Esther 3

* Haman seeks to destroy the Jews. (1-6) He obtains a decree

against the Jews. (7-15)1-6 Mordecai refused to reverence Haman. The religion of a Jew

forbade him to give honours to any mortal man which savoured of

idolatry, especially to so wicked a man as Haman. By nature all

are idolaters; self is our favourite idol, we are pleased to be

treated as if every thing were at our disposal. Though religion

by no means destroys good manners, but teaches us to render

honour to whom honour is due, yet by a citizen of Zion, not only

in his heart, but in his eyes, such a vile person as Haman was,

is contemned, #Ps 15:4|. The true believer cannot obey edicts,

or conform to fashions, which break the law of God. He must obey

God rather than man, and leave the consequences to him. Haman

was full of wrath. His device was inspired by that wicked

spirit, who has been a murderer from the beginning; whose enmity

to Christ and his church, governs all his children.
7-15 Without some acquaintance with the human heart, and the

history of mankind, we should not think that any prince could

consent to a dreadful proposal, so hurtful to himself. Let us be

thankful for mild and just government. Haman inquires, according

to his own superstitions, how to find a lucky day for the

designed massacre! God's wisdom serves its own purposes by men's

folly. Haman has appealed to the lot, and the lot, by delaying

the execution, gives judgment against him. The event explains

the doctrine of a particular providence over all the affairs of

men, and the care of God over his church. Haman was afraid lest

the king's conscience should smite him for what he had done; to

prevent which, he kept him drinking. This cursed method many

often take to drown convictions, and to harden their own hearts,

and the hearts of others, in sin. All appeared in a favourable

train to accomplish the project. But though sinners are

permitted to proceed to the point they aim at, an unseen but

almighty Power turns them back. How vain and contemptible are

the strongest assaults against Jehovah! Had Haman obtained his

wish, and the Jewish nation perished, what must have become of

all the promises? How could the prophecies concerning the great

Redeemer of the world have been fulfilled? Thus the everlasting

covenant itself must have failed, before this diabolical project

could take place
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