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Bible Commentaries

James Nisbet's Church Pulpit Commentary

Esther 3



Verse 5


‘Haman saw that Mordecai bowed not.’

Esther 3:5

I. A sturdy soul was Mordecai.—He was not going to give a prostration of homage, which he reserved for God alone, to the haughty noble who sprang from the hated race of Amalek.

II. What a contrast within and without the palace when the decree was signed!—Within, revelry, the king and Haman sat down to drink. Without, perplexity and alarm, for who could anticipate what the near future might disclose, if the king could sacrifice an entire nation for the whim of a favourite? But God was standing ‘within the shadow, keeping watch above His own.’ For

III. They always lose who fight against God.—They may be great, like Haman. They may be able, unscrupulous, ambitious. They may exact homage from every one. The chances are, we say, that they shall march from success to success. But the Lord of hosts is their antagonist. His boundless power, His sovereign authority, His invincible might, are opposed to them. So it is our safety never to ally ourselves with them.

IV. They always win who side with God.—They may be forgotten and despised, like Mordecai at the gate. But they are ruled by principle and conscience. They cannot give honour to what is not true, what is not honest, what is not good. ‘The short man who could not bow,’ Oliver Cromwell said of James Guthrie, and it is their character. All things work together for these men’s good. The system of nature, the ordinances of grace, the Holy Spirit within the soul, the Saviour on the throne—these are their friends. ‘’Tis better,’ Robert Browning sings, ‘being good than bad.’


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These files are public domain.
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Bibliography Information
Nisbet, James. "Commentary on Esther 3:4". Church Pulpit Commentary. 1876.

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