Posted tagged ‘Esther’

“Widows”, “Fatherless”,”Strangers” (and “Poor”): A Spiritual Understanding of the Biblical Books of Ruth and Esther: Jesus Is in Both Books!

September 16, 2022
The casting of “pur” or “lot” in the Book of Esther is like the rolling of dice, but as we know from Proverbs 16:33, “The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of the Lord.

The Only Two Books With Women’s Names

It is far more than mere coincidence that the only two books in the entire Bible which are named after women, Ruth and Esther, also happen to provide historical accounts of women who are, respectively,  “widows” (Ruth and Naomi, and Ruth was also a “stranger”, and because they were destitute they were also most certainly “poor”) and “fatherless” (Esther was an orphan raised up by her elder cousin, Mordecai).  Why is that?  We can begin to find the answer by searching God’s word, the Bible, to find that in Psalm 68:5, God declares, “A father of the fatherless, and a judge of the widows, [is] God in his holy habitation.” Then in Jeremiah 49:11, “Leave thy fatherless children, I will preserve [them] alive; and let thy widows trust in me.”  In Zechariah 7:8-10 we read, “And the word of the Lord came unto Zechariah, saying, Thus speaketh the Lord of hosts, saying, Execute true judgment, and shew mercy and compassions every man to his brother: And oppress not the widow, nor the fatherless, the stranger, nor the poor; and let none of you imagine evil against his brother in your heart.” Also in Psalms 10:13&14, “Wherefore doth the wicked contemn God? he hath said in his heart, Thou wilt not require [it]. Thou hast seen [it]; for thou beholdest mischief and spite, to requite [it] with thy hand: the poor committeth himself unto thee; thou art the helper of the fatherless.

In Psalm 146:9,The LORD preserveth the strangers; he relieveth the fatherless and widow: but the way of the wicked he turneth upside down.”  

Moreover back in Deuteronomy 10:17-19 we read, “For the Lord your God is God of gods, and Lord of lords, a great God, a mighty, and a terrible, which regardeth not persons, nor taketh reward: He doth execute the judgment of the fatherless and widow, and loveth the stranger, in giving him food and raiment. Love ye therefore the stranger: for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt.

We also read in the New Testament in James 1:2, “Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, [and] to keep himself unspotted from the world.” Moreover, God classifies them together with the “stranger” as we read in Deuteronomy 27:19, “Cursed be he that perverteth the judgment of the stranger, fatherless, and widow. And all the people shall say, Amen.”  Finally we read in Jeremiah 20:13, “Sing unto the LORD, praise ye the LORD: for he hath delivered the soul of the poor from the hand of evildoers.”

In each of the two historical accounts provided in the books of Esther and Ruth, we will see God’s mercy and providence bestowed on those who would otherwise be entirely destitute and without any hope apart from God’s mercy alone.  Moreover, God is not mentioned once in Esther and only alluded to a few times in Ruth.  The best explanation is that God deliberately chose to remain hidden from direct view when dealing with those two women, who each are chosen as allegorical representatives of God’s beloved eternal Bride (the elect of God, His church).  Nonetheless, God’s providential care, mercy, and love for His Bride shines forth brightly for all to see.

Those two earthly, historically accurate, accounts of God’s providential mercy and lover for the destitute “fatherless” orphan (Esther) and “widows” (Naomis and Ruth, and Ruth as a “Moabitess“, was also a “stranger”) were provided by God in the Books of Esther and Ruth to typify His magnificent salvation plan, in which God displays His eternal spiritual mercy and love, by grace alone, to destitute sinners, who would otherwise be entirely without hope apart from the Person and Work of the Lord Jesus Christ.  Each book displays God’s complete mastery over time and space, involving supernatural ironies and challenges to faith, that glorify God in the process, and give us insights into Who God Is, and about His love for His saints, His Bride (the church), as made possible only through the intercessional and substitutional sacrifice of His Beloved Son, Jesus Christ. Jesus came to save sinners, and all of us are sinners, who are by nature (due to the original sin)…and destitute spiritual “widows”, “orphans”, “strangers” and “poor”.   However, by God’s grace alone, through the Person and Work of the Lord Jesus Christ alone, salvation is obtained for those whom God the Father draws to Jesus according to John 6:44.

A detailed exposition on the Book of Esther has already been produced that can be found here: https://bereansearching.wordpress.com/2009/09/19/an-exposition-of-the-book-of-esther/. In that exposition it is shown that Esther, as an otherwise destitute “fatherless” orphan, was established by God as a typological representation of the body of believers from throughout the world (both Jews and Gentiles) who would ultimately co-share in God’s Kingdom as the Bride of Jesus Christ. In this historical “parable”, Mordechai, Esther’s elder, and nearest living relative, served as a nurturing savior to Esther, and guided her and her people in a time of great affliction to safety from their mortal enemies.  Mordechai, who was eventually elevated to the right hand of the King in glory and honor, is shown in that exposition to have been clearly and unequivocally established by God as a typological representation of the Lord Jesus Christ.

But what about Ruth?  It has already been pointed out by another writer, Warren W Wiersbe,[1] that there are some amazing twists and counterpoints when the two books are viewed together from the purely historical perspective.  Wiersbe correctly points out in one example that first, “The Book of Ruth tells the story of a Gentile who married a Jew and became ancestress of the Messiah (Jesus Christ),” while, “The book of Esther introduces us to a Jewess who married a Gentile and was used of God to save the Jewish nation from destruction so that the Messiah (Jesus Christ) could be born.” Both accounts are miraculous and glorify God in the events and the recording of them.

[1] Warren W. Wiersbe, Be Committed: An Old Testament Study- Ruth And Esther, SP Publications, Inc, 1993 (ISBN 1-56476-067-7)

But what about the spiritual perspective as was already exposited for Esther?  Are there similar parallels that we might find in the Book of Ruth?

Yes!, Indeed there are! Please see the newly completed study of the Book of Ruth here: https://bereansearching.com/2011/09/21/widowsstrangers-and-poor-a-spiritual-understanding-of-the-book-of-ruth/

A Spiritual Understanding of The Book of Ruth

September 21, 2011

Gleaners

The Gleaners by Jean Francois Millet

An Exposition of the Book of Ruth: God’s Mercy to”Widows”,”Strangers” (and “Poor”)

Another Book of Prophesy that Reveals God’s Magnificent Plan of Salvation Through the Person and Work of The Lord Jesus Christ: Like Boaz to Ruth, Jesus Is the Believer’s Kinsman Redeemer!

