27), the parable of the wedding feast (Matthew 22:1-14) and it is confirmed by several authors of the New Testament.
The Obedient Teacher
Esther 2:5-6, “Now there was at the citadel in Susa a Jew whose name was Mordecai, the son of Jair, the son of Shimei, the son of Kish, a Benjamite, who had been taken into exile from Jerusalem with the captives who had been exiled with Jeconiah king of Judah, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had exiled.”
To understand the prophetic identity of Mordecai, let us examine his ancestors. Jair means “enlightener” (Strong’s H2971), and has the root “‘owr” which means “to be luminous, light, glorious, set on fire, shine” (Strong’s H215). Shimei means “famous” (Strong’s H8096), root “shama” which means “to hear intelligently, listen, perceive, be obedient” (Strong’s H8085). Kish (root “koshe”) means “to bend” (Strong’s H6983)).
Mordecai is one who enlightens and is made famous by his ability to hear, perceive, and obey the Lord, bending his own will toward the Lord. He symbolizes the remnant from the House of Judah who repented and obeyed the Lord, and returned to Jerusalem and rebuilt the Temple (Ezra 1). He is also a prophetic foreshadow of those at the end of the age who hear the call of the Lord and turn to Him. They will teach God’s commands, follow in obedience, and bend their will toward His. Throughout the story, we see Mordecai standing at the gate of the king. He is symbolic of those righteous teachers and prophets that are loyal to the Lord, such as David, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel, who sit at the Lord’s gate and proclaim Him to the people (Psalm 119:20, Jeremiah 7:2, Jeremiah 36:10, Ezekiel 11:1).
The Tree and Star in which The Father is well pleased
Esther 2:7, “He (Mordecai) was bringing up Hadassah, that is Esther, his uncle’s daughter, for she had no father or mother. Now the young lady was beautiful of form and face, and when her father and her mother died, Mordecai took her as his own daughter.”
“Hadassah” means “myrtle tree” (root “hadac”, Strong’s H1918). This is a prophetic foreshadow of Messiah, as Isaiah speaks of the redemption of the Lord through His everlasting covenant.
Isaiah 55:13, “Instead of the thorn bush the cypress will come up, and instead of the nettle the myrtle will come up, and it will be a memorial to the LORD, for an everlasting sign which will not be cut off.”
Messiah is described as a myrtle tree (mercy and shelter) rising in the place of nettles (judgement). The name “Esther” is of Persian origin, meaning “star,” “great happiness,” or “something that is pleasing or well chosen.” While stars are mentioned several times in scripture, and reference both good and evil, it is clear that the “star” of Esther symbolizes the “bright morning star” that is Yeshua/Jesus.
Revelation 22:16: “I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.”
The Apostle Peter speaks of the morning star as well!
2 Peter 1:19: “So we have the prophetic word made more sure, to which you do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star arises in your hearts."
Messiah is also the star of Jacob that is prophesied by Balaam.
Numbers 24:17: “I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not near; a star shall come forth from Jacob, a scepter shall rise from Israel, and shall crush through the forehead of Moab, and tear down all the sons of Sheth.”
Just as “Esther” means “happiness” and “something that is pleasing or well chosen,” Father God also states that He is “happy and well pleased” in His Son during Yeshua’s baptism in Matthew 3:17, Mark 1:11, and Luke 3:22, and confirms during the transfiguration (Matthew 17:5). Hadassah (Esther) is symbolic of a beautiful tree of shelter, and foreshadows The Shining Star of pure light, Messiah, in whom the Father (God) is well pleased. Both of Esther’s parents, symbolizing the House of Israel and the House of Judah, are dead, but she is being raised up by the obedient teacher Mordecai, who symbolizes “a faithful remnant.”
After Vashti’s banishment, the king calls for many ladies in the land to be brought to him (Esther 2:3-4). Esther is brought into the custody of Hegai, the king’s eunuch in charge of the women, and “….pleased him (Hegai) and found favor with him.” She is given 7 maidens, just like the king’s 7 eunuchs and 7 advisors, and God’s 7 spirits in Revelation 3:1, 4:5, and Isaiah 11:2. Esther is transferred to the best place in the harem (Est 2:9). There she undergoes 12 months of beautification, symbolizing 1 month for each tribe of Israel, with 6 months of oil of myrrh and 6 months of spices and cosmetics.
