Tuesday 3 June, 2014

Esther 3:1-6

3 After those events, King Xerxes honored Haman. Haman was the son of Hammedatha. He was from the family line of Agag. The king gave Haman a higher position than he had before. He gave him a seat of honor. It was higher than the positions any of the other nobles had. 2 All of the royal officials at the palace gate got down on their knees. They gave honor to Haman. That’s because the king had commanded them to do it. But Mordecai refused to get down on his knees. He wouldn’t give Haman any honor at all. 3 The royal officials at the palace gate asked Mordecai a question. They said, “Why don’t you obey the king’s command?” 4 Day after day they spoke to him. But he still refused to obey. So they told Haman about it. They wanted to see whether he would let Mordecai get away with what he was doing. Mordecai had told them he was a Jew. 5 Haman noticed that Mordecai wouldn’t get down on his knees. He wouldn’t give Haman any honor. So Haman burned with anger. 6 But he had found out who Mordecai’s people were. So he decided not to kill just Mordecai. He also looked for a way to destroy all of Mordecai’s people. They were Jews. He wanted to kill all of them everywhere in the kingdom of Xerxes.

King Xerxes had commanded that his servants bow before Haman as he was the highest ranking government official of the day. Bowing before Haman was a sign of respect and the custom. Mordecai refused to bow down or show him respect. This action enraged Haman and he sought not only to punish Mordecai but all the Jewish people in King Xerxes Kingdom.

This Scripture encourages me to make a stand for what I believe. The imagery of Mordecai standing while everyone else bowed as expected is very powerful. It sure got him noticed! Modecai’s faith and conviction enabled him to defy the custom of the day. He would honour God by not bowing before a man and cop the consequences. Unfortunately those consequences extended to his fellow Jews.

It is the aim of the Christian to honour God by the way they live their life – just like Mordecai. There are times when we will stick out because our views are aligned with the word of God and not the popular culture of today. For this reason people will not only take a swipe at us but have a go at Christendom in general too. Mordecai never wavered. He never bowed. I’m encouraged to do like wise.

Dear God, please help me to be like Mordecai and make a stand for you. Help me to be true to you and not bow to the beliefs of our times. Let me trust you with the consequences, Amen

Written by Ainslie Woods

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