Last Updated on May 20, 2023 by David H Mercer
Esther begins with Queen Vashti refusing to obey an order from her husband, King Xerxes. She was subsequently banished, and the search for a new queen began. The king sent out a decree to gather together all the beautiful women in the empire and bring them into the royal harem. King Xerxes was so pleased with Esther that he made her his queen.
The book of Esther is an example of God’s divine guidance and care over our lives. God’s sovereignty and power are seen throughout this book. Although we may question certain circumstances in our lives, we must have faith that God is in control, working through both the pleasant and difficult times so that we can serve him effectively.
Because of Queen Esther’s courageous act, a whole nation was saved. Seeing her God-given opportunity, she seized it! Her life made a difference. Read Esther and watch for God at work in your life. Perhaps he has prepared you to act in “such a time as this.”
Writer of Esther
While the name of the author is unknown, the book was written by a Jew who was familiar with Persian customs and words. Possibly Mordecai (9:29), some have suggested Ezra or Nehemiah because of the similarity of the writing style.
Esther must have been written sometime shortly after 465 B.C. near the end of the reign of the Persian king Xerxes.
Purpose of Esther
One of the main purposes of the book of Esther is to show us from the lives of Esther and Mordecai a classic example of successful teamwork. Their relationship vividly portrays the unity that the Lord Jesus prayed for His disciples to experience (John 17). The success of their individual roles, even their unity. Esther also shows how God destroys those who try to harm His people. From this, we are reminded that He is faithful to destroy Satan and that his sovereign purposes ultimately prevail.
The book of Esther is valuable historically because it gives us a view of the Jewish people who were scattered throughout the ancient world after the Babylonian exile. When the Persians overthrew the Babylonians, they allowed the Jewish exiles to return to their native land; but thousands of Jewish citizens chose to remain in Persian. This is the setting of Esther.
Beginning with Genesis, God had made it clear that He would bless His covenant people and bring a curse upon those who tried to do them harm. Esther shows once again that we can trust God to work out His ultimate purpose of redemption in our lives.
One unusual fact about this book is that it never mentions the name of God, but a careful reading will reveal that the book does have a spiritual base. Although the enemies of the covenant people may triumph for a season, God holds the key to ultimate victory.
Click here to download or print the Bible outline “Esther – For Such A Time As This“.