Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Esther-Part 5

Est 8.1-17 tells us that on the day that Haman was hanged, the king gave the house of Haman to Esther, and Mordechai came before the king. Esther has told the king what he was related to her, and the king took off his signet ring which he had taken away from Haman, and gave it to Mordechai. Now, the term “on that day” in Est 8.1 is an eschatological term relating to the coming of the Messiah and the Messianic Kingdom The king gives all that belonged to Haman to Esther, and she gives it to Mordechai. In the same way, “on that day” when Yeshua returns, all that belonged to the False Messiah will be given to Yeshua. Any decree which was written in the name of the king and sealed with the signet ring may not be revoked.

However, Haman’s evil decree that called for the destruction of the Jewish people was still in force. Esther comes before the king and asks him to revoke the letters of Haman that exposed her people to danger. He tells her to “write to the Jews” (v 8) with his name affixed to it, telling the Jews to defend themselves against anyone who comes against them on the 13th of Adar.

Which side was the king on? There are two conflicting letters now, and the local rulers couldn’t help but wonder what the king was doing. First, we can kill the Jews, now we let them defend themselves. They had to make the right decision. That means Mordechai had a job to do. He had to win over the governors and rulers to enforce the second letter and ignore the first letter, and that was not going to be easy. So, he went out in royal robes of blue and white, with a large crown of gold and a garment of fine linen and purple, and the city of Shushan rejoiced.

This was psychological warfare now. He did this to show everyone that the second decree was where the heart of the king was, even if he was indifferent about it. In each city where the king’s new decree was heard, there was gladness and joy for the Jews, a feast and a holiday. And many among the peoples of the land became Jews, for “the dread of the Jews had fallen on them.” But many were not true converts but were motivated by fear. Est 8.17 says they “feigned Jewishness” when they had no intention of really converting (Vilna Gaon).

Est 9.1-32 is a picture of the Second Redemption. There is a period of time from the death of Haman, the second decree and the thirteenth of Adar, which is nearly a year. In the same manner, there is a period of time between Yeshua’s victory over Satan at the cross and resurrection until the final redemption. As a side note, when the Temple was standing and there was a functioning priesthood in the first century, the month of Adar is a time when people prepare for Passover by cleansing themselves and their house. But this will have a new application in Persia, and the Jews will be cleansing the land of their enemies. Mordechai’s fame spread throughout the provinces in the same way Yeshua’s fame has spread throughout the provinces of the world (v 1-4).

The twelfth month of Adar (on the religious calendar) arrived and on the thirteenth day the Jews were ready to defend themselves. Things were different now. The Jews had the help of the king and on a day the enemies of the Jews thought they were going to overpower them, the opposite occurred. The Jews struck all their enemies with the sword and they did whatever they wanted to those who hated them. In Shushan alone they killed 500 men (v 11-12).

Now Haman had ten sons and these sons were killed, and their names are listed in Est 9.7-9. These sons are a picture of the ten kings that are associated with the False Messiah and fall with him (Dan 7.7, 20, 24; Rev 13.1, 17.12). Although Haman was hung on Nisan 17, these sons were killed much later, on Adar 13 (Est 9.6-10). But, as we are going to see, this event is very eschatological.

We are going to spend some time in this chapter in order to glean many of the prophetic implications found in these verses, but it won’t be all of them we can assure you. We will go over the literal, historical events first, then go over the eschatological meanings.

On Adar 13, all the people who were killed in Shushan the capital was reported to the king, and the ten sons of Haman. In addition, Shushan was divided and in two parts. Esther requested that the ten sons of Haman be hanged on the gallows. In other words, they were killed first and then impaled. They were put on display to show that the people’s justice was done, and that the king was in solidarity with the Jews. It also showed that the king commanded it and it was done (v 12).

On Adar 14, an additional 300 were killed in the other part of Shushan. Some saw what happened and hid so there wasn’t as many. The rest of the Jews who were in the provinces were assembled to defend themselves, and they killed 75,000 of those who hated them. In each case, the Jews did not plunder the belongings of those killed. This was to show they had no financial reason to slay them, it was only in self defense (v 15).

So, their defense took place on Adar 13 in the provinces and they rested on Adar 14, and they made it a holiday of feasting and joy. However, the Jews is Shushan assembled on Adar 13 and 14, and they rested on Adar 15, and that was a day of feasting. As a result, the Jews in the rural areas made Adar 14 a holiday. There is an old saying that sums up many of the biblical festivals, “They tried to kill us, we won, let’s eat” (v 17-19).

Then Mordechai wrote down all these events and sent letters to all the Jews in the provinces, obliging them to celebrate Adar 14 and Adar 15 annually (v 21). They would feast, rejoice and send portions of food to the poor, with gifts. Remember, Haman had planned to destroy the Jews, and had cast “lots” (purim) to find the right date to do it. Therefore, they called those days “Purim” meaning “lots.”

