Esther, a strong woman

The word of G-d is full of laws and regulations. “Honor your father and your mother” is even one of the Ten Words, that Moshe (Moses) received from G-d to give to the people of Israel. The Lord said that you have to honor your parents: “….in order that you should live longer in the land that the Lord is going to give to you” (Shemot 20:12/ Exodus 20:12)This month we celebrate the feast of Purim. This feast reminds us the way that the Lord saved Israel by the leadership of the Jewish queen Esther. This queen first was a normal girl. Like all other girls in Persia during those days was Esther called to the palace of king Achasverosh (accent on: rosh), so that the king was able to choose the most beautiful to be his bride.

The king had sent away his wife Vashti, who had been the queen, because she did not want to listen to him. It probably was not only Esther’s beauty that king Achashverosh saw, nut also her character. What he did not know was, that Esther was not a softy. She did not become queen to serve the king and the Persian people, but also because she was going to be able to save her people with the help from G-d.

Watch carefully! Queen Esther follows in this whole story the assignments that her cousin and stepfather Mordechai (accent on chai) her gives. She respects the man whom cared for her after the death of her father and mother. That is why she does what he says. When Mordechai tells Esther that she is not allowed to tell that she is Jewish, she does not do this. Esther does not tell that she is Jewish till the moment that Haman (accent on: man) passes on his evil plans to the king. The wise Mordechai probably knew that this was their salvation! Now the king Esther even more loved that in the beginning and he came to know that Haman wanted to exterminate the people of his wife Esther, he only could choose for Israel!

Esther kept her Jewish identity to herself. Not because she was ashamed of it, but because she wanted at all price to save her people from the enemy. Even if it would cost her her life! This obedient and strong woman was being used by G-d, so Israel today is alive. Without her this would be different. Do you see that Esther’s obedience really led her to a longer life? This however happened in Persia and not in the land that the Lord was going to give: Israel. Whatever, because of Esther’s obedience the Jews were saved and two and a half thousand years later they were able to live in the Promised Land. The Lord keeps His promises! He uses people like Esther, like you and me. Are you ready when He calls you?

Noa Naor, Jerusalem

Verse: Purim is a holiday we need to observe, because “on those days the Jews rid themselves from their enemies, and it was a month which was turned from sorrow into gladness and from mourning into holiday; that they should make them days of feasting and rejoicing and sending portions of food to one another and gifts to the poor.” Esther 9:22