Esther 9

The Jews Destroy Their Enemies

1 aNow in the twelfth month, which is the month of Adar, bon the thirteenth day of the same, cwhen the king’s command and edict were about to be carried out, don the very day when the enemies of the Jews hoped to gain the mastery over them, the reverse occurred: the Jews gained mastery over those who hated them. 2 eThe Jews gathered in their cities throughout all the provinces of King Ahasuerus to lay hands on those who sought their harm. And no one could stand against them, ffor the fear of them had fallen on all peoples. 3All the officials of the provinces and gthe satraps and the governors and the royal agents also helped the Jews, for the fear of Mordecai had fallen on them. 4For Mordecai was great in the king’s house, and his fame spread throughout all the provinces, for the man Mordecai grew hmore and more powerful. 5The Jews struck all their enemies with the sword, killing and destroying them, and did as they pleased to those who hated them. 6In Susa the citadel itself the Jews killed and destroyed 500 men, 7and also killed Parshandatha and Dalphon and Aspatha 8and Poratha and Adalia and Aridatha 9and Parmashta and Arisai and Aridai and Vaizatha, 10 ithe ten sons of Haman the son of Hammedatha, jthe enemy of the Jews, kbut they laid no hand on the plunder.

11That very day the number of those killed in Susa the citadel was reported to the king. 12And the king said to Queen Esther, “In Susa the citadel the Jews have killed and destroyed 500 men and also the ten sons of Haman. What then have they done in the rest of the king’s provinces! lNow what is your wish? It shall be granted you. And what further is your request? It shall be fulfilled.” 13And Esther said, “If it please the king, let the Jews who are in Susa be allowed mtomorrow also to do according to this day’s edict. And let the ten sons of Haman be hanged on the gallows.”
Or stake
14So the king commanded this to be done. A decree was issued in Susa, and the ten sons of Haman were hanged. 15The Jews who were in Susa gathered also on the fourteenth day of the month of Adar and they killed 300 men in Susa, but they laid no hands on the plunder.

16 oNow the rest of the Jews who were in the king’s provinces also pgathered to defend their lives, and got relief from their enemies and killed 75,000 of those who hated them, but they laid no hands on the plunder. 17This was qon the thirteenth day of the month of Adar, and on the fourteenth day they rested and made that a day of feasting and gladness. 18But the Jews who were in Susa gathered ron the thirteenth day and on the fourteenth, and rested son the fifteenth day, making that a day of feasting and gladness. 19Therefore the Jews of the villages, who live in tthe rural towns, hold the fourteenth day of the month of Adar as a day for gladness and feasting, as ua holiday, and vas a day on which they send gifts of food to one another.

The Feast of Purim Inaugurated

20And Mordecai recorded these things and sent letters to all the Jews who were in all the provinces of King Ahasuerus, both near and far, 21obliging them to keep the fourteenth day of the month Adar and also the fifteenth day of the same, year by year, 22as the days on which the Jews got relief from their enemies, and as the month that had been turned for them from sorrow into gladness and from mourning into wa holiday; that they should make them days of feasting and gladness, days for sending gifts of food to one another and gifts to the poor.

23So the Jews accepted what they had started to do, and what Mordecai had written to them. 24For Haman the Agagite, the son of Hammedatha, xthe enemy of all the Jews, yhad plotted against the Jews to destroy them, and zhad cast Pur (that is, cast lots), to crush and to destroy them. 25But when it came before the king, he gave orders in writing aathat his evil plan that he had devised against the Jews abshould return on his own head, and that he and his sons should be hanged on the gallows.
Or suspended on a stake
26Therefore they called these days Purim, after the term adPur. Therefore, because of all that was written in aethis letter, and of what they had faced in this matter, and of what had happened to them, 27the Jews firmly obligated themselves and their offspring and afall who joined them, that without fail they would keep agthese two days according to what was written and at the time appointed every year, 28that these days should be remembered and kept throughout every generation, in every clan, province, and city, and that these days of Purim should never fall into disuse among the Jews, nor should the commemoration of these days cease among their descendants.

29Then Queen Esther, ahthe daughter of Abihail, and Mordecai the Jew gave full written authority, confirming aithis second letter about Purim. 30Letters were sent to all the Jews, ajto the 127 provinces of the kingdom of Ahasuerus, in words of peace and truth, 31that these days of Purim should be observed at their appointed seasons, as Mordecai the Jew and Queen Esther obligated them, and as they had obligated themselves and their offspring, with regard to aktheir fasts and their lamenting. 32The command of Esther confirmed these practices of alPurim, and it was recorded in writing.

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