Background:

The Book of Ruth is read every year to the assembled congregations of the Jewish people in their synagogues to the present day.  It is read as part of the celebration of the Feast of Weeks (Shavuot…The Feast of Weeks is the second of the three pilgrim festivals ordained in the Old Testament after Passover and before the end of the year Feast of Tabernacles). The Feast of Weeks is known by Christians as the Feast of Pentecost.  The Feast is celebrated at the end of the barley harvest (or time of the “first fruits”) and it is the time of year when the most critical period in the Book of Ruth takes place, when Ruth meets Boaz, Ruth’s and Naomi’s kinsman-redeemer.  And just like the Book of Esther, the Book of Ruth has both an earthly (historical) and a Heavenly (spiritual) meaning, and hence it is also an historical “parable.” While the Book of Ruth does provide an account of an actual period in history, it was nonetheless written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and it has been incorporated into God’s Holy Word, the Bible.  It is a vignette orchestrated by God in the first instance (historically), and written down as precisely crafted in the Bible in the second instance (spiritually), to fulfill God’s own purposes.

Why Did God Include the Book of Ruth in the Bible?

Perhaps the most important of God’s purposes for providing us with the Book of Ruth was to convey, in one short, four chapter, literal historical account, some critical elements of God’s magnificent salvation plan (albeit by typological, allegorical, and parabolic means).

Moreover, that message as found in the Book of Ruth is the same Gospel message that can be found everywhere else in the Bible, as it focuses on the Person and Work of the Lord Jesus Christ.  The only difference is that, each time Jesus is intricately interwoven and having otherwise been hidden in the Bible, once Jesus Christ is subsequently revealed by the Holy Spirit according to John 16:13, and John 14:26 we can learn more about Jesus and God’s Gospel plan through Him (which glorifies God in the process as we know from Pro 25:2).  However, to truly “see” Jesus (to believe with our hearts and not just our minds), we must have our spiritual eyes “opened” by God.  Given that this can indeed be the case, then another purpose for God having provided us with the Book of Ruth is that it will edify, comfort, and strengthen the faith of the saints (the believers).

The Book of Ruth also provides the believer with additional insights into God’s providence, as well as His mercy and grace to “the widows and strangers and poor”…even to an otherwise cursed “Moabitess”… representing all of the humbled sinful outcasts descended from Adam whom Jesus saves from the just penalty for their sins who would otherwise be consigned to Hell.  It expands on Jesus’s role as the Kinsman Redeemer of His saints, who are taken from all of humankind, made up from both a remnant of national Israel and the Gentile nations in the whole world.

The book of Ruth also provides us with insights on Jesus’s genealogy, and, therefore, how Jesus is intimately linked to sinful mankind through a variety of quite sordid events, showing us, as we read in 2 Corthinians 5:21, “For he hath made him [to be] sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

As an introduction, let’s first briefly look at the ten key persons in the order of their appearance, and then the historical narrative plot line:

1) Elimelech: The Jewish husband of Naomi, who’s name means, “my God is King” who led his family away from Bethlehem-Judah on a sojourn to Moab during the time of the Judges and who suffers an untimely death in Moab.

2) Naomi: The wife of Elimelech, and the mother of his two sons, who becomes a “widow indeed” in Moab. A Jewish woman whose name means, “my God is Sweet(ness)”.

3) Mahlon: The first named son of Elimelech and Naomi, whose name means “sickness” who married Ruth, a Moabitess woman after his father died, and then himself suffers an untimely death.

4) Chilion: The second named son of Elimelech and Naomi, whose name means “consumption.” who married, Orpah, a Moabitess woman after his father died, and then himself also suffers an untimely death.

5) Orpah: The Moabitess wife (soon widowed) of Chilion, whose name is unclear meaning either “mane” or “her neck(?)” or “gazelle“?

6) Ruth: The Moabitess wife (soon widowed) of Mahlon, whose name means variously, “Satisfied” or “Friendship”. (Ruth is also a “stranger” in Israel). Boaz calls her “daughter” and a “virtuous woman.”

7) Boaz: The rich and “mighty” kinsman redeemer of Elimelech’s Jewish family born in Bethlehem, (the “House of Bread”), whose name, “Boaz”, means “in him is strength” (after whom, it would appear, is named one of the two pillars in the porch of Solomon’s temple per 1Kings 7:21), and who married Ruth (the then Moabitess widow), and who ultimately became the progenitor (great-grandfather) of King David (and is the direct line ancestor/progenitor (from David’s son Nathan through to Mary) of the Lord Jesus Christ). Matthew 1:5 also tells us that Boaz (Booz) is descended from Salmon (also “Salma”) and Rachab (“Rahab”, the “harlot”, who received, and was spared from the destruction of Jericho by, the spies in Joshua’s time).  It is unclear why 1Chronicles  2:11-12 omits mentioning Rahab as Salmon’s wife.

NOTE: God specifically called the above last point to our attention in Matthew to show how both David and Jesus’s lineage are intimately linked to sinful mankind (via multiple sordid events alluded to earlier)…Both David, and hence Jesus, are descended through

1) the adulterous fornication of Judah with Tamar, who Judah (who at the time was a widower) thought was a harlot, but was actually was his widowed daughter-in-law who bore Pharaz (who notably is also a progenitor of Boaz); and

2) the Gentile harlot Rahab from Jericho (who was also a progenitor of Boaz); and

3) the incestuous birth of Moab via inebriated Lot with one of his two daughters after Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed (Ruth, “the Moabitess” who bore Obed to Boaz), and

4) David also evidently bore Nathan (the full brother of King Solomon, and who was the ancestor of Jesus’s mother, Mary, according to Luke 3:31 of Bathshua (Bathsheba) according to 1 Chronicles 3:5. David took Bathsheba to wife after first having defiled her, impregnated her, and then having her first husband, Uriah the Hittite, killed in battle.  God actually highlights these sinful and sordid aspects of Jesus’s lineage to make clear to us the point that Jesus is intimately identified with sinful mankind, even though He Himself “knew no sin”, for our edification and for His Glory as we read in 2 Corinthians 5:21, “For he hath made him [to be] sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.“. (Note that the repetitive use of “the son” in the genealogy of Luke 3:31 is in italics, as it was an assumption by the King James translators, but clearly is erroneous given that it must be the genealogy of Mary as opposed to that of Joseph (Jesus’s stepfather) in Matthew 1:6, where the genealogy deviates with King Solomon (and also note that there are no insertions of “the son”))

And regarding Rahab, we know that she was fully adopted/assimilated into national Israel, the people of God, as we read in Joshua 6:22-25, “But Joshua had said unto the two men that had spied out the country, Go into the harlot’s house, and bring out thence the woman, and all that she hath, as ye sware unto her. And the young men that were spies went in, and brought out Rahab, and her father, and her mother, and her brethren, and all that she had; and they brought out all her kindred, and left them without the camp of Israel. And they burnt the city with fire, and all that [was] therein: only the silver, and the gold, and the vessels of brass and of iron, they put into the treasury of the house of the Lord. And Joshua saved Rahab the harlot alive, and her father’s household, and all that she had; and she dwelleth in Israel [even] unto this day; because she hid the messengers, which Joshua sent to spy out Jericho.

