DESERT TRIUMPH

Delivered May 4, 1996

by Pastor Don Gettys at McDonald Rd. SDA Church, McDonald, TN.

DESERT TRIUMPH

Esther had been raised by her Godly cousin. Now when she was grown she had to make a choice to continue to serve God or reject her upbringing. She chose to remain true! Her early training was her internal textbook. Had she turned her back on God at this time thousands of her own people would have suffered or even died.

Parents, it is still true even today, if you train up your children in the way they should go, and you continue to live that Godly life before them and love them and pray and fast for them, when they get older they will not turn away from it--Proverbs 22:6.

Esther 4:16-- After 3 days I will go in to the king which is illegal, and if I perish, I perish! Look at how our God is the opposite of Xerxes. We are invited to come before Him. Let us come boldly unto the throne of Grace and obtain life. For Esther to come was to risk death. Esther is the only woman in the Bible that is asked to risk her very life to save her people. Obviously Beauty is not enough. Esther had the character of Jesus that comes from communion with Him.

Three full days of fasting by Esther and the Jews living in Susa. I believe it included prayer as well. Finally The day came for her to come before the king. D Day! Either Death or Deliverance. Talk about pressure. The fasting did not improve her appearance or physical strength either. Esther fasted while Haman feasted. What a contrast! As she went before the King, do you think she was nervous? I don't.

I believe that she was like Daniel's three friends as they faced the fiery furnace. The three most important words in the whole chapter of Daniel 3 are in verse 18.

Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego said to Nebuchadnezzar: If we are thrown in to the furnace our God is able to deliver us, BUT IF NOT, we will not serve your gods or worship your image. They had confidence. Esther went before Xerxes with godly courage and strength. God's will would be satisfactory with her. When you surrender yourself totally into God's hands, fear will not dominate you.

Esther has changed! Have you noticed it? Up till now she seems to be a pawn of male power. Now she is giving the orders. Esther is taking charge. Like a caterpillar in a cocoon she emerges from being a victim to be a victor. A person of strength and wisdom. Mordecai cared for Esther many years and now she saves him and all her people.

Esther is not a dumb blond, Proverbs 11:22--"Like a gold ring in a pigs snout is a beautiful woman without good sense."

We marvel at her strength and astute wisdom and rhetorical ability. These are a gift of God. It is amazing how she handles this critical, delicate crisis. God was directing her.

ESTHER 5:1-4 Looking her best Esther went in. She stood quietly in the hallway until the king saw her. All the prayers worked because the king smiled and extended his golden scepter. He said I will give you up to HALF of the kingdom! WOW! It was an outlandish offer by a rash eccentric monarch. He was in an exceptionally good mood.

One lesson we should learn here is that what we fear the most may never befall us. "The clouds we so much dread, are big with mercy and can break with blessings on our head." God was and is in charge of the hearts of rulers. Proverbs 21:1- "The king's heart is in the hand of the Lord, He directs it like the course of a stream wherever He pleases." The King eagerly received Esther.

She invited Him to a Banquet luncheon date later that day. Would you invite Haman to the meal? Doesn't It almost seem more dangerous with Haman there? God must have directed in this decision. You must use your head if you want to keep it. Brains must accompany beauty.

Notice how she approached the king. If you go in for a job interview or an important meeting with someone, you can get some excellent pointers from Esther.

At the meal the King repeated his offer to give her anything her heart desired. Esther asked the King and Haman to return for another banquet tomorrow. WHY TWO BANQUETS? Was Esther losing her nerve? NO. Proverbs 25:15 -- By Long forbearance a Ruler is persuaded. It also seems that in Esther, the one who holds the banquet holds the power.

Picture that first banquet, Three people seated at a great table. you see the king in the middle, Haman on one side, Esther on the other. Haman the murderer is like Judas at the Lord's supper table in the upper room. Both Judas and Haman would have a last happy meal just prior to their death. Both were exposed for what they were at the supper table. Both were hanging shortly afterwards.

It must have been hard for Esther to sit there and eat with Haman without showing her feelings. Esther has a wisdom given to her from Heaven. She was beautiful on the outside, and God had done some fine interior decorating as well.

ESTHER 5:9-- Haman went out as happy as a dog with five tails! Haman had climbed the ladder of success. Think of it, little old me!-- Having lunch with royalty! Just three of us at a banquet! How good can it get? I am second only to the king and queen of Persia! Can you see how those who quickly climb to great heights often suffer with dizziness?

As Haman went out all bowed before him. All until he came to the gate. There sat the hated Mordecai. Hamans joy soured quickly. When he got home he went into a bragging session with his wife ZERESH. Bragging like a new Grand-mother. Boasting about everything. Boasting just before his fall.--- Proverbs 16:18. His wife now suggests how he could rid his life of this one thorn in his flesh named Mordecai.

ESTHER 5:14-- HANG MORDECAI!
If you destroy the ringleader of the Jewish resistance you will be happy. He will be the first of all the others. As you hang him, his carcass will be just a sample of what is to follow for all Jews at the end of the year. Haman was delighted with the idea and immediately had the gallows constructed...In just one afternoon! Probably in his front yard by the street.

