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Daily Devotional

July 8

FROM SORROW TO GLADNESS AND FROM MOURNING INTO A GOOD DAY

by Henry T. Vriesen

Esther 6–9

That night king Ahasuerus could not sleep, and he asked his servants to bring the chronicles (book of records). While these were read, the king heard the report of a plot that had been made by two chamberlains to kill the king. Mordecai had reported the wicked plans and saved the ruler’s life. “What honor and dignity,” the king asked, “hath been done to Mordecai for this?” The servants answered, “There is nothing done for him.” The next morning Haman came to the palace, intending to get the king’s permission to hang Mordecai on the gallows that had been made. When the king saw him, he said, “What shall be done unto the man whom the king delighteth to honor?” Now Haman thought, “To whom would the king delight to honor more than to myself?” So he said, “Let the royal apparel be brought which the king useth to wear, and the horse that the king rideth upon and the royal crown which is set upon his head … and bring him on horseback through the streets of the city, and proclaim before him, Thus shall it be done to the man whom the king delighteth to honor.” Then the king said to Haman, “Make haste … and do even so to Mordecai; let nothing fail of all that thou hast spoken.” Haman did so; he dared not disobey the king’s command. Coming back he hurried to his house in shame and sorrow. Meanwhile the time for the banquet with Esther had arrived. A messenger came to remind Haman.

As they were sitting at the table, the king again said unto Esther, “What is thy ‘ petition, queen Esther? and it shall be granted thee … even to the half of the kingdom?” Then Esther answered and said, “If I have found favor in thy sight, O king, let my life be given me at my petition, and my people at my request; for we are sold, I and my people … to be slain, and to perish.” Then said the king, “Who is he, and where is he, that durst presume in his heart to do so?” And Esther answered, “The adversary … is this wicked Haman.” Then the king arose in his wrath. Haman also arose and turned to Esther to make request for his life; for he saw that evil was determined against him by the king. Then one of the servants said, “Behold also, the gallows fifty cubits high, which Haman hath made for Mordecai … standeth in the house of Haman.” Then the king said, “Hang him thereon.” So they hanged Haman on the gallows.

And the king took off his ring, which he had taken from Haman, and gave it to Mordecai. And he said to Mordecai and Esther, “Write ye also for the Jews, as it liketh you, in the king’s name, and seal it with the king’s ring.” Then the Jews rested from their enemies, and their sorrow was turned into joy.

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