We also have these two verses in the New Testament, Hebrews 11:31, “By faith the harlot Rahab perished not with them that believed not, when she had received the spies with peace.”  and James 2:25, “Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent [them] out another way?” So then, Rahab was accepted into the nation of Israel to such an extent that she was able to marry into the royal family of Judah. She married Salmon, the son of Nahshon (“Naasson” in the Matthew 1:4). Nahshon was the leader of the tribe of Judah and commanded their army and was specifically called the “prince of the children of Judah” in 1 Chronicles 2:10. He was also a close associate of Moses and Joshua, and his sister, Elisheba, was married to Aaron, the first high priest according to Exodus 6:23. Rahab’s life is another remarkable spiritual portrait of the bride of Christ, because we know that Jesus is the “Prince of Peace” for eternal Israel though the lineage of Judah Isaiah 9:6.

And for the Jewish nation, Rahab came to serve as a successful Gentile conversion to, and assimilation into, Judaism. Her desire to seek divine mercy to spare her life and those of her family serves as a great example of conversion and salvation. God hates sin, but he saves the sinner.  He knows how to save those that love Him and desire to serve Him. 2 Timothy 1:9 tells us that Jesus, “Who hath saved us, and called [us] with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel:

8) The unnamed servant of Boaz who was set over the reapers: the person who served as headmaster of the maidens and who gave the account of Ruth’s status and actions to Boaz.

9) The unnamed nearer kinsman to Naomi who refused to serve as the kinsman redeemer.  He refused the role because he did not want to take a Moabitess (Ruth) as his wife.

10) Obed: The son of Boaz and Ruth, whose name means “servant”, “worshipper”, or “follower.” Obed is representative of all of God’s children, who become saved, and are both the offspring and the bride as a result of the predetermined marriage of Jesus Christ with his church.  All believers, who are the children of God, are also servants, worshippers, and followers of the Lord Jesus Christ.  It could not be any other way. Obed’s name was no accident, as we should have all learned from all the Bible studies posted here, in that all of the names of persons recorded in the Bible were never accidental or incidental.  Each name carries with it an intended meaning that is carefully woven into the tapestry of God’s Magnificent Salvation Plan.

The Historical Narrative Plot Summary:

The story of Ruth begins in the day of the Judges, likely near the earlier part of the roughly 300 year period between ~1400 BC and ~1100 BC given that Boaz was evidently born to Rahab (the “harlot” of Joshua’s day) multiple generations before the birth of David in about 1037 BC.  It was also during a time of famine in the land that included Bethlehem (which literally means “house of bread”) and likely during the time of Gideon, because it was only in his days that we read of a famine caused by the Midianites’ invasion, Judges 6:3, 4.  The famine evidently led Elimelech to choose to leave Bethlehem in Judah and move to Moab in search of sustenance for his family.  We read early in Chapter 1 that Elimelech soon died, and then, subsequently, his only two sons, Mahlon and Chilion, each took wives from the women from Moab (Ruth and Orpah respectively), which was another grievous sin in contradiction to God’s edict as stated in Deuteronomy 23:3, “An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD; even to their tenth generation shall they not enter into the congregation of the LORD forever:”  The next thing we read is that within a period in which they dwelled of about “ten years” (the number ten symbolizes a time period of “completeness”) both of the two sons soon die, and they each also leave behind no children (no heirs).  As a result, Naomi had become a widow, and Naomi’s two daughters-in-law were also now both young widows without having borne any children.

Naomi fully realized her state of destitution (and according to the Bible, see: 1Timothy 5:5, Naomi was a “widow indeed”, having been made bereft of both her husband and her children, and therefore of any hope of either financial support or livelihood) and so Naomi decided to return to Bethlehem, because she had heard that, by the grace of God, there was again bread available there.  But to Ruth and Orpah she said, “Go, return each to her mother’s house: the LORD deal kindly with you, as ye have dealt with the dead, and with me. The LORD grant you that ye may find rest, each [of you] in the house of her husband. Then she kissed them; and they lifted up their voice, and wept.

The immediate reaction from her daughters-in-law, was that they would accompany her to Bethlehem.  Nonetheless, Naomi warned them of the hazards and hardships with respect to finding a husband, etc. (although not stated, as Moabitesses, they would likely be treated like lepers in Israel), and then she instructed her daughters-in-law to return to the homes of their mothers to find “rest”.  Orpah, sadly, went back to Moab, but, despite the recommendation of Naomi to Ruth, “Behold, thy sister in law is gone back unto her people, and unto her gods: return thou after thy sister in law.” Ruth stood fast and, despite that last admonition from Naomi, made it clear that she was determined and would stay with Naomi when she said, “….thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God:, and then finished with this statement, “Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the LORD do so to me, and more also, [if ought] but death part thee and me.”

The two widows went together to Bethlehem, and were greeted by the townspeople who wondered what had happened to Naomi (she was entirely alone except for Ruth “the Moabitess”, a “stranger” in the land of Israel).  Naomi made the point of saying that she had come back home out of the land of Moab entirely empty, and moreover, that they should no longer refer to her as Naomi (“sweet”) but rather Mara, meaning “bitter”, because, “the Almighty hath dealt very bitterly with me.”

In the second chapter of Ruth, we immediately learn of Naomi’s “kinsman” by marriage, Boaz, a “mighty man of wealth.”   And Ruth suggests that she go out humbly as a beggar to glean the fields of “corn” (likely the barley) where she also describes her hope of finding “grace” in the eyes of the owner of the field.  By what appeared to be happenstance (“hap” meaning “by chance”, in Chapter 2, verse 3) she was gleaning in a part of the field belonging to that very man Boaz.

Moreover, after Ruth had been working hard in the fields after humbly asking the headmaster of the reapers for permission to glean, Boaz came from Bethlehem and took notice of her.  He asks the details from the headmaster and then goes to Ruth, and though she be a “stranger” in Israel, Boaz calls her “Daughter”, and tells her to stay close to his maiden reapers and not go to any other fields. He also tells Ruth that the men won’t harm her, and that she may have of the water that the men will bring for the reapers to drink.

Ruth responded by throwing herself to the ground and bowing before Boaz, and humbly asking him why he had shown her such grace, given that she was a “stranger”? Boaz responded with the statement that he was fully aware of the kindness she had shown to Naomi, as well as the fact that she had left behind all her family to come to live with people she had never known before. Boaz blesses her in the name of the God of Israel, under whose wings she had come to trust.

