Esther 2 picks up with King Xerxes (King Ahasuerus) remembering the rejection he received from Queen Vashti. He recalled his decree to dethrone her and therefore appointed his attendants to search for beautiful young virgins in every province under his leadership to replace her. The selected ladies were to remain under the care of one of his eunuch’s and receive beauty treatments in preparation to meet the king. Whichever young woman pleased the king the most would be deemed the new queen.
Amongst the beautiful young women selected was a young Jewish lady who lived in Susa with her cousin, Mordecai. Mordecai ended up raising this young lady, Hadassah, also known as Esther, due to the death of her father and mother. Scripture tells us that Esther was stunning, so quite naturally she was chosen as one of the many beautiful contenders to be queen.
When selected, Esther immediately won favor in the sight of the king’s eunuch and was given the best place to live amongst all the places that the young women were housed. She, along with the other young ladies, underwent twelve months of beauty treatments—six months of myrrh oil treatments and six months of other cosmetic treatments.
When the time came for Esther to meet King Xerxes, there was no competition—he favored her more than any of the other virgins and dubbed her queen. In his usual manner, the king threw a big party in celebration of his new queen. However, he did not know Queen Esther’s heritage. He did not know that she was a Jew, and her guardian Mordecai advised that she keep it that way. This proves significant as the story unfolds in later chapters.
Before the conclusion of Esther 2, Mordecai learns that two of the king’s officers—Bigthana and Teresh—were plotting to kill the king. Mordecai notified Queen Esther of their plan, and she then notified the king. These allegations were investigated and discovered to be true. Thus, Bigthana and Teresh were sentenced to death and these events were recorded in the book of annals, which was a book kept in the king’s presence.
Although Mordecai wasn’t immediately rewarded for saving the king from death, his deeds were recorded. The same is true for us. There may be times where we feel as if our deeds have gone unnoticed or unrewarded. But all our deeds are recorded, and we will be rewarded for what we have done, be it good or bad. For Hebrews 6:10 tells us that God is not unjust and that he will not forget our work. As we continue reading the Book of Esther, we eventually see that Mordecai’s deeds were also not left unnoticed.
I’d also like to highlight the fact that Esther suffered the loss of both parents and that both she and Mordecai were victims of exile. They both endured hard times and heartache. Yet, God put Esther in the right place at the right time to be queen. She was chosen not only to be queen but to, more importantly, be in the lineage of Jesus Christ.
This illustrates that nothing can stop the plan of God from coming into fruition—not exile, not death of loved ones, not an irate and prideful king who divorces his wife, or even the competition that Esther had amongst the other beautiful women. God purposed to bring Christ into the world, and it was meant to happen despite the many challenges that existed prior to Christ’s birth.
The text also demonstrates that we should never lose hope. I imagine the pain that Esther suffered from losing her parents was great. I also imagine that being forced into exile was no pleasant journey. And yet, despite the difficult times, God’s hand was in the plan. If Esther would have given up in her challenging season, she might’ve never witnessed the beautiful plan God had in store for her.
Lastly, I think there is something to be said about those beauty treatments. Before any of the selected young ladies met the king, they had to undergo an enhancement process. They were already beautiful, but they had to step it up a notch for the king. Likewise, God’s chosen people are already beautiful. Psalms 149:4 (KJV) states, “the LORD will beautify the meek with salvation.” So, if you have salvation, you have beauty.
And yet, there are many who have accepted salvation through Christ, but they do not live holy. Before we meet our King, we can add to the beauty of our salvation by walking in holiness. 1 Chronicles 16:29 (KJV) states, “… worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness.” Psalms 29:2 and Psalm 96:9 echoes the same thing. Therefore, to be holy is to be beautiful.
So, let us add to our beauty. Like Esther and the other beautiful young ladies, let’s prepare to meet our king by beautifying what we already have. If you have salvation through Christ, you are already beautiful. But in preparation of one day meeting our King, let’s add beauty (holiness) to our beauty (salvation). That way, we can be an awesome representation of the King’s chosen beauties on the earth. This way, we can indeed be beyond beautiful.
Quin Arrington is a Christian, a wife, a mother, and an author. Her books are available on Amazon.
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Thank you for your time. God Bless!