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Bible Commentaries

Arno Gaebelein's Annotated Bible

Esther 7

 

 

Verses 1-10

THE SECOND BANQUET AND HAMAN’S MISERABLE END

CHAPTER 7

1. The second banquet and Esther’s petition (Esther 7:1-4)

2. Haman’s exposure (Esther 7:5-6)

3. Haman’s miserable end (Esther 7:7-10)

Esther 7:1-4. Esther at this second feast knew that the God of her fathers was at work and that all the hatred against her race came not from the heart of the king, but centered in Haman. In the events of the sleepless night and what followed she must have seen the display of the hand of God. And now she utters her delayed petition. Her petition is that her life may be spared as well as her people. How astonished the king must have looked as he gazed upon his beautiful wife and learned from her lips that her life was in danger. And still greater must have been his surprise when he hears, “For we are sold, I and my people, to be destroyed, to be slain, and to perish.” What a scene! The handsome queen, her marvelous earnestness and eloquence in pleading for her life and for her people; the darkening, astonished countenance of the king, the blanching face of Haman and the others in the banquet hall in great excitement.

And her heart-rendering plea, perhaps mingled with tears which coursed down her cheek, did not fail to produce the desired effect.

Esther 7:5-6. The king must have been more than astonished” he must have been angry. Who dared to plot against the life of the beautiful queen and deprive him of her? Who dared to sell her and her people for slaughter? Even then before he hears from Esther the name of the man, he must have realized, that the crouching Haman is the man. “Who is he, and where is he that durst presume in his heart to do so?” Her answer is brief but eloquent. With flashing eyes and pointing her finger to the guest at her side she said, “An adversary and an enemy, even this wicked Haman!” The scene is beyond comparison. Then Haman was afraid before the king and the queen. He anticipated the fearful storm which would break over his head.

Esther 7:7-10. The king arose in his wrath. Close to the banquet hall was the garden. There the king went in the heat of his wrath and the great excitement which had seized upon him and made him speechless. When an oriental king or sultan arises angry from his own table, then there is no mercy for him that causeth it. (See Rosenmueller Oriental Studies on Esther.) In the meantime Haman begs cowardly for his life. He must have fallen at her feet with weeping and wailing. And Esther did not open her lips. Then Haman in his agonizing plea falls upon the couch where Esther was. At that moment the king re-entered the banquet hall. He has regained his speech and when he beholds Haman on the couch he utters a word of bitter sarcasm, as if he had designs upon the honour of the queen. No sooner had the king spoken the word, the attending servants covered Haman’s face. This was a Persian custom. The face of a criminal was covered to indicate that he was no longer worthy to behold the light and that darkness of death would be his lot.

The gallows which Haman had prepared for Mordecai is used for his own execution. Critics point out the statement that the gallows 50 cubits high (80 feet) stood in Haman’s house and they raise the question “How could an 80 foot long pole be gotten into any one’s house?” But the word gallows means in the Hebrew “tree.” Probably a tree standing in the garden of Haman was made ready with a rope to hang the hated Jew. It is characteristic of the critics to take such minor things to discredit the accuracy of Scripture.

Typical Application

Haman illustrates the work and the ignominious end of the final Anti-christ who troubles Israel. Haman had almost succeeded. But when the proper moment came God acted in behalf of His people and Haman falls forever. So that coming man of sin will almost succeed, but in the end of the great tribulation, the final 1260 days or three years and a half, with which this age closes, the power of God will be displayed in the complete victory over this enemy of God and man. Haman’s end came by the decree of the king and the Anti-christ will be destroyed by the coming of the King of kings and Lord of Lords.

 


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Bibliography Information
Gaebelein, Arno Clemens. "Commentary on Esther 7:4". "Gaebelein's Annotated Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/gab/esther-7.html. 1913-1922.

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