WHY build gallows 75 feet high?????
10-15 feet is enough to do the job. The proposed gallows would be at the tree tops so all Jews in Susa could see what the future held for them. If Mordecai would have been hung as planned he could have been the first human being as a type of Christ on the Cross. Mordecai would have been hung while Haman feasted at the banquet. Jesus was hung while the Jews ate at the passover.

SLEEPLESSNESS--
Esther 6:1ff-- When you can't sleep, it could be because God is trying to speak to your heart. The official records were brought in and Mordecai's heroic act in saving the kings life was unearthed. He had never been paid or even honored. It is interesting to me that Mordecai intervened to save the life of a secular heathen ruler! I believe Christians ought to be loyal, involved citizens!

The next day Haman comes in whistling and happy. He wants to discuss the hanging of Mordecai with the king. Poor old Haman must have been Mortified to be ordered to conduct a long fancy parade for Mordecai!

After the honor was given to Mordecai, Haman looks at his watch. O Dear! It is time for the banquet. He has lost his appetite. Things are not going to well. The tide had turned. Little did Hamans wife know that when he walked out the door she would never see him alive again.

Queen Esther had mastered Persian etiquette and in the midst of good food and beautiful surroundings she finally came out with her request to the king. Notice the wisdom of her words:

ESTHER 7:3-4 If I have found favor in your sight O King, and if it please the king, let my life be given me as my petition, and my people as my request; for WE HAVE BEEN SOLD, I and my people, to be DESTROYED, to be KILLED and to be ANNIHILATED. Now if we had only been sold as slaves, men and women, I would have remained silent, for the trouble would not be commensurate with the annoyance to the king.

In Persia the code of HAMMURABI did not permit GENOCIDE Because MASS MURDER is planned, Esther must speak up. Her entire nation would be exterminated! The King said: Who would dare do such a thing?

Note Esther's direct clear answer:
The ADVERSARY and ENEMY is this VILE Haman!
Esthers dark eyes must have flashed with fire as she spoke and pointed to Haman! You could probably just about see the wheels begin to turn in the Kings mind as the enormity of the accusation dawned upon his understanding.

He went outside to think. Out there he remembered how his own father, Darius was put out of power. Now this is about to happen to him. Haman was making a power play that would destroy even the Queen. Xerxes would be next. Esther is right. I must act quickly. So he goes back inside.

ESTHER 7:7-8 ..............Haman in Esthers bed...............

At first Haman probably stood by Esther to beg his life. But in a final desperation he tried to physically force her in some way. Men who abuse women will not prosper. The king came in and saw Haman and ordered his death. Immediately the nearby soldiers covered Hamans head. This was the usual procedure to prepare a person for execution. ESTHER 7:9-10 ......... Haman hanged................

How quickly things can change. In a few hours Esthers fears were erased, and the fame of Haman was hanging by a thread.

Esther was like Jesus. Both were intercessors for their people.

Dramatic change-- In Chapter 8:1-2 Esther given Hamans estate. She appoints Mordecai over it all as Prime Minister. Haman would turn over in his grave if he knew that all the treasures in his house would be enjoyed by the man he despised and hated. Too many today fail to sense the uncertainty of riches. The things of this life will let us down.

That day not only did God deliver but He went far beyond Esther's expectations. God lavished blessings upon Esther and her Godly father. If we are faithful to Jesus, I believe that we will be rewarded many times beyond our imagination.

ESTHER 8:15-16 All Jews were happy and joyful. And many people of other nationalities became Jews! God's people now had the right to defend themselves. They were to stand for their lives. Angels that excelled in strength were commissioned by God to protect His people-- PK 602.

Someday we will face a Death Decree! Revelation 12:17 predicts war on God's end time remnant people who keep the His commandments and have the testimony of Jesus. The last day "decree that will finally go forth against the remnant people of God will be very similar to that issued by Ahasuerus (Xerxes) against the Jews. Enemies see (Sabbath Keepers) as a Mordecai at the gate," PK 605. We are told here that "Some who today are living on the earth (in 1915), will see these words fulfilled."

In the last days there will be floods, economic crisis, fires, natural catastrophes. It will be said that unless America gets back to God these disasters will keep increasing. Sunday laws will be enacted. Death decrees will be issued. But the God of Esther will again vindicate His people.

Esther was faithful to God in hard circumstances. Today we need men and women who will stand for the right. Who are not afraid to be called Christians. People who know how to pray. People of the Bible. People who have a saving relationship with Jesus. Some day we will all gather on Heavens shore and there we will see Beautiful Esther. That day is soon to come. You can be there through Jesus Christ our wonderful Saviour. Give your heart to Him just now.



Email us at our Sermons Contact Page

Return to McDonald Road Sermons Index

Return to McDonald Road SDA Church Home Page

McDonald Road Sermons converted to HTML and
last updated 2/3/98 by Bob Beckett.