Ruth was overwhelmed and thanked Boaz and spoke of his amazing kindness in treating her as though she was one of his maiden reapers. Boaz added that at lunchtime she could sit and eat with the reapers as well. Later she did eat with the reapers and was full.  After she left to go back to gleaning, Boaz took the additional step of telling his male reapers not to hinder or prevent Ruth from gleaning in any way, and moreover to deliberately drop handfuls of harvested grain to the ground that Ruth could pick them up.  That evening, Ruth was able to have her apron filled with a large amount (an “ephah”, probably something like a basketful) of barley.

Ruth took the barley home to Naomi, who after being filled, asked Ruth in whose fields she had gleaned and who it was that had shown her such kindness.  When Ruth told Naomi it was Boaz, Naomi immediately replied, “Blessed be he of the LORD, and that Boaz had not forgotten the living and the dead,” and that Boaz was a relative and hence a “near kinsman” (גָּאַל (gā’al)H1350 , the same word as “redeemer”).  Naomi said that it was good that Ruth obey Boaz in all as he had told her to do.  Ruth did so.

In the third chapter, we learn that Naomi has a plan by which, if Ruth properly prepares herself and then goes into the threshing floor at night when Boaz is sleeping after a harvest dinner, then she could make clear to Boaz that she is available to have as his wife by the rule of kinsmanship by laying at his feet.  Ruth followed Naomi’s instructions and, about midnight, Boaz was startled and woke up and asked who she was. She replied that she was Ruth and, in essence, asked him to do the service of a kinsman in marrying her.  Boaz immediately blessed her for her showing kindness to him (as he was evidently an old man) and that it was clear she was also interested in the duties of raising children in the name of Elimelech. He also said that everyone in Bethlehem knew that she was a virtuous woman (a requirement for a Godly wife according to Proverbs 12:4, “A virtuous woman [is] a crown to her husband: but she that maketh ashamed [is] as rottenness in his bones.” and Proverbs 31:10, Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price [is] far above rubies.“). While Boaz stated his willingness to fulfill her request, he cautioned Ruth that there was a “nearer” kinsman who was entitled to a first right of refusal.  If that kinsman accepted Ruth, then so be it, otherwise Boaz would be happy to marry Ruth. The chapter ends with Boaz providing her with six measures of barley as a gift for Naomi.  When Ruth brings the barley in the early morning to Naomi, Naomi instructs Ruth to be patient and sit still.  It is clear to Naomi what Boaz intends to do…and that Boaz will not rest until he finishes the business before the day ends.

In the fourth and last chapter, Boaz went to the gate of the city and calls to the man who is the nearest kinsman, and also calls ten elders of the city to be witnesses to the ensuing discussion, upon which the twelve men sat down together.  When the nearest kinsman is asked by Boaz if he would be willing to serve as a kinsman redeemer for the dead relative, Elimelech, and to purchase from the hand of Naomi some land in Judah previously belonging to Elimelech, the man said yes. But then Boaz said whenever the kinsman purchases the land, he must also fulfill the duties of the near kinsman redeemer and marry the widow of the line to raise up children in the name of the deceased.  That meant the kinsman must marry Ruth, “the Moabitess.”  That was the deal breaker, and the man ceremonially refused to accept his nearest kinsman opportunity in accordance with Deuteronomy 25:5-10 “loose his shoe from off his foot”, and thereby passed the role of kinsman redeemer to Boaz.  Boaz immediately announced to all who were in hearing that this day he would serve as the kinsman redeemer for Elimelech and his two sons.  Moreover he made clear that they would all be witnesses to his intent to purchase as part of that inheritance, “Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of Mahlon” to be his wife, in order to raise up children as an inheritance in the name of the dead men (Mahlon and therefore also Elimelech). The people in the city rejoiced at this, and offered many blessings pertaining to the tribe of Judah.  Subsequently, Boaz and Ruth were married and had a son, named Obed.  Naomi was able to hold the baby boy, as her redemptive grandson, in her arms.  The women proclaimed that Ruth was to Naomi better than seven sons. Obed grew up to become the father of Jesse, who became the father of King David…hence Ruth and Boaz were genealogical ancestors of the Lord Jesus Christ (through David’s son Nathan down to Mary, Luk 3:31).

So where do we “see” Jesus in the Book of Ruth, and What are the Spiritual Identities of Each Person In the Book of Ruth?:

If we compare this literal, historical account with the rest of the Bible, we can find some amazing and unequivocal spiritual parallels and correlations between the following:

1) Boaz with the Lord Jesus Christ (as the Kinsman Redeemer of all believers, who otherwise, apart from God’s intervening grace, would have remained “widows indeed”)

2) Ruth “the Moabitess” with the body of believers (the remnant from the Gentile nations; as an in-grafted Jew of the eternal Israel) and hence representative of the church, the eternal bride of Jesus Christ. (Who would have otherwise remained destitute (estranged from a husband) and under the curse of God as a stranger in Israel, as God frequently reminds us through His repetitive use of the term “Moabitess”)

3) Naomi, a Jewish widow, with the “remnant” of the Nation of Israel, who repent and come to God on His terms and who are saved by the grace of God to also have an equal inheritance in the eternal Israel, and hence who, by redemption, are also a full partaker in the eternal spiritual marriage with Jesus Christ.

4) The unnamed servant of Boaz (who was set as headmaster over the reapers) with the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit provides a watch, and guidance, and intercession for the believers while they are here on Earth while they work in the fields of humankind.  The Holy Spirit Communes with Jesus and intercedes for the believers with God.  In Romans 8:26, we read, “Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.”

5) Obed, as the first born son of Boaz by Ruth, with all believers who are the result of the marriage between Jesus and His church, hence his name means “servant” and “worshipper.”

6) Elimelech, as a type, or figure, possibly of Adam, but more likely Old Testament National Israel, which rejected the Bread of Life, Jesus Christ, and who fell into spiritual adultery and sin as typified by his leaving Bethlehem and moving to Moab, his resulting untimely death, and the his two sons, his only progeny, subsequently each going on to marry Moabitish women and then both similarly suffering untimely deaths without heirs.

It is Jesus Christ who is the believers’ Kinsman Redeemer.  Jesus, a Jew descended from Judah, was born in Bethlehem (the “House of Bread”).  Jesus specifically announced that He was the “Bread of Life” in John 6:35 and 6:48 (and moreover that Jesus made it clear to His hearers that “the manna from heaven” was an allegorical representation or “typepointing to Him!).  Jesus established the New Covenant symbols of bread and wine to represent His Body and Blood.   It is Jesus of Whom we must be partakers to have eternal life.  Jesus is also the “Mighty Man of Wealth”!  Jesus was  a Jew, born in Bethlehem in the land given to Judah (just as Boaz was) and Jesus is described as the Lion of Judah…He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords…the cattle on a thousand hills belong to Him…He is the Creator of the Universe!  Jesus shows grace to destitute sinners as typified by “widows” throughout the Bible, who humbly come as supplicants, hungering and thirsting, for that grace.  Moreover the believers are chosen from a remnant of the world, both Jew and Gentile, and are viewed by God as the only true “Jews” (the true believers in Christ (Jesus is the Messiah), please see Rom 2:28-29) and they alone will find eternal rest in Him.  We also know that the believers are referred to throughout the Bible as the Bride of Christ (and Jesus Christ is also God).  That bride is described in the Bible with the attributes ascribed to Ruth (e.g., virtuous).  Jesus Christ imputes His righteousness to sinful mankind, and therefore, in God’s sight, all believers become “virtuous” as described in detail in Proverbs 31:10-31.

