Worship this week with Holy Communion:
Saturday – 5:00 p.m. in the Chapel
Sunday – 8:30 a.m. Traditional Worship
9:30 a.m. Sunday School
10:30 a.m. Contemporary Worship
Devotions for the week:
December 7, 2014 “For such a time as this”
Reflect: [Modecai said,] And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” Esther 4:14b
Study: King Ahasuerus was ruler over Persia at the time of the exile. Having eliminated one queen, Vashti, for refusing to degrade herself in front of his drunken feast’s guests, the King chose Esther to become his new queen. Queen Esther was a beautiful Jewish woman. King Ahasuerus promoted a man named Haman above even the princes. One day while Haman entered the king’s gate he passed by Mordecai, a Jew. Mordecai refused to bow to Haman because Jews bowed only to Yahweh. Haman became enraged and plotted to have Mordecai killed.
Haman approached the king and requested the king’s approval to put out a bounty and a decree that all Jews would be put to death.
Mordecai put on sackcloth and sat in ash – a traditional form of Jewish lament. He then turned to his niece, Esther, who had become queen, for help. He implored her to ask the king to change his mind. Esther feared a wrathful reply. Mordecai reminded her that God may have put her in the king’s house for such a time as this. Esther agreed, and the king agreed to her request, and the Jews were saved.
Read: Sunday, Esther 4:1-17, Esther
Monday, Esther 1:1-22, King Ahasuerus Deposes Queen Vashti
Tuesday, Esther 2:1-23, Esther Becomes Queen
Wednesday, Esther 3:1-15, Haman Undertakes to Destroy the Jews
Thursday, Esther 5:1-14, Esther’s Banquet, Haman’s Plans
Friday, Esther 6:1-14, The King Honors Mordecai
Saturday, Esther 7:1—8:17, Esther Saves the Jews
- How did God use Esther to save God’s people? Where was God present, explicitly and implicitly in this story?
- How is beauty celebrated in your culture or community? How is beauty advantageous? How is it detrimental?