These days were to be remembered and celebrated throughout every generation, family, province and city. So letters were sent to all the Jews in all 127 provinces to be celebrated at the appointed time. These customs were established by Esther and written in the book which bears her name. Jewish tradition says that she wanted to include this book among the other sacred writings in the Tanak.

So, now we are going look at how this chapter relates to prophecy and the redemption and see what the Lord was trying to communicate to us through what happened. So, we are going to go back and look at the tens sons of Haman first. As we have said before, Haman is a picture of the False Messiah and his sons are a picture of the ten kings who will rise with him and eventually fall (Dan 7.7, 20, 24; Rev 13.1, 17.12).

Ten is the number of judgment and in Est 9.7-10 we have the names of the ten sons listed. Usually, names are written in block form in Hebrew, showing strength like a wall. But in Esther they are written in a vertical column, showing weakness. You can go to any interlinear Hebrew Bible and see this configuration. We know that this book was written in Hebrew and so many of the things we will be discussing will not be seen in our English bibles, so we suggest you get a copy of the Book of Esther in Hebrew so that you can follow along.

We have already discussed how the book was written in block form (like a wall) until we get to the ten sons of Haman who are killed in Est 9.1-10. Then you will see how they are written in a column form (like a gallows). There will be several letters written differently from the rest of the letters in Hebrew, that you will not see in English. This is what Yeshua was referring to in Matt 5.18. So, let’s go to the last of Haman’s sons listed in v 9 named Vaizatha. In the Hebrew, the first letter of his name is enlarged from the other letters in his name, and it is the letter ‘Vav” which has a “v” sound. The letter “Vav” is the number six in Hebrew and is the number of man and it means, “nail or peg, to secure.” The rabbis teach that the vav was enlarged to show how the ten sons would be impaled, and that is true. This letter in Hebrew looks like a stake or a Persian gallows. We know that the one Haman made for Mordechai was over 80 feet high and there would have been enough room to impale one son on top of another.

Remember, these sons were not hung by a “noose” around the neck. The word “gallows” in English conveys a wrong idea. In Persia, criminals or those sentenced to capital punishment, were impaled on stakes, then they were left there for public view.

As we have said, the vav represents the number six in Hebrew, and this alludes to the number of man, who was created on the sixth day. We see this concept in Rev 13.18 where we see that the number of the False Messiah is the number of a man (six, six, six). Adam was created to be immortal but he sinned and became mortal, and everyone who descended from him was mortal. All the generations of man have now been diminished.

In Gen 2.4 it says, “These are the generations” and the word for generations is “toledot” in Hebrew (tav, vav ,lamed, dalet, vav, tav). After Adam sinned, the word “toledot” (generations) always has a vav (the number of man) missing from the spelling, it is either the first one or the second one. What this is saying is “man’s generations (toledot) is diminished.”

But, when we get to Ruth 4.18 we find something very interesting. The word “toledot” is written out fully once again where it says, “These are the generations of Perez: Perez begot Hezron.” Because of Adam’s sin, man is diminished from the original creation. Messiah will restore man’s generations and the passage of Ruth 4 gives us the genealogy of David, which is the genealogy of Yeshua the Messiah. Through Yeshua, the son of David, man’s generations will be restored. So, the Lord is communicating this fact so “toledot” is written out fully, with both vavs present.

In the Mishkan, when you approached the sanctuary there were five poles. The middle pole was called the “yotaid.” The yotaid was a tent peg, one of the meanings of vav. A vav looked like a nail or peg. The vessels used in the Mishkan services were hung on this pole by these pegs. Scholars have always taught that this pole is a picture of the Messiah.

In Isa 22.15-19 the man named Shebna holds a very important position. He is like the prime minister to the king, but he is thrown out of that position by God violently. In Isa 22.20-23 we learn about Shebna’s replacement named Eliakim. Yeshua can be seen in these passages, and you can see him where Yehovah says in Isa 22.24, “So they hang on him (Messiah-Matt 22.40) all the glory of his father’s house (household of God), offspring and issue, all the least of the vessels, from the bowls to all the jars.” The true Messiah will defeat the False Messiah (the false yotaid) and rule in the Kingdom of God with those who placed their fatih in him. Then in Isa 22.25, it refers back to Shebna, the one removed, and it says that “the peg driven in a firm place will give way, it will even break off and fall, and the load hanging on it (those who depended on him) will be cut off.” He will represent the False Messiah who will fall, taking everyone with him all those who depended or had faith in him.

We will pick up here in our conclusion with more letters in the names of the ten sons of Haman and what they mean in history. We will see that this is an allusion to the ten kings of the False Messiah, but also to the ten Nazis who where hung after the Nuremburg trials.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

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