Biblical Validation of the Ruth Exposition: Taking a Closer Look to See the Spiritual Implications

The preceding review was not written with any presumption that this author understands every nuance of the Book of Ruth.  No one (other than God Himself) can ever claim the ability to plumb the depths of the riches of God’s word, the Bible.  However, this writer is confident that if we humbly, faithfully, approach the Bible with no other pre-suppositions than that God is the sole author of the Bible, then we can begin to see by that faith (albeit as through a glass darkly) the truths that God has hidden within His word.  As we have already learned, there is so much more to the Bible than meets the “physical” eye, and it is NEVER just an intellectual exercise. We must have first been given the “spiritual” eyes to see by God the Holy Spirit to really see what God is saying beyond the worldly aspects.  The Bible itself uses such terms such as “mystery” and “dark sayings” to describe how it has been uniquely crafted by God in a magnificent, and yes, even a mysterious way, whereby He has deliberately veiled or hidden the true spiritual meanings of its passages from those whom He has not given the “spiritual eyes and ears.” Please see: https://bereansearching.com/2021/12/29/the-hearing-ear-and-the-seeing-eye/.

The following is, by God’s mercy, this writer’s best effort to explain that hidden truth.

Chapter 1

Note that the very first verse starts out with, “Now it came to pass in the days when the judges ruled, that there was a famine in the land. And a certain man of Bethlehemjudah went to sojourn in the country of Moab, he, and his wife, and his two sons.”  This introduction makes it sound like we are reading about some kind of random event in time, or something akin to “Once upon a time” as in a simple fairy tale.  Nothing could be farther from the truth!  Everything that occurs in time and space, and in this case as also written down precisely in the Bible, was and is entirely orchestrated by the hand of God according to His Will.

The events that follow occurred in this material world, within the course of both time and space, but most certainly not by happenstance.  There are 24 verses in the Bible that begin with “Now it came to pass“, and the specific phrase “it came to pass” is found 453 times in the Bible.  In each instance, when we see this phrase, we are being notified by God that He is signifying that an important event that is about to take place. Some examples include in Genesis 4:8, right after the phrase “it came to pass” that “Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.” or in Genesis 24:15, where right after Abraham’s servant prayed for a sign from God to show him who would be Isaac’s wife, “And it came to pass, before he had done speaking, that, behold, Rebekah came out, who was born to Bethuel, son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, with her pitcher upon her shoulder.” There are many, many, others such key events, and would be profitable for any curious Bible student to search them out with an online Bible search tool such as https://www.blueletterbible.org

These historical accounts happened as God ordained, and they were recorded precisely as God ordained. They were written “aforetime” for us, as we read in Romans 15:4, “For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.” In 1 Corinthians 10:11 we read, “Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.” and in 2 Timothy 3:16&17, “All scripture [is] given by inspiration of God, and [is] profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.” (Note: the word “ensamples” is from the Greek word “τύπος” týpos, too’-pos; from G5180 which means a “type” or “figure” or “model” or “example” of something of greater substance.  The Bible is full of “Types” [or allegories] that are written for our edification, exhortation, and warning.)

As was stated earlier, the story of Ruth took place in the day of the Judges, possibly about the time of Gideon, during a time of famine in the land.  The famine evidently led Elimelech to choose to move to Moab in search of sustenance.  It would seem then that Elimelech had made a particularly bad decision in response to the famine that God had sent.  Elimelech had turned his back on the essence of all true sustenance, the House of Bread, and instead turned to the world as is typified by Moab.  And God uses famines as punishment for His people when they turn from Him and put His words behind them. Moreover, and more importantly, famine is used by God to represent something else “spiritually.”  We read in Amos 8:11, “Behold, the days come, saith the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD:”. When we fail to seek the Lord first, and fail to trust in Him alone, and instead look to the world for our help in times of trouble; God will send a famine of the hearing of His Word (as is found in the Bible) and we will suffer spiritually as a result.

God Cursed Moab!

Moreover Moab was a foreign territory that was inhabited by a people whom God had cursed, as we read in: “Deuteronomy 23:3-6, “An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD; even to their tenth generation shall they not enter into the congregation of the LORD for ever:  Because they met you not with bread and with water in the way, when ye came forth out of Egypt; and because they hired against thee Balaam the son of Beor of Pethor of Mesopotamia, to curse thee. Nevertheless the LORD thy God would not hearken unto Balaam; but the LORD thy God turned the curse into a blessing unto thee, because the LORD thy God loved thee. Thou shalt not seek their peace nor their prosperity all thy days for ever.”  (Remember also that both Moab and Ammon were the sons of Lot, after his wife became a pillar of salt during the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah.  Lot’s daughters assumed that they were the only people left on the earth, and so they decided to get their father drunk so they could lie with him and conceive children by him…Moab and Ammon were the result of those incestuous acts.  See Genesis 19:30-38). [SIDE NOTE: It is also interesting that if one does a careful review of the geneology from Jacob (who was the son of Isaac, and who was also the same generation as Moab, the son of Lot, and Isaac’s Cousin) down to Boaz, the number of generations can be shown to be nine (see Matthew Chapter 1: 2-5 and Luke 3:32-34).  However, Ruth was young enough to be the daughter of Boaz, so she would have been of the next generation…the tenth generation.  It would therefore seem that God was showing us that God’s curse on Moab stopped with Ruth’s generation.]

We read early in Chapter 1 that Elimelech soon died, and then his sons each took wives from the women from Moab (Ruth and Orpah respectively), which was another grievous sin in contradiction to God’s edict as stated in Deuteronomy, Chapter 23.  It is also worthwhile to review Ezra 9:1 &2, ““Now when these things were done, the princes came to me, saying, The people of Israel, and the priests, and the Levites, have not separated themselves from the people of the lands, [doing] according to their abominations, [even] of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Jebusites, the Ammonites, the Moabites, the Egyptians,and the Amorites. For they have taken of their daughters for themselves, and for their sons: so that the holy seed have mingled themselves with the people of [those] lands: yea, the hand of the princes and rulers hath been chief in this trespass.”

