Summary: Mordecai is the Hero behind the Hero named Esther. This sermon is an insightful look at the whole story of Esther with some points for how you can be "The Hero behind the Hero".
The Hero Behind the Hero
Grant van Boeschoten
December 2, 2007
Our message today comes from the book of Esther and the main character is the Hero behind the Hero, Mordecai.
Mordecai was born into captivity. He was a Jew living in Persia, in the city of Susa. Mordecai’s cousin’s Jewsish name was Hadassah, her Persian name was Esther. Esther was orphaned as a little girl and so Mordecai adopted her and treated her as his own daughter.
The name Esther means “Star”, but the Jewish name Hadassah means the two words “lovely” and “beautiful”. When you put those two words together in the Jewish culture you find that they mean “exceedingly beautiful” which was a very good description of Esther.
Mordecai and Esther lived under the rule of King Ahaseurus, (ah has you EH rus). In your Bible it might say Xerxes, but that is simply the greek translation of the word Ahaseurus.
King Ahaseurus was a man of passion who made his decisions in an instant, sometimes with very little foresight. He ruled over 127 provinces from India to Ethiopia and the Pride that was in his heart was evident to everybody.
The story begins with King Ahaseurus throwing a feast, which could be accurately described as a 7 Day Drinking Party. When the King was good and drunk he ordered that his queen Vashti be brought to him so that he could put her on display in front of all of his friends.
Vashti denied the Kings request and the result was that she was removed from her position as Queen. A search began across the land of Persia for all of the beautiful young ladies. These ladies would be added to the King’s Harem, and from them the next Queen would be chosen.
The guards began to look all over the land for the beautiful ladies, and Mordecai and Esther saw that the writing was on the wall. She was going to be added to the Kings harem whether she liked it or not.
But before the guards came to collect her, Mordecai had a very important instruction for his adopted daughter, “Don’t tell anyone that you are a Jew, and if anyone asks, don’t even tell them who your family is. Keep it a secret.”
The guards came and Esther was taken into the harem of King Ahaseuras. When she arrived she was put under the care of a eunuch by the name of Hegai (HEG igh). Esther found favor with Hegai and he provided her with cosmetic treatments, the best portion of foods, and the best place in the harem.
The Bible uses the word Favor to describe how Hegai looked at Esther. It also uses the word favor to describe how God looks at his chosen people. In the Old Testament that was the Jews and in the New Testament that is the Church.
The word favor can accurately be described as “Loyal Love”. Do you know that this is the way that God looks at you if you are a Christian? He has loyal love for you. It does not waver, it does not depend on your actions, and it is loyal to a fault.
Favor is loyal love. When you find somebody who has that kind of love for you it is a wonderful thing. The best families have loyal love operating on all levels. The best Churches treat each member with loyal love.
Favor is one of the best gifts that God gives to us. He loves us, his people, and his love towards us is loyal. It is consistent; it is yesterday today and tomorrow. God’s love towards us is something that we can count on day in and day out.
Esther found favor in the eyes of Hegai, the Eunuch, and she was promoted to the best place in the Harem with the best food, and the best cosmetics and 7 maids to attend to her every need. But she did not reveal to anyone that her father was Mordecai or that she was a Jew.
The amount of time that a women was in the harem before ever seeing the King was 12 months. That gave her 6 months to be treated with oil & myrrh, and 6 months to be treated with perfumes and cosmetics. Esther spent her year of preparation and then it was her turn to meet the King.
Here is where the story gets just a little bit R rated. So I am going to do what the Bible does and spare you the details. The bottom line is that King Ahaseurus really, really liked Esther.
He liked her so much that he made her queen and he gave everyone the day off work. Seriously, King Ahaeurus proclaimed a national holiday and held a feast that he called “Esther’s Banquet.” He put the royal crown on her head and now the beautiful Esther was Queen Esther.