The story of Esther and how she became Queen, wife of King Ahasuerus, is dramatic. Haman comes on the scene and wins the King’s favour, but Esther’s uncle, Mordecai declines to honour him by bowing down as he passes. A proud man, Haman decides to destroy not only Mordecai but all the Jews and sends an edict in the King’s name for this to happen in month of Adar (3:7), 11 months away.

Mordecai stands at the king’s gate (4:2) dressed in sackcloth. Esther, in the Palace is not aware of the first of these events. As a Jew should she speak up? She has not had an audience with the king for 30 days (verse 11) and this only happens when the king calls: it would cost your life if you came before the king uninvited, unless he held out the golden sceptre.

Mordecai sends Esther a message, “Do not think to yourself that in the king’s palace you will escape any more than all the other Jews, For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place … who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” (verses 13-15). Mordecai is conscious of the hand of God in affairs, causing “all things to work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). The “good” is the good of God’s purpose, who sees “the end from the beginning” (Isaiah 46:10).

Paul makes a parallel point in his letter to Philemon whose runaway slave Onesimus had become a believer. Paul comments, “For this perhaps is why he was parted from you for a while, that you might have him back forever; no longer as a slave, but more than a slave, as a beloved brother” (verses 15,16).

Let us not “keep silent” in testifying to the truth when challenging situations arise! If we believe we are in the service of God because belong to His son, we will become more conscious that God has the oversight of our lives and so “all things” are working “together for good”. We need to have the ‘vision’ Mordecai wanted Esther to have.

Now that God’s word is so freely available everyone should regularly feed their minds on it. It is “training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives …” (Titus 2:12). May it be that we are making progress in your “training” and are holding firm to God’s trustworthy word.