Esther 4* The Jews lament their danger. (1-4) Esther undertakes to pleadfor the Jews. (5-17)1-4 Mordecai avowed his relation to the Jews. Publiccalamities, that oppress the church of God, should affect ourhearts more than any private affliction, and it is peculiarlydistressing to occasion sufferings to others. God will keepthose that are exposed to evil by the tenderness of theirconsciences. 5-17 We are prone to shrink from services that are attendedwith peril or loss. But when the cause of Christ and his peopledemand it, we must take up our cross, and follow him. WhenChristians are disposed to consult their own ease or safety,rather than the public good, they should be blamed. The law wasexpress, all knew it. It is not thus in the court of the King ofkings: to the footstool of his throne of grace we may alwayscome boldly, and may be sure of an answer of peace to the prayerof faith. We are welcome, even into the holiest, through theblood of Jesus. Providence so ordered it, that, just then, theking's affections had cooled toward Esther; her faith andcourage thereby were the more tried; and God's goodness in thefavour she now found with the king, thereby shone the brighter.Haman no doubt did what he could to set the king against her.Mordecai suggests, that it was a cause which, one way or other,would certainly be carried, and which therefore she might safelyventure in. This was the language of strong faith, whichstaggered not at the promise when the danger was mostthreatening, but against hope believed in hope. He that bysinful devices will save his life, and will not trust God withit in the way of duty, shall lose it in the way of sin. DivineProvidence had regard to this matter, in bringing Esther to bequeen. Therefore thou art bound in gratitude to do this servicefor God and his church, else thou dost not answer the end of thybeing raised up. There is wise counsel and design in all theprovidences of God, which will prove that they are all intendedfor the good of the church. We should, every one, consider forwhat end God has put us in the place where we are, and study toanswer that end: and take care that we do not let it slip.Having solemnly commended our souls and our cause to God, we mayventure upon his service. All dangers are trifling compared withthe danger of losing our souls. But the trembling sinner isoften as much afraid of casting himself, without reserve, uponthe Lord's free mercy, as Esther was of coming before the king.Let him venture, as she did, with earnest prayer andsupplication, and he shall fare as well and better than she did.The cause of God must prevail: we are safe in being united toit
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