Mordecai lived in Susa, the metropolis of Persia (now Iran). He had adopted his uncle’s daughter (Esther 2:7), Hadasseh (whom we know as Esther), an orphan child. He brought her up as though she was his own daughter.
Queen Vashti had rejected King Xerxes when he ordered her to come to a royal banquet and “show herself off”. So, he banished her from the palace! A “Miss Persia” contest was held for “young virgins” throughout the kingdom; the winner would be given the prize of being King Xerxes; new queen.
Esther 2:5-8… Esther was the one who most pleased the king… and became queen.
Esther 2:10,11,20… Esther had a secret; she was a Jew.
Esther 2:21-23… The side-story.
Mordecai was referred to subsequently as one of those who “sat in the king’s gate”; this indicated his closeness to the king. While holding this office, he discovered a plot pf the king’s chamberlains to assassinate the king. Because he was alert, the plot was foiled. His service to the king in this way was recorded in the king’s royal diary… but the king was evidently not told.
You’ll want to remember this little side-story for a bit later in Esther’s story…
Soon after Esther became queen, a wicked man named Haman plotted to eliminate all Jews in the empire. Why? See Esther 3:1-5,6-9,10-15.
Esther 4:1-14… The Request.
Esther made plans to visit with the king, in the inner court, even though it was against the law to do so unless summoned by the king himself. And, to her relief, the king granted her anything she might ask for. So, what did she ask for? She asked that the king and his assistant, Haman, attend a special meal she would prepare… then another meal the next day. She evidently knew the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach…
Esther 5:9-14… How could this possibly end well?
Esther 6:1-3,4-9,10-14… The king’s insomnia led to some late-night reading… in his royal diary… which then led to Mordecai being honored!
Esther 7:1-10… Haman, who had made Mordecai his sworn enemy, was hung on the very gallows he had built for Mordecai.
One would think this might be the end… a happy ending. But, an irrevocable decree had been given by the king! God’s people were to be exterminated!! The king could not dismiss the old decree, but he could issue a new decree; the Jews were encouraged to fight back against anyone who might try to kill them. And, most bullies don’t want to harass someone who can – and will – fight back.
Esther 10:1-3… The Advancement of Mordecai.
Mordecai spent his life “working for the good of his people“… and speaking up for their welfare.
Do you approach life with that same determination?
Is it your goal – each day – to make a positive difference in the lives of the people God has put in your life?
Do you use your position, power, possessions, and “pull” to help others?
* Exert a Godly influence wherever God has placed you.
You can read Mordecai’s story throughout the book of Esther… and it is a GREAT story!