The next thing we read is that both of the two sons soon die and also leave behind no children (no heirs) and it is clear that God had condemned them to death as a sign for disobedience to God’s law.

Faithful Ruth Accompanies Naomi (Both “Widows”) back to Bethlehem (the “House of Bread”)

After the death of the Naomi’s husband and two sons, in verse 6, Naomi decided to return to Bethlehem because she had heard of God’s showing mercy to His people and His provision of bread to them there.  Initially, according to verse 8, the daughters-in-law both began to accompany Naomi back to her people in Bethlehem.  Naomi is recorded in verse 9 as having nonetheless instructed her daughters-in-law, Ruth and Orpah, to return to the homes of their husbands to find “rest”.   This is particularly significant because Naomi did not use any other word other than “rest”.  Naomi was uttering a biblical, spiritual, truism. Isn’t it to the house of Jesus that we go if we truly seek rest from both our sins and our enemies?  Absolutely!  Remember how Jesus said, Matthew 11:28, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Naomi could have used other language…but she did not.  God, the Holy Spirit, moved Naomi to say the word “rest”, so that it would harmonize with the entirety of this historical parable (and the entirety of the Bible) to convey important spiritual truths.  The rest of the verse shows the compassion and love that Naomi and her daughter’s-in- law had for each other, where Naomi “kissed them; and they lifted up their voice, and wept.and they wept together.

As was stated earlier in the Plot Summary, Naomi fully realized her state of destitution and decided to return to Bethlehem, because she “had heard in the country of Moab how that the Lord had visited his people in giving them bread.”  The immediate reaction from her daughters-in-law after Naomi’s initial advice for them to go home is as we read in verse 10, “Surely, we will return with thee unto thy people.”  Nonetheless, Naomi warned them, in verses 11-13, of the hazards and hardships with respect to finding husbands, and that she could no longer raise up sons for them to marry, etc. (and, as “Moabitesses”, they would be treated like lepers in Israel).  Naomi also made clear that hardships were likely to continue along with her, given that, “the hand of the LORD is gone out against me.”  In verse 14 we read the Orpah went back, sadly with them weeping a second time, but Ruth stood fast and “clave H1692” to Naomi, “And they lifted up their voice, and wept again: and Orpah kissed her mother in law; but Ruth clave unto her.” The word “clave” is the same word we find in Genesis 2:24, “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.” Such closeness can also be translated as “abide” or “keep fast” as we will see is used later in Ruth.

Ruth’s Commitment and Testimony

Then, despite one last admonition from Naomi, in verse 15, Ruth said in Verses 16 & 17,  “Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the LORD do so to me, and more also, [if ought] but death part thee and me.” Ruth unreservedly declares her allegiance to Naomi, as well as to her people, and, most importantly, to her God. This last declaration by Ruth brings to mind Jeremiah 30:22 where God makes a similar declaration to Israel, representing His eternal church, “And ye shall be my people, and I will be your God.”

But there is another important spiritual aspect of this admonition by Naomi.  In Luke 14:25-27, we read that great multitudes began to follow Jesus Christ and then Jesus turned and gave them a similar admonition, “and there went great multitudes with him: and he turned, and said unto them, if any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple.”

Many people hear the gospel call and are intrigued, at least initially.  However, once it becomes clear that the true nature of the gospel is such that we are called upon to make a choice, to follow Jesus and abandon all else: friends, family, and self…then the number of followers dwindles quickly and most go back to the enticements of their old world. We are instructed to put God first in our lives as stated in Matthew, 6:33, “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness…” We must be willing to put all cherished worldly things and sins into the trash bin. We must truly repent (turn back to God, rather than stay fixated on the enticements of the world) and not go backward.  We must be fully committed to serving God, and even after all that we can do, it is only the Grace of God that we will eternal life. “For many are called, but few are chosen.”(Matthew 22:14)

In verse 18 we read when Ruth could no longer be persuaded by Naomi to go back to Moab, “When she saw that she was stedfastly minded to go with her, then she left speaking unto her.”  We should be aware that the Hebrew words translated as “stedfastly minded” can also be translated as “good courage or “courageous”, as we read in Jos 1:6,7,9,&18.  Ruth was fully aware of he risks that she was taking in leaving the land of her nativity and the difficulties that were likely to be faced in going ahead, but she went boldly forth faithfully with Naomi to Bethlehem. And, as we know from 2 Corinthians 5:7, “(For we walk by faith, not by sight:)“, Ruth typifies all those who recognize their destitution and desperate need of, and hope in, finding the bread of life (Jesus) by “grace”, which is the undeserved favor of God.

In verse 19 we read that the two widows, Naomi and Ruth, returned together to Bethlehem, and were greeted by the townspeople who barely recognized Naomis and who wondered what had happened to Naomi (she was entirely alone, except for “Ruth the Moabitess”).  Naomi made the point of saying that she had come back home out of the land of Moab entirely empty, and moreover, as we read in verse 20 that they should no longer refer to her as Naomi, meaning “sweet(ness)”, but rather Mara, meaning “bitter” because, “the Almighty hath dealt very bitterly with me.”  It is no accident that Mara is the same as Mary, the mother of Jesus, in the New Testament. The nation of Israel was under Roman rule, and God had not spoken to the Nation of Israel in over four hundred years since the Prophet Malachi. Naomi said in verse 21, “I went out full, and the LORD hath brought me home again empty: why [then] call ye me Naomi, seeing the LORD hath testified against me, and the Almighty hath afflicted me?

Are there equivalent passages in the Bible that relate to what Naomi has just lamented?  Absolutely! When we look at the beginning of the very book entitled “Lamentations” we find where God is describing the very situation that Naomi is a type and figure of Judah (and remember that Naomi is from Judah). Lamentations 1:1-4, “How doth the city sit solitary, [that was] full of people! [how] is she become as a widow! she [that was] great among the nations, [and] princess among the provinces, [how] is she become tributary! She weepeth sore in the night, and her tears [are] on her cheeks: among all her lovers she hath none to comfort [her]: all her friends have dealt treacherously with her, they are become her enemies. Judah is gone into captivity because of affliction, and because of great servitude: she dwelleth among the heathen, she findeth no rest: all her persecutors overtook her between the straits. The ways of Zion do mourn, because none come to the solemn feasts: all her gates are desolate: her priests sigh, her virgins are afflicted, and she [is] in bitterness.”  

However, we know that Naomi turned back to Bethlehem in Judah, and she returned which is consistent with what we find at the end of the Lamentations, chapter 5:19-21, Where we see that there is still hope of redemption, “Thou, O LORD, remainest for ever; thy throne from generation to generation. Wherefore dost thou forget us for ever, [and] forsake us so long time? Turn thou us unto thee, O LORD, and we shall be turned; renew our days as of old.” Naomi represents the remnant of national Israel who God causes to return to Him.

