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Article Archives

Purim

Purim marks the Jewish people’s deliverance from a royal death decree, by an ancient Persian King, around the fourth century BCE, as told in the Book of Esther. Annually celebrated as a type of Jewish Mardi Gras on the 14th of Adar (March 1, 2018), the story is set in interesting times. A new king had come into power, and the acculturated Jews of Susa found themselves at the epicenter of a celebration of epic proportions.

During this debaucherous party, the reigning Queen Vashti refused to parade before the King and his entourage. This ignited the king’s fierce fury, and she was hence deposed. A magnanimous beauty contest was then held to choose a replacement. Maidens were made fit for the king with a year long, extensive beauty treatment including special oils and perfumes.

Esther alone did not ask for props, nor extraordinary fragrances when she was to present herself to King Ahasuerus. Furthermore, although she did conceal her identity as a Jewess, true glory can never really be hidden. Something unique happened when the king met Hadassah; and of all the women in the kingdom, he desired her alone.

Esther was regal, but not by external additions or colognes; a true nobility shone through her. She was chosen by God for the salvation of his people. Destiny was awakened, according to God’s sovereign plan. Hadassah came to royal position, for just a time as this.

This was an era when a megalomaniac named Haman had orchestrated a master plan for the destruction of the Jews. He cast the pur (lot) for their destruction and ruin. However, due to Queen Esther’s position, she and her astute uncle Mordecai, arranged to foil that arrangement, so that the Jews were allowed to defend themselves throughout the entire province of Persia.

Rejoicing ensued for days on end, as the Jewish people celebrated triumph, deliverance, and relief from their enemies. Sorrow was turned into joy, and mourning into celebration. Hence the holiday has continued annually, even until now, and Purim is a designated time to commemorate the sovereignty, grace, and salvation of our God. Blessed is He forever.



 


Added on November 20, 2014
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