In Exodus 30:22-33, we learn that the sacred anointing oil that was used to anoint the Ark of the Testimony, the Tent of Meetings, all of the objects in the Holy Place and Holy of Holies, along with Aaron and his sons, is made of myrrh and spices! Throughout all this, Esther is commanded by Mordecai to keep her true identity a secret from those in the palace (Est 2:10). This is symbolic of the way in which Yeshua/Jesus kept His identity as the Messiah secret from those He did not wish to know (Mark 3:12, 8:30, Luke 9:21). By looking at just this brief introduction of Esther, we can see that she is being prepared for something truly special!
Esther 2:15, “Now when the turn of Esther, the daughter of Abihail the uncle of Mordecai who had taken her as his daughter, came to go in to the king, she did not request anything except what Hegai, the king’s eunuch who was in charge of the women, advised. And Esther found favor in the eyes of all who saw her.”
Abihail is the Hebrew word for “father of might/strength/valor/power” (Strong’s H32). So here we see the daughter of the “father of might/strength/valor/power” being called before the king. She did not take what she wanted or what she thought was beautiful, but rather by listening to and obeying the kings servant (Hegai), brought in only what she knew the king desired. This symbolizes Yeshua/Jesus taking before the Father only what God desires.
John 5:30, “I can do nothing on My own initiative. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just, because I do not seek My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me.” and again in John 14:31, “…but so that the world may know that I love the Father, I do exactly as the Father commanded Me…”
Esther 2:16-17, “So Esther was taken to King Ahasuerus to his royal palace in the tenth month which is the month Tebeth, in the seventh year of his reign. And the king loved Esther more than all the women, and she found favor and kindness with him more than all the virgins, so that he set the royal crown on her head and made her queen instead of Vashti.”
Ten is an ordinal number of completion (10 commandments, 10 plagues in Egypt, 10 men in a minyan, etc.) and seven is the number of spiritual completion and perfection. The 10th day of the 7th month (Tishri 10) is the Day of Atonement, Yom Kippur.* Here we see the beautiful myrtle tree and morning star (Esther) taking her rightful place at the right hand of the king. After her anointing, and because of her beauty, faithfulness, and obedience, she is given the royal crown with all it’s privilege and power. Esther is royalty who is not born of royalty. She is of humble birth, raised by common people, who entered the kingdom by being obedient and pleasing to the king. This duality of Esther as both common and royal symbolizes the duality of Yeshua the Messiah as perfectly human and totally divine. Esther is linked to both the obedient people (Mordecai/Jews) and the king, just as Yeshua is our human link to God!
Esther 2:21-23 gives an account of a plot to kill the king by two of his officials. Mordecai hears of this plot, and through queen Esther warns king Ahasuraus, thus saving the kings life.
Esther 3:1-2, “After these events King Ahasuerus promoted Haman, the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, and advanced him and established his authority over all the princes who were with him. And all the king’s servants who were at the king’s gate bowed down and paid homage to Haman; for so the king had commanded concerning him. But Mordecai neither bowed down nor paid homage.”
“Haman” is of Persian origin, and means “magnificent, illustrious.” He is from the lineage of King Agag, the king of the Amalekites, who were descendants of Esau (Amalek was Esau’s grandson), and the eternal enemy of God’s people. During the Exodus, the Amalekites fought against Israel and God promised to “utterly blot out the memory of Amalek from under heaven” (Exodus 17:14), and “have war against Amalek from generation to generation” (Exodus 17:16). In 1 Samuel 15 king Agag was spared by Saul after Saul was specifically commanded by God to destroy him. Agag was eventually killed by the prophet Samuel, but his lineage continued to Haman.
Haman clearly symbolizes the adversary, Satan, who is described in Ezeziel 28:12-19 as “full of wisdom and perfect in beauty,” and covered in precious stones. Although he is fallen, currently he is given temporary power over the earth (John 12:31, 1 John 5:19). Haman, the magnificent illustrious one, was given authority over all the princes, and all the king’s servants were commanded to bow and pay homage to him. However, Mordecai the obedient teacher did not. This symbolizes all of the powers and principalities of this world paying homage to Satan. All except God’s faithful and obedient.
Esther 3:5-6, “When Haman saw that Mordecai neither bowed down nor paid homage to him, Haman was filled with rage. But he disdained to lay hands on Mordecai alone, for they had told him who the people of Mordecai were; therefore Haman sought to destroy all the Jews, the people of Mordecai, who were throughout the whole kingdom of Ahasuerus.”
Haman not only wants to kill Mordecai, but all of his people. This is clearly a prophetic foreshadow of Satan enraged with the children of Israel and the saints.
