One of the only two written Old Testament books bearing female names is the Book of Esther. The writings were presumably composed around 460 to 331 B.C., between the reigns of Xerxes I and Alexander the Great.
The story it entails was deemed to be one of the most touching narratives in the Bible. It taught us how important women are in the greater story of redemption. Esther decided to put her life in danger, face the king, and believe in the Lord, even if it meant losing her life.
Her personal stories continue to encourage Christians by demonstrating what God can do when they put their trust in Him.
- 1 Who Was Esther In The Bible?
- 2 What Kind Of Woman Was Esther In The Bible?
- 3 The Story Of Esther In The Bible
- 4 Why Was Esther Important?
- 5 How Did Queen Esther Die In The Bible?
- 6 Conclusion
Who Was Esther In The Bible?
Esther came into the world during a period when Israel faced exile as punishment for their rebellion against God. After Esther’s parents were murdered, her cousin Mordecai (an official stationed near the king’s gate) raised her as his child.
He managed to offer Esther a comfortable house and an education in Persia’s capital city, Shushan. Growing up, he truly instilled in Esther the characteristics of a decent, caring, and faithful person.
Esther’s life shows an astounding story of bravery and faith. Yes, she became the lovely young queen of the Persian Empire, but she experienced difficult situations before having that royal title.
Esther’s life began as a simple woman from a faraway land—she was a foreigner and also a member of a minority group that was despised. When she was eventually selected to be the queen, Mordecai urged her not to reveal her Jewish nationality (Esther 2:10).
What Kind Of Woman Was Esther In The Bible?
Esther was not just beautiful, but she was also a figure of extraordinary virtue. In the king’s search for his next queen, he dishonored and disgraced numerous young ladies, demoting them to the status of mistress (without the position or rights of wife or queen).
Although Esther had no power over what was taking place around her, she took charge of her reactions with modesty and humility. Throughout the 12 months Esther was subjected to the necessary beauty treatments, it was her qualities that garnered the attention of the people in command.
Once it was her time to go to the ruler, she was allowed to bring something (like what the other women did before her) to gain the favor of the king. She opted for faith over deception, and all she requested was what the king’s eunuch, Hegai, who oversaw the harem, offered. And Esther received the approval of everybody who met her (Esther 2:15).
The Story Of Esther In The Bible
Esther existed in ancient Persia around a century after her exile in Babylon. Esther’s Hebrew birth name was Hadassah, which translates to “myrtle,” the name of a flower that symbolizes prosperity. Mordecai adopted and raised his cousin Esther after her parents’ deaths left her orphaned.
The Royal Beauty Competition
The Persian Empire’s ruler, King Xerxes I (Ahasuerus), gave a grand banquet one day. On the last day of the celebrations, he summoned his queen, Vashti, anxious to show off her exquisite looks to his company. However, Queen Vashti refused to stand before Xerxes. In a fit of rage, he removed Queen Vashti from the throne and banished her from his kingdom for good.
Xerxes held a royal beauty competition to pick his prospective queen. Esther demonstrated her ability to make friends as well as her skill for influencing others during the pageant.
She met and delighted Hegai, the ruler’s eunuch in command of the harem, when she initially arrived at the king’s palace, where all the other candidates were held. In the end, Esther won, was picked for the throne, and got the royal crown.
The Series Of Wicked Plots
Eventually, Mordecai, her cousin, rose through the ranks of Susa’s Persian administration. Mordecai soon found out about a conspiracy aimed at assassinating the king.
Two eunuchs, Bigthan and Teresh, planned to kill the king. Mordecai tells Esther of the plot, and she informs Xerxes, bringing acknowledgment to her cousin. The scheme was prevented, and Mordecai’s display of loyalty was noted in the king’s records.
Meanwhile, the king’s chief officer at that moment was a terrible man called Haman. He despised Jews, particularly Mordecai, who had declined to submit to him. Haman hatched a plan to wipe out every Jew throughout Persia.
