Esther 3:7-15 Haman's Wicked Plot Against The Jews - verse by verse sermon
Our text this morning is found in Esther 3: 7-15,
In the first month, which is the month of Nisan, in the twelfth year of King Ahasuerus, they cast Pur (that is, they cast lots) before Haman day after day; and they cast it month after month till the twelfth month, which is the month of Adar. 8 Then Haman said to King Ahasuerus, “There is a certain people scattered abroad and dispersed among the peoples in all the provinces of your kingdom. Their laws are different from those of every other people, and they do not keep the king's laws, so that it is not to the king's profit to tolerate them. 9 If it please the king, let it be decreed that they be destroyed, and I will pay 10,000 talents of silver into the hands of those who have charge of the king's business, that they may put it into the king's treasuries.” 10 So the king took his signet ring from his hand and gave it to Haman the Agagite, the son of Hammedatha, the enemy of the Jews. 11 And the king said to Haman, “The money is given to you, the people also, to do with them as it seems good to you.”
12 Then the king's scribes were summoned on the thirteenth day of the first month, and an edict, according to all that Haman commanded, was written to the king's satraps and to the governors over all the provinces and to the officials of all the peoples, to every province in its own script and every people in its own language. It was written in the name of King Ahasuerus and sealed with the king's signet ring. 13 Letters were sent by couriers to all the king's provinces with instruction to destroy, to kill, and to annihilate all Jews, young and old, women and children, in one day, the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which is the month of Adar, and to plunder their goods. 14 A copy of the document was to be issued as a decree in every province by proclamation to all the peoples to be ready for that day. 15 The couriers went out hurriedly by order of the king, and the decree was issued in Susa the citadel. And the king and Haman sat down to drink, but the city of Susa was thrown into confusion.
Our text can be divided up into the following points:
Haman casts lots to destroy the Jews
Haman comes to present his plan to the king
The king grants approval for Haman to carry out the plot
A letter is sent out to all the provinces
The reaction to this news
Haman Casts Lots To Destroy The Jews
Read with me verse 7, “In the first month, which is the month of Nisan, in the twelfth year of King Ahasuerus, they cast Pur (that is, they cast lots) before Haman day after day; and they cast it month after month till the twelfth month, which is the month of Adar.”
I once read an article that was describing the chaos that often happens in a New York emergency room. On the cover of the article there was a doctor sitting outside the ER getting some fresh air. He sat there looking exhausted with his elbows up on his knees with his hands coming up and covering his face. He looked tired. He needed a few moments alone to collect his thoughts and his composure.
The reporter interviewed this doctor about the stress that he experienced while working in the ER. He said that he never knew what he might experience on a shift within the ER. He said that you always experience something new and unexpected. You might encounter an individual who had drowned, who had been in a car wreck, who had been shot, who had overdosed, or who had experienced some tragedy while working. The list of things he encountered went on and on. By the way, this article was written before COVID19 which was something that I’m sure he never dreamed of dealing with.
At the end of the article the doctor said that this was his fifth year in the ER and he finally felt as though he would probably be able to handle any situation that he might encounter. He had come to believe that he had experienced enough things in the last five years that he would know the right thing to do, at the right time, for whoever might be brought into the ER for help. He said that after five years he could no begin to relax and know that everything would be fine on his shift.
I bring up this story because we discover in Esther 3:7 that Esther has now been queen for five years. If Esther’s experience was similar to the ER doctor in that story she would just be starting to feel comfortable with her new role as queen. She would just be getting comfortable with all of the changes that had been thrust upon her through all of these events that we have discussed. She may have just gotten to the point to where she would wake up in the morning and feel confident that she was experienced and capable enough to handle anything that might arise during that day.
But it was at this time when something happened that no one expected. Esther is about to be thrust into another overwhelming situation. Haman the Agagite became angry at Mordecai and he was about to implement an evil plan to destroy all of the Jews.
Our text opens with Mordecai casting lots to see when he should carry out this plan against the Jews. Haman first casts lots to see what day this evil plot should be carried out and it fell upon the 13th day. After that he cast lots again to determine what month it should be carried out. The Lots fell upon the twelfth month.
Haman is confident that luck and fortune are on his side as he is throwing the Pur to decide these dates. He is oblivious to the providence, wisdom, and the sovereignty of God that is behind everything that happens. Haman is not aware of Proverbs 16:33 which states, “The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the Lord.” Because Haman is not aware of these things he is confident that the date the Pur have fallen upon are the dates that the Jewish people will be destroyed.
Instead, God is controlling all of these details. It is the LORD that is picking the exact dates so that His sovereign will is going to be carried out. The lots fall upon the last month of the year which will provide all the time that will be needed for Haman’s plot to be thwarted. During this time we will see in the coming weeks that during this time His people will be turning to Him, seeking His face, and inquiring of the LORD. The LORD is using all of these things for good.
Haman PresentsHis Plan To The King
Look with me at Esther 3:8-9, “Then Haman said to King Ahasuerus, ‘There is a certain people scattered abroad and dispersed among the peoples in all the provinces of your kingdom. Their laws are different from those of every other people, and they do not keep the king's laws, so that it is not to the king's profit to tolerate them. If it please the king, let it be decreed that they be destroyed, and I will pay 10,000 talents of silver into the hands of those who have charge of the king's business, that they may put it into the king's treasuries.’”