Daily Family Worship

Esther 7: The Ruin of Haman

by | Jan 30, 2023

esther 7

When the king and Haman were seated at Esther’s banquet, the king urged Esther – for the third time – to tell him what her request was. He longed to know, and he repeated his promise that it would indeed be granted. But Esther surprised him with her petition; for it was not for wealth or honor, or for the promotion of some of her friends to high offices. Rather, it was a humble plea for the preservation of herself and her people from death and destruction! “Let my life be given me at my petition, and my people at my request!” she pleaded. In essence, she was imploring that if the king had any affection for his wife, then now was the time to show it – for her life was at stake, and also the lives of all her people, who were very dear to her. She and her people had been bought and sold, she explained, to gratify the pride and revenge of one man. And they were not merely sold into slavery, but they were sold unto death and destruction.

The king was amazed at Esther’s words! “Who and where is he that dares to presume in his heart to do so?” he demanded. Was there truly such a monster in his kingdom, who would contrive the murder of the queen and all her friends? He wondered that anyone could be so evil as to think of such a bold and daring thing, but Satan had certainly filled Haman’s heart. Ahasuerus now realized the trickery that he had allowed to be played upon him, when his wicked vizier had convinced him to make that cruel and bloody edict for the destruction of a certain group of people in his kingdom.

Esther replied to the king’s question by plainly charging Haman with his crime, right to his face. “The adversary and enemy,” she declared, “is this wicked Haman!” And Haman quickly understood his danger; “he was afraid before the king and queen.” It was indeed time for him to be afraid when the queen was his prosecutor, the king was his judge, and his own conscience was a witness against him. And the surprising operations of the Lord’s Providence against him that very morning could not help increasing his fear.

Upon hearing this shocking news, the king immediately arose from the table in great anger, and strode into the palace garden to cool his temper and consider what was to be done. He did not send for his seven wise counselors, for he was probably ashamed to consult them about the undoing of a decree which he had rashly made without their knowledge or advice. He may have been angry with himself for being such a fool, but surely he was highly displeased with Haman for being such a villain as to be false to the trust that he had placed in him. Yet he would say and do nothing until he had taken time for second thoughts, so that he might proceed rightly.

Meanwhile, Haman became a humble petitioner to the queen herself for his own life. It was obvious from the king’s hasty flying out of the room that judgment was about to fall upon him. First, he stood up; and then he fell down at Esther’s feet. She had recently been doomed as a sheep to the slaughter; but now her sworn enemy confessed that he lay at her mercy, and he begged her for his own life. Thus did God take notice of the low estate of His handmaiden, and scatter the proud man in the imagination of his heart (Luke 1:48, 51).

But now the king has come inside again! And yet he returned even more exasperated against Ha-man, who lay in terror at Esther’s feet, begging for his life. It was only very recently that everything Haman said and did was taken well and construed to his advantage. But now, on the contrary, he was doing that which might have been taken as a sign of repentance; but even that action was interpreted to his disadvantage. “What!” exclaimed the king. “Will he even assault the queen in my own presence, and in my own house?” As soon as the king uttered these angry words, the servants covered Haman’s face; for he was a condemned man, marked for execution, and not worthy anymore to either see the king or be seen by him. One of the chamberlains who had just been sent to Haman’s house to fetch him to the banquet now informed the king of the gallows which he had prepared for Mordecai. Upon hearing this, the king immediately gave orders that Haman should be hanged thereon; and the execution was speedily carried out. Herein we see how the Lord brings down pride and punishes persecutors. He who expected everyone to do him homage was now made a disgraceful spectacle to the world. Upon many accounts, Haman was a wicked man; but his enmity to the people of God was his most provoking crime. And for that crime, the God to Whom vengeance belongs reckoned with him in justice. Haman’s evil plans returned upon his own head (Ps. 7:15-16; 9:15-16), for he was justly hanged upon the very same gallows which he had unjustly prepared for righteous Mordecai.

Trials, difficulties, and apparent impossibilities of deliverance will surely beset the people of Jesus while they are here on earth. But despite all the difficulties which lay in their way, He can never overlook or forget their cause! In Him, all the blessings of redemption are everlastingly secured to His people. Things may seem dark now, but the morning will surely come! Truly, all things must and do work together for good to those who love the Lord! May He give us grace to not give up hope, and to wait patiently for His perfect timing.

Lord, we praise You as the Righteous Judge Who preserves us from the malice of our enemies, and brings the mischief of evil plotters upon their own heads! Amen.

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illustration by Gustave Doré, 1866  |  Wikimedia Commons