The Book of Esther stands out amongst the books of the Jewish Bible in that it does not mention the name of God. In fact; the Book of Esther does not explicitly declare any spiritual message. It is a story of the salvation of the Jews from the physical destruction that their enemies threatened them with. Yet the Book of Esther resonates with many important teachings that still guide us until today.
The story described in the Book of Esther takes place while Israel is in exile amongst the Gentile nations. There is no prophet to lead them. The leader of Israel at that time was Mordecai – a righteous Jew who loved his people and trusted in God.
We learn from this story that God is with Israel wherever they are. His spirit guides the righteous of the nation so that they can lead the nation in their state of exile. The fact that Israel survives and thrives in exile is a sign of God’s love for them and a cause for celebration.
Indeed while we are in exile God’s face is hidden from us (Deuteronomy 31:18). At the same time we rejoice in the fact that God is our eternal sanctuary – even in our exiled state (Ezekiel 11:16).
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Yisroel C. Blumenthal
And to all my fellow people, Esther 8:16
Reblogged this on 1000 Verses – a project of Judaism Resources.
I listened to Netanyahu’s speech today and he said something I’d been thinking about that I think a lot of Jews are also thinking with Purim approaching: two and a half thousand years ago, our people faced an existential threat from Persia; today we face such a threat yet again. Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose!