“3 Then Queen Esther answered, ‘If I have found favour with you, Your Majesty, and if it pleases you, grant me my life – this is my petition. And spare my people – this is my request. For I and my people have been sold to be destroyed, killed and annihilated. If we had merely been sold as male and female slaves, I would have kept quiet, because no such distress would justify disturbing the king.’King Xerxes asked Queen Esther, ‘Who is he? Where is he – the man who has dared to do such a thing?’Esther said, ‘An adversary and enemy! This vile Haman!’Then Haman was terrified before the king and queen. The king got up in a rage, left his wine and went out into the palace garden. But Haman, realising that the king had already decided his fate, stayed behind to beg Queen Esther for his life.Just as the king returned from the palace garden to the banqueting hall, Haman was falling on the couch where Esther was reclining.The king exclaimed, ‘Will he even molest the queen while she is with me in the house?’As soon as the word left the king’s mouth, they covered Haman’s face.” NIV

This is surely one of the great lines in the book:

’The adversary and enemy! this vile Haman’’ (6).

Throughout the chapter the pantomime continues, and even descends into farce (8). You want to laugh, but if it is funny it is tragically so.

The sad truth is we reap what we sow.

‘’He who is pregnant with evil and conceives trouble gives birth to disillusionment. He who digs a hole and scoops it out falls into the pit he has made. The trouble he causes recoils on himself: his violence comes down on his own head’’ (Psalm 7:14-16).

Haman is an embodiment of this principle.

‘Those that are most haughty and insolent when in power and prosperity, commonly, like Haman, are the most abject and poor-spirited when brought down. The day is coming when those that hate and persecute God’s chosen ones, would gladly be beholden to them. The king returns yet more angry against Haman. Those about him were ready to put his wrath into execution. How little can proud men be sure of the interest they think they have! The enemies of God’s church have often been thus taken in their own craftiness. The Lord is known by such judgments…Let the workers of iniquity tremble, turn to the Lord, and seek pardon through the blood of Jesus.’ Matthew Henry.

By the way, at this moment Xerxes must have realised that Esther was a Jew, and there is no record to indicate that he was perturbed by the news!

PRAYER: Lord, may we realise that our actions have consequences.