Megillat Esther in Summary
with Questions: IV, V

IV. Mordekhai Asks Esther to Help Her People

Mordekhai knew of all that had been done, and he tore his clothes and put on sackcloth and ashes, and went out into the center of the city, and cried with a loud and bitter cry. He came up to the king's gate, for it was not allowed for anyone to enter the king's gate clothed with sackcloth.

In every province where the king's commandment and his decree came, there was great mourning among the Jews, and fasting and weeping and wailing, and many put on sackcloth and ashes.

And Esther called Hatakh, one of the king's chamberlains, whom he had appointed to attend on her, and gave him a message for Mordekhai, to learn what this was and why it was. Mordekhai told him all that had happened and of the sum of money that Haman had promised to pay to the king's treasury for destroying the Jews. Esther answered Mordekhai with the following message: Go and gather together all the Jews who are in Shushan, and fast for me, and neither eat nor drink for three days, night and day. I and my maidens will also fast, and so I will go in to the king, though it is against the law -- and if I perish, I perish. Mordekhai went his way, and did all that Esther had bidden him to do.

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1. Why did Esther ask that all the Jews should fast three days?

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2. What else could Esther have asked of Mordekhai?

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V. Esther's Banquet

It was on the third day that Esther put on her royal robes, and stood in the inner court of the king's house, in front of the king's house. The king was sitting on his royal throne in the royal house, opposite the gate of the house. When the king saw Esther the queen standing in the court, she obtained favor in his sight, and the king held out to Esther the golden scepter that was in his hand. And Esther drew near and touched the top of the scepter.

And the king said to her: What is your wish, Queen Esther, and what is your request? It shall be given to you, even up to half the kingdom. And Esther said: If it seems good to the king, let the king and Haman come today to the banquet that I have prepared for him.

And the king said to Esther during the wine banquet: What is your petition and it shall be granted, what is your request, even to half the kingdom, it shall be done. And Esther answered: My petition and my request is -- if I have found favor in the sight of the king, and if it pleases the king to grant my petition and to act according to my request, let the king and Haman come to the banquet that I shall prepare for them, and I will do tomorrow as the king has said. And Haman went out that day joyful and with a glad heart. But when Haman saw Mordekhai in the king's gate and that he did not stand or stir for him, he became full of anger against Mordekhai. And his wife Zeresh and all his friends said to him: Let a gallows be made, fifty cubits high, and tomorrow speak to the king that Mordekhai may be hanged on it, and then go in cheerfully with the king to the banquet. And the thing pleased Haman, and he had the gallows made.

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Why did Queen Esther invite the King and Haman to a banquet?

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From: Purim Resources, edited by Haim Weinreb


 

 

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15 Jun 2005 / 8 Sivan 5765 0