And let us not forget, that just as Naomi is a “Type” of the remnant of National Israel whom God chooses to save, Isaiah Chapter 54 makes clear that despite all the trials and tribulations that “she” would endure, God Is her loving Husband Who Will save her.  Look in particular at Isaiah 54:3-8, “For thou shalt break forth on the right hand and on the left; and thy seed shall inherit the Gentiles, and make the desolate cities to be inhabited. Fear not; for thou shalt not be ashamed: neither be thou confounded; for thou shalt not be put to shame: for thou shalt forget the shame of thy youth, and shalt not remember the reproach of thy widowhood any moreFor thy Maker [is] thine husband; the LORD of hosts [is] his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; The God of the whole earth shall he be calledFor the LORD hath called thee as a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit, and a wife of youth, when thou wast refused, saith thy God. For a small moment have I forsaken thee; but with great mercies will I gather theeIn a little wrath I hid my face from thee for a moment; but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy on thee, saith the LORD thy Redeemer.”  Doesn’t that sound like God is describing earthly historical “Type” represented by the widows, Naomis and Ruth? And similarly, who is the earthly, historical “redeemer” “Type”?…We will soon see that it is Boaz. (Note that in Isaiah 60:16 we can also read, “Thou shalt also suck the milk of the Gentiles, and shalt suck the breast of kings: and thou shalt know that I the LORD [am] thy Saviour and thy Redeemer, the mighty One of Jacob.)

The final key piece of information, provided in verse 22, is that this was the time of the beginning of the barley harvest (which not coincidentally happens to also be the same time as The Feast of Weeks, or the Feast of First Fruits, which Christians remember when the New Testament church was instituted with the pouring out of the Holy Spirit in 33AD, 50 days after the Jesus Passover sacrifice).

In Deuteronomy 16:9-11 we read of the significance of the Feast of Weeks to the early ingathering (which Christians remember and regard as Pentecost, when the Christian Era began with the pouring out of the Holy Spirit see Act 2:1-4), “Seven weeks shalt thou number unto thee: begin to number the seven weeks from [such time] as thou beginnest to [put] the sickle to the cornAnd thou shalt keep the feast of weeks unto the LORD thy God with a tribute of a freewill offering of thine hand, which thou shalt give [unto the LORD thy God], according as the LORD thy God hath blessed thee: And thou shalt rejoice before the LORD [thy] God, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the Levite that [is] within thy gates, and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, that [are] among you, in the place which the LORD thy God hath chosen to place his name there.

Chapter 2 

The Feast of Weeks (Pentecost), When Naomi and Ruth arrive in Bethlehem, Where Boaz, The Near Kinsman and Mighty Man of Wealth Lives

In the second chapter of Ruth, we immediately learn of Naomi’s “kinsman” by marriage, Boaz, a “mighty man of wealth.” We read this in verse 1, “And Naomi had a kinsman (יָדַע (yāḏaʿ)w H3045) of her husband’s, a mighty man of wealth, of the family of Elimelech; and his name [was] Boaz.” The word for mighty in Hebrew is gibôr (גִּבּוֹר) H1368 and it is used by God to describe Jesus in Isaiah 9:6, “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty H1368 God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.”  In Isaiah 42:13, we also read that, “The LORD shall go forth as a mighty man, he shall stir up jealousy like a man of war: he shall cry, yea, roar; he shall prevail against his enemies.

Then in verse 2 Ruth suggests to Naomi receives permission that she (Ruth) go out humbly as a beggar to glean the fields of “corn” (likely the barley) in the hope of finding “grace” in the eyes of the whoever is the owner of the field.  “glean ears of corn after [him] in whose sight I shall find grace.” Note the word “grace”(חֵן (ḥēn)H2580), which can be translated from the original Hebrew as either “grace” or “favour“,  because that is what we as sinners must seek and hope for from God through Jesus Christ.

In verse 3 we read, “And she went, and came, and gleaned in the field after the reapers: and her hap was to light on a part of the field [belonging] unto Boaz, who [was] of the kindred of Elimelech.” We know that there are no happenstances with God, so what initially appeared to be just happenstance to Ruth having been gleaning in the field belonging to Boaz (“hap” meaning “by chance”, in Chapter 2, verse 3) was in reality, all clearly ordained by God as part of God’s predetermined plan.  It was all according to God’s Divine Providence as is every other event recorded by God in the Bible. It is important to note that since Boaz “[was] of the kindred of Elimelech” he was also the kindred of Ruth’s dead husband, Mahlon (the son of Elimelech).

Next we see in verse 4 that Boaz “came from Bethlehem,” whereupon Boaz “said unto the reapers, The LORD be with you”, and the reapers respond with, “The LORD bless thee.” Boaz came from Bethlehem, just as Jesus came from Bethlehem.  Boaz was of the Tribe of Judah, just like Jesus.  Boaz said, “The LORD be with you,” to the reapers, and the reapers responded with “The LORD bless thee.”  Isn’t this exactly what God says to the believers the reapers in the world?

See for example, in Luke 10:2 “Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest,” …However we also know that in the Parable of the Sower, in Matthew 13:39, Jesus said, “the reapers are the angels.The fact is that “angels” in the original Greek text can also be interpreted as “messengers,” and both the angels of God (from Heaven) and the believers on earth are both considered as being God’s “messengers”, so therefore, the believers are the reapers!

And don’t we say with all our heart like the we read in Psalm 103:1, “[[[A Psalm] of David.]] Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, [bless] his holy name.”?  Of course we do, if we are believers and therefore among God’s reapers and messengers.Further in the same Psalm we read again in verse 2, “Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:” And in verse 22, “Bless the LORD, all his works in all places of his dominion: bless the LORD, O my soul.

Jesus will bless His saints, and His saints will bless Him as we read:

2 Chronicles 20:17, “Ye shall not [need] to fight in this [battle]: set yourselves, stand ye [still], and see the salvation of the LORD with you, O Judah and Jerusalem: fear not, nor be dismayed; to morrow go out against them: for the LORD [will] be with you.”

In Psalm 145:10, “All thy works shall praise thee, O LORD; and thy saints shall bless thee.”