Revelation 12:17, “So the dragon was enraged with the woman, and went off to make war with the rest of her children, who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus.”
Esther 3:7-11, “In the first month, which is the month Nisan, in the twelfth year of King Ahasuerus, Pur, that is the lot, was cast before Haman from day to day and from month to month, until the twelfth month, that is the month Adar. Then Haman said to King Ahasuerus, “There is a certain people scattered and dispersed among the peoples in all the provinces of your kingdom; their laws are different from those of all other people, and they do not observe the king’s laws, so it is not in the king’s interest to let them remain. “If it is pleasing to the king, let it be decreed that they be destroyed, and I will pay ten thousand talents of silver into the hands of those who carry on the king’s business, to put into the king’s treasuries.” Then the king took his signet ring from his hand and gave it to Haman, the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, the enemy of the Jews. And the king said to Haman, “The silver is yours, and the people also, to do with them as you please.”
Here we see Haman accusing Mordecai’s people (Jews) of not following the laws of the king, which foreshadows another accuser, Satan.
Revelation 12:10, “Then I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God and the authority of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, he who accuses them before our God day and night.”
Haman is given power over all the people by the kings own authority. Because Mordecai will not bow to him, he plan’s to destroy Mordecai’s people (including Esther) by paying ten thousand silver talents to those who will carry out his plan. Who else was killed by a payment of silver? Messiah (Matthew 26:14-16)!
Esther 3:13, “Then the king’s scribes were summoned on the thirteenth day of the first month, and it was written just as Haman commanded to the king’s satraps, to the governors who were over each province, and to the princes of each people, each province according to its script, each people according to its language, being written in the name of King Ahasuerus and sealed with the king’s signet ring. And letters were sent by couriers to all the king’s provinces to destroy, to kill, and to annihilate all the Jews, both young and old, women and children, in one day, the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which is the month Adar, and to seize their possessions as plunder.”
The decree went out on the 13th of Nisan (first month), and the plan was to destroy the Jews on the 13th of Adar (last month). It is critical to note these dates, as they are not random, but prophetic.
Esther 4:1-12 describes the scene immediately after Mordecai and the Jews learn of Haman’s decree. They are clearly upset! Mordecai communicates Haman’s plan to Esther and implores her to go before the king to plead for her people (Esther 4:8). Esther replies: “All the king’s servants and the people of the king’s provinces know that for any man or woman who comes to the king to the inner court who is not summoned, he has but one law, that he be put to death, unless the king holds out to him the golden scepter so that he may live. And I have not been summoned to come to the king for these thirty days.” (Esther 4:11). Mordecai replies: “…Do not imagine that you in the king’s palace can escape any more than all the Jews. “For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place and you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows whether you have not attained royalty for such a time as this?” (Esther 4:13-14).
Esther understands that to come before the king without being summoned means certain death. But her people need her, and Mordecai reminds her that the very reason she attained royalty was for such a time as this! How much is this like the circumstance of Yeshua/Jesus, who faced certain death, but had been born for exactly this reason? To go before the king and plead mercy for His people!
When Esther learns of Haman’s plot to kill her people, she tells Mordecai: “Go, assemble all the Jews who are found in Susa, and fast for me; do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my maidens also will fast in the same way. And thus I will go in to the king, which is not according to the law; and if I perish, I perish” (Esther 4:16).
Esther 5:1, “Now it came about on the third day that Esther put on her royal robes and stood in the inner court of the king’s palace in front of the king’s rooms, and the king was sitting on his royal throne in the throne room, opposite the entrance to the palace.”
Queen Esther fasts and asks her people to fast for her as she prepares to go before the king. She is terrified, for she knows that what she is doing is unheard of and may lead to her death. But her love for her people compels her to action, even if it means her own death. ON THE THIRD DAY, when she is weak with hunger and dehydration and near death, she adorns her royal robes and enters the inner court of the king’s palace to plead for her people.
King Ahasuerus is sitting on his throne in the inner court, opposite the entrance. From the previous description of the court garden (Esther 1:6-8) this clearly symbolizes the Holy of Holies, with God sitting on His Mercy Seat.
The time frame here is critical. It is important to understand that the Hebrew days starts at sundown and lasts until the next sundown. Remember, the decree of Haman went out on Nisan 13, which is the day before the Passover Lamb is sacrificed on the evening of Nisan 14. Approximately 500 years after Haman’s degree went out, the plot to kill Yeshua/Jesus was decreed on Nisan 13 (Mark 14:1). He was crucified on the afternoon of Nisan 14 as the perfect Sacrificial Lamb of God.