The monarch consented to his plan to destroy the Jewish people by a specified date. At that point, Mordecai discovered what was going on and told Esther about it, confronting her with these renowned remarks:
“Do not think that because you are in the king’s house, you alone of all the Jews will escape. For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?” (Esther 4:13–14, NIV).
The Brave Esther And Her Strategic Plan
Esther encouraged everyone in the Jewish community to fast and sincerely pray for God’s deliverance. After that, fearless young Esther begins a plan to address the ruler with a big request, jeopardizing her safety and life.
She planned two separate banquets. The first one allowed Esther to ease the king as well as Haman to win their trust. King Ahasuerus was reminded of why he picked Esther to become his wife and how deeply he adored her.
Now that she had lavishly entertained the monarch, the rules obligated him to give her something much greater in return. But Esther felt it wasn’t the right time to show all of her cards just yet. She invited them to another expensive meal the next day and left the outcome to God.
The Favorable Outcome Of Esther’s Plot
During the second banquet, Esther planned to carry out her move with God’s assistance. God provided her with the words she certainly needed to appeal for her own and her people’s lives. Here, wearing her royal robes, she finally unveiled her Jewish ancestry to the king, along with Haman’s evil scheme to destroy her and her people.
Her diplomacy and strategy gained the favor of the king. Haman recognized that his survival was now in peril. He collapsed on Esther’s sofa, begging her to request that the king save his life. But in a fit of anger, the king commanded Haman to be hanged on the gallows, which Haman had constructed for Mordecai.
Mordecai received a promotion to Haman’s chief position, and Jews received protection and assurance across the country. The people rejoiced at God’s miraculous deliverance, and the festive feast of Purim was established.
Why Was Esther Important?
Esther’s boldness and confidence in the eternal God demonstrate this young woman’s faith in Him. The way she lived exemplifies the supremacy of God over His creation. The Lord orchestrates every facet of life to place individuals, societies, and circumstances within his scheme and purposes.
We may not understand what God is working on many times in our lives. But eventually, we will recognize His reason—why we have had particular experiences, encountered specific individuals, stayed in certain regions, visited certain places, or done specific journeys.
When things come together, we can look back and realize that, like Esther, we were at the perfect place at the perfect time.
She was made stronger and equipped to stand up for her people and God “for such a time as this” (Esther 4:14). She remained steadfast in her obedience. Esther relied on God and obeyed humbly, regardless of what the price was.
With this, Esther fully exemplifies God’s assurance, which is found in Romans 8:28: “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”
How Did Queen Esther Die In The Bible?
Haman tried to murder Esther in the Book of Esther; however, his plan was unsuccessful. Her final demise is undocumented in written works and other different sources. Today, her death remains a mystery to us.
In her book, she stated, “If I die, I die” (Esther 4:16). This shows that she’s ready to die to bring her people to safety. Her love and passion for God and her people were greater than her own precious life. Esther had no idea how her strong words of resignation would reverberate down through history.
Esther’s courageous deeds saved her people’s lives and provided her with great success. Haman’s malicious conduct resulted in a severe punishment. As stated in the Bible, action is like planting seeds.
When we plant radish seedlings, we will soon have radishes to consume. We will get squash if we plant pumpkin seeds. Whatever seeds we plant (“sow”) in the soil will yield the same crop for us to harvest (“reap”).
This reflects the situation we are all in. If we do good deeds, we typically see positive results, and when we do bad, we tend to find ourselves in trouble (Galatians 6:7). God observes our actions and rewards us for both good and wicked conduct (Jeremiah 32:19).
Esther was a simple woman whom God picked to be the crowned Persian queen. A Purim feast honored her bravery, and an ordinance was passed stating, “These days of Purim should be remembered and kept throughout every generation” (Esther 9:28). Esther’s people still celebrate Purim today.
Indeed, God called Esther in the same way that He called Moses, Joseph, Joshua, and other biblical figures to save his people from tragedy. “For by grace you have been saved through faith,” Ephesians 2:8 reads. We are all freed from death and eternal suffering through God’s providence and Jesus’ selfless sacrifice. Truly, God is capable of saving his children.