On the third day after Haman’s decree went out would be Nisan 15 (Nisan 13-14-15), which is the first day of Unleavened Bread (Leviticus 23:6)! Unleavened Bread is the day on which all leaven is removed from a persons household, representing the removal of sin from one’s life. On this day Esther went before her king to remove the decree of death from her people. Yeshua/Jesus was buried on Nisan 15 (Unleavened Bread) and removed sin from the world by His ultimate sacrifice!
Here we see a prophetic foreshadow of Messiah, having been crucified and buried as the perfect atoning Sacrificial Lamb of God, now standing before The Almighty King. Just as Esther went before her king to plead for her people, Yeshua the Messiah went before The King to plead for His people!
Esther 5:2-4, “And it happened when the king saw Esther the queen standing in the court, she obtained favor in his sight; and the king extended to Esther the golden scepter which was in his hand. So Esther came near and touched the top of the scepter. Then the king said to her, “What is troubling you, Queen Esther? And what is your request? Even to half of the kingdom it will be given to you.” And Esther said, “If it please the king, may the king and Haman come this day to the banquet that I have prepared for him.”
Esther finds favor with the king! He extends his royal scepter and offers her half of his kingdom. This is a repeated theme, and shows that Esther is co-equal in authority with the king. Similarly, Yeshua/Jesus is co-equal with God the Father (John 1:1, 8:24, 10:30, Colossians 2:9, etc). Esther then invites the king and Haman to a banquet that day. In Esther 5:5-8, both the king and Haman attend the banquet, and Esther then invites the king and Haman to a second banquet to take place the next day.
Esther 5:9-14 tells us of Haman’s pride. After the first banquet, Haman goes out that day to gloat about his position, power, and glory. He boasts about being invited to the queen’s royal banquets. He is still enraged with Mordecai, and thinks he is victorious. Haman’s wife, Zeresh, suggests that he build a gallows 50 cubits high on which to hang Mordecai in the morning, which he builds. This symbolizes Satan, prideful and defiant, believing that he is victorious and planning to destroy God’s people in a very public way.
On the night after the first banquet Ahasuerus can not sleep. He reads the book of records and notices that no honor had been given to Mordecai after he saved the king from the plot by his officials (Est 2:21-23). Haman happens to be in the kings court getting ready to tell the king about his plan’s to kill Mordecai, but before he can, the king summons him to ask what should be bestowed upon someone the king wants to honor. Thinking the king seeks to honor him, Haman replies:
Esther 6:7-9 …“For the man whom the king desires to honor, let them bring a royal robe which the king has worn, and the horse on which the king has ridden, and on whose head a royal crown has been placed; and let the robe and the horse be handed over to one of the king’s most noble princes and let them array the man whom the king desires to honor and lead him on horseback through the city square, and proclaim before him…”
Of course, this honor goes to Mordecai rather than Haman! Not only that, but Haman is to carry out this very order of the king to honor Mordecai! Haman is humiliated and runs home to his wife. This is prophetic of the rewards of the Lord, with all of their glory and honor, which are promised to the Lord’s faithful. In this, the adversary, Satan, is humiliated and shamed. Haman is then summoned to the second banquet of the queen.
Esther 7:1-4, “Now the king and Haman came to drink wine with Esther the queen. And the king said to Esther on the second day also as they drank their wine at the banquet, “What is your petition, Queen Esther? It shall be granted you. And what is your request? Even to half of the kingdom it shall be done.” Then Queen Esther answered and said, “If I have found favor in your sight, O king, and if it please the king, let my life be given me as my petition, and my people as my request; for we have been sold, I and my people, to be destroyed, to be killed and to be annihilated.”
Esther again is offered half of the kingdom, but instead of accepting this offer, she requests that her life and her peoples’ lives be spared! Remember, to go before the king without being summoned was to tempt certain death (Esther 4:11), but instead of death, Esther received life and life for her people. Wow!! This symbolizes exactly what Yeshua did when He laid down His mortal life for His people so that His people could have everlasting life (John 3:16)!
Life is Given, the Enemy Defeated
Esther 7:5-7, “Then King Ahasuerus asked Queen Esther, “Who is he, and where is he, who would presume to do thus?” And Esther said, “A foe and an enemy, is this wicked Haman!” Then Haman became terrified before the king and queen. And the king arose in his anger from drinking wine and went into the palace garden; but Haman stayed to beg for his life from Queen Esther, for he saw that harm had been determined against him by the king.”
Esther 7:9-10, “Then Harbonah, one of the eunuchs who were before the king said, “Behold indeed, the gallows standing at Haman’s house fifty cubits high, which Haman made for Mordecai who spoke good on behalf of the king!” And the king said, “Hang him on it.” So they hanged Haman on the gallows which he had prepared for Mordecai, and the king’s anger subsided.”
Esther had succeeded! She and her people were spared annihilation. Mordecai’s fate fell on Haman, and he was hanged on the very gallows which he had built!
Here again we must pay attention to the dates. On Nisan 13 the decree was declared that all Jews, including Esther, were to die. Also, 500 years later, on Nisan 13 the plot to kill Yeshua was decreed by the Jewish leaders and He was betrayed by Judas (Mark 14:1). On Nisan 14 (Passover), Yeshua was crucified and died, and on Nisan 15 (Unleavened Bread), He was in the grave battling death and petitioning for His people. On Nisan 15 (Unleavened Bread) Esther went before the king to win his favor and petition for her people. On the day of the second banquet and the hanging of Haman, it was Nisan 16. This is the Feast of FirstFruits (Leviticus 23:11) and the exact date on which Yeshua/Jesus was raised as the First Fruit of mankind (Matt 28:1-2, Mark 16:1-4, Luke 24:1-4, John 20:1, 1 Cor 15:23)! On Nisan 16 (FirstFruits) Ahasuerus gave life to queen Esther and declared that through her the people would live and Haman (Satan) would die. On Nisan 16 (Firstfruits) Yeshua had defeated death and given everlasting life to all those that believe in Him!
John 14:19, “After a little while the world will no longer see Me, but you will see Me; because I live, you will live also."
Esther 8:1-2, “On that day King Ahasuerus gave the house of Haman, the enemy of the Jews, to Queen Esther; and Mordecai came before the king, for Esther had disclosed what he was to her. And the king took off his signet ring which he had taken away from Haman, and gave it to Mordecai. And Esther set Mordecai over the house of Haman.”
After the defeat of Haman (Satan), both Esther (Yeshua) and Mordecai (His obedient) are exalted by the king (God). Through the sacrifice of Esther (Yeshua), Mordecai and his people (His obedient) were spared, and Mordecai was able to come before the king (God). The king (God) gives Esther (Yeshua) the house of Haman (Satan), and Esther (Yeshua) sets Mordecai (His people) over this house. This is exactly what the bible promises to those who follow Yeshua; that through the blood of Messiah, the believers will be able to stand before God in Messiah’s righteousness (Ephesians 3:12, Hebrews 10:19-20, 1Peter 3:18). God has established Yeshua as Lord over all, and His saints will reign with Him in the millennium and in eternity (Daniel 7:18, 21-22, 27; Revelation 3:21, 5:9-10, 22:5). Hallelujah!
The New Decree
In Esther 8:3-7 we see queen Esther petition the king to avert the destructive decree of Haman, to which the king agrees. In Esther 8:8-14 Mordecai writes a new letter and seals it with the kings authority. In this letter he grants the Jews the right to assemble and defend themselves and destroy their enemies on one day, the 13th of Adar (twelfth month). This was the very day that Haman had decreed to be the day that all the Jews were to be annihilated. Adar is the last month of the year, is the last month that the Israelites were in Egypt before the Exodus, and is the month of Moses’ birth and death (Adar 7). This letter is written on the 23rd day of the third month (Sivan), the same month in which the Torah was given on Mt. Sinai (Exodus 19-24) and the Holy Spirit was given to the believers in Jerusalem on Shavuot (Acts 2). In this we see the symbolism of the New Covenant of the Lord, that is life through His Messiah’s sacrifice, going out to all people in every language and nation of the earth.
In Esther 8:15-16, Mordecai goes out from the kings presence dressed in royal robes of blue, white, linen, and purple, with a golden crown upon his head. We are also told in Esther 8:15 …many among the peoples of the land became Jews, for the dread of the Jews had fallen on them. We are told in Isaiah 61:10 that the followers of Yeshua will be clothed in God’s royal garments. In the end, many will turn to the Lord and seek to learn His ways and walk in His paths (Micah 4:1-2, Isaiah 2:2-3, Psalm 22:27, Psalm 86:9, Jeremiah 3:17-19).
Esther 9: 1-4, “Now in the twelfth month (that is, the month Adar), on the thirteenth day when the king’s command and edict were about to be executed, on the day when the enemies of the Jews hoped to gain the mastery over them, it was turned to the contrary so that the Jews themselves gained the mastery over those who hated them. The Jews assembled in their cities throughout all the provinces of King Ahasuerus to lay hands on those who sought their harm; and no one could stand before them, for the dread of them had fallen on all the peoples. Even all the princes of the provinces, the satraps, the governors, and those who were doing the king’s business assisted the Jews, because the dread of Mordecai had fallen on them. Indeed, Mordecai was great in the king’s house, and his fame spread throughout all the provinces; for the man Mordecai became greater and greater.”
Esther 9:6-10, “And in Susa the capital the Jews killed and destroyed five hundred men, and Parshandatha, Dalphon, Aspatha, Poratha, Adalia, Aridatha, Parmashta, Arisai, Aridai, and Vaizatha, the ten sons of Haman the son of Hammedatha, the Jews’ enemy.”
Here we see the people of Mordecai (Yeshua’s/Jesus’ people) and Esther (Yeshua/Jesus) against the forces of Haman (Satan). Just as there are 10 sons of Haman, there are 10 horns of the dragon and the beast that represent the 10 kings over which the anti-christ will rule (Dan 7, Rev 12, Rev 17). This is clearly a prophetic foreshadow of Second Coming and Armageddon*. Yeshua/Jesus along with His heavenly armies and raptured/resurrected believers, will defeat the forces of the anti-christ and his followers (Rev 20:11-16). Just when the enemies of God think they have the upper hand, they are completely destroyed, suddenly and swiftly, without being able to resist. During this time, the fame of Mordecai spreads and he became great, just as the fame of Yeshua/Jesus and His followers will spread to every nation and people.
The king asks queen Esther: “…Now what is your petition? It shall even be granted you. And what is your further request? It shall also be done.” Then said Esther, “If it pleases the king, let tomorrow also be granted to the Jews who are in Susa to do according to the edict of today; and let Haman’s ten sons be hanged on the gallows.” So the king commanded that it should be done so; and an edict was issued in Susa, and Haman’s ten sons were hanged. (Est 9:12-14).
There is a great mystery to this part of the story, which we will explore in a later article. Needless to say, Haman’s sons are hanged, even after they are killed.
After the defeat of Haman’s forces and the hanging of his son’s, there were 2 days of rest and feasting, Adar 14 and 15. this is exactly one month before Passover and Unleavened Bread. Mordecai wrote another letter to all the Jews obliging them to celebrate these days as Purim. Purim comes from the word “Pur,” which means “lot.”
Esther 9:24, “For Haman the son of Hammedatha, the Agagite, the adversary of all the Jews, had schemed against the Jews to destroy them, and had cast Pur, that is the lot, to disturb them and destroy them.”
Esther 9:26-27, “Therefore they called these days Purim after the name of Pur. And because of the instructions in this letter, both what they had seen in this regard and what had happened to them, the Jews established and made a custom for themselves, and for their descendants, and for all those who allied themselves with them, so that they should not fail to celebrate these two days according to their regulation, and according to their appointed time annually.”
Esther 9:29, "Then Queen Esther, daughter of Abihail, with Mordecai the Jew, wrote with full authority to confirm this second letter about Purim.”
Esther 10:3, "For Mordecai the Jew was second only to King Ahasuerus and great among the Jews, and in favor with the multitude of his kinsmen, one who sought the good of his people and one who spoke for the welfare of his whole nation.”
Queen Esther wrote with full authority to her people. In Matthew 28:18, after Yeshua’s resurrection, He states: “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.” And just like Mordecai ruled the people with Esther and her king, so will faithful followers of Yeshua/Jesus reign with our Savior and King, Yeshua Ha’mashiach/Jesus the Messiah:
2 Timothy 2:11-12, "It is a trustworthy statement: For if we died with Him, we will also live with Him; If we endure, we will also reign with Him; If we deny Him, He also will deny us."
The story of Esther is not just a story of an ancient queen. It is a story of the Lord’s Messiah, totally human and completely divine. Through His perfect obedience and willingness to to lay down His life, He defeated death, attained everlasting life for His people, and destroyed His evil enemies. He has full authority over all creation, and through His mercy and grace He promises those who are faithful to Him that they will reign with Him throughout all eternity! Amen and Hallelujah!!