Gleaning by “the Poor and Stranger”

Also it was made clear according to the testimony of the reapers’ overseeing servant that Ruth had not only accompanied Naomi from Moab, but that she was a diligent worker and worked in the fields all day as a gleaner (meaning she was “poor”). Gleaning was done by those who were poor (hence destitute) and/or strangers in the land. With respect to “gleaning”, God set down specific laws as found in the following Bible verses:

  1. Leviticus 19:9&10, “And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not wholly reap the corners of thy field, neither shalt thou gather the gleanings of thy harvest. And thou shalt not glean thy vineyard, neither shalt thou gather every grape of thy vineyard; thou shalt leave them for the poor and stranger: I am the Lord your God.”
  2.  Leviticus 23:22 “And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not make clean riddance of the corners of thy field when thou reapest, neither shalt thou gather any gleaning of thy harvest: thou shalt leave them unto the poor, and to the stranger: I am the Lord your God.
  3. Deuteronomy 24:17-21 we read,  “Thou shalt not pervert the judgment of the stranger, nor of the fatherless; nor take a widow’s raiment to pledge: But thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in Egypt, and the Lord thy God redeemed thee thence: therefore I command thee to do this thing. When thou cuttest down thine harvest in thy field, and hast forgot a sheaf in the field, thou shalt not go again to fetch it: it shall be for the stranger, for the fatherless, and for the widow: that the Lord thy God may bless thee in all the work of thine hands. When thou beatest thine olive tree, thou shalt not go over the boughs again: it shall be for the stranger, for the fatherless, and for the widow. When thou gatherest the grapes of thy vineyard, thou shalt not glean it afterward: it shall be for the stranger, for the fatherless, and for the widow.”

The above provides a picture of the fact that we (who have the gospel of salvation through Jesus Christ [and the fruit of the blessings of God] because He has saved us) are to have a concern for those who are still aliens, as orphans and widows and strangers and poor, and to provide the necessary spiritual food for those who are without, but come seeking for spiritual nourishment.

Gleaning is Like Getting Crumbs from the Master’s Table

An interesting parallel can be found in Matthew Chapter 15 where we read in verses 22-28: “And, behold, a woman of Canaan came out of the same coasts, and cried unto him, saying, Have mercy on me, O Lord, thou son of David; my daughter is grievously vexed with a devil. But he answered her not a word. And his disciples came and besought him, saying, Send her away; for she crieth after us. But he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Then came she and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help me. But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs. And she said, Truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table. Then Jesus answered and said unto her, O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt. And her daughter was made whole from that very hour.”  There we see an unsaved person, from a Gentile nation, outside of the people of God (corporately speaking), call upon Jesus as “Lord” and admit that she is no better than a dog, but yet asks if it might be that she (like a dog) might glean some crumbs from her Master’s table. And Jesus showed her grace. Like Ruth, we see another picture of someone who humbly gleans of the spiritual bread to become born again by the “grace” of God who would have otherwise remained a stranger, orphan, or widow.

The Barley Harvest is the Harvest of First Fruits, The Final Harvest is the End of the World

Remember also that Jesus said in John 4:35-38, “Say not ye, There are yet four months, and [then] cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest. And he that reapeth receiveth wages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal: that both he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together. And herein is that saying true, One soweth, and another reapeth. I sent you to reap that whereon ye bestowed no labour: other men laboured, and ye are entered into their labours.”  We, as servants of the LORD Jesus Christ, are gleaners in the fields of humanity seeking to harvest souls for our Master by sharing the Gospel of Salvation through Jesus. The harvest in Ruth’s day was barley corn, the first fruits, but the final harvest is at the end of the world. Matthew 13:39 makes this unequivocally clear as Jesus explained the Parable of the Sower, “The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels.” See Also: https://bereansearching.com/2018/03/20/the-parable-of-the-sower-the-bibles-rosetta-stone/

God also describes the end of the world as being like a harvest of wheat (which usually occurred on a “threshing floor”), where the wheat and the tares are separated on the Threshing Floor of God. In Matthew 13:30, Jesus tells us, “Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn. The wheat (the saved souls, the believers from out of all mankind) will be placed into the harvest garner (they are all going to Heaven), before which the tares (the unsaved souls, the unbelievers) will be taken out and burned (they are all going to Hell).

Revelation 14:14-20 provides some more insight into this harvesting of the unsaved that will take place at the end of the world on Judgment Day by Jesus: “And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud [one] sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickleAnd another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to him that sat on the cloud, Thrust in thy sickle, and reap: for the time is come for thee to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe. And he that sat on the cloud thrust in his sickle on the earth; and the earth was reaped. And another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle. And another angel came out from the altar, which had power over fire; and cried with a loud cry to him that had the sharp sickle, saying, Thrust in thy sharp sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her grapes are fully ripe. And the angel thrust in his sickle into the earth, and gathered the vine of the earth, and cast [it] into the great winepress of the wrath of God. And the winepress was trodden without the city, and blood came out of the winepress, even unto the horse bridles, by the space of a thousand [and] six hundred furlongs.

The Feast of Weeks (Pentecost), When Naomi and Ruth Arrive in Bethlehem

Boaz came from Bethlehem just as Jesus came from Bethlehem.  Boaz was of the Tribe of Judah, just like Jesus.  Boaz said, “The LORD be with you,” to the reapers, and the reapers responded with “The LORD bless thee.”  Isn’t this exactly what God says to the believers the reapers in the world?  See for example, in Luke 10:2 “Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest,” …However we also know that in the Parable of the Sower, in Matthew 13:39, Jesus said, “the reapers are the angels.” The fact is that “angels” in the original Greek text can also be interpreted as “messengers,” and both the angels of God (from Heaven) and the believers on earth are both considered as being God’s “messengers” and God’s “labourers” and “reapers”.   And don’t we say with all our heart like the we read in Psalm 103:1, [[[A Psalm] of David.]]“Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, [bless] his holy name.”?  Of course we do, if we are believers and therefore among God’s reapers and messengers.

Further in the same Psalm we read again in verse 2, “Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:” And in verse 22, “Bless the LORD, all his works in all places of his dominion: bless the LORD, O my soul.

In Romans 8:29 we read, “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.”

Ruth was a “stranger”, but Boaz called her, “My Daughter”!

In verses 8-10, we read, “Then said Boaz unto Ruth, Hearest thou not, my daughter? Go not to glean in another field, neither go from hence, but abide here fast by my maidens: Let thine eyes be on the field that they do reap, and go thou after them: have I not charged the young men that they shall not touch thee? and when thou art athirst, go unto the vessels, and drink of that which the young men have drawn. Then she fell on her face, and bowed herself to the ground, and said unto him, Why have I found grace (חֵן (ḥēn)H2580in thine eyes, that thou shouldest take knowledge of me, seeing I am a stranger?

Imagine that! Boaz knew he was speaking to a “Moabitess”, a widow and a stranger from a nation that God had cursed, and yet he showed loving kindness to her, to the point of calling her his daughter!  Does this sound at all familiar?  It should, because that is exactly how God views His elect.  While yet “strangers” to God, through Jesus’s intercession, the elect become the children of God.

In Ephesians 2:11-13 remember what God tells us regarding “strangers”, “Wherefore remember, that ye [being] in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands; That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.”  And then just a few verses later we also read in Ephesians 2:19, “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God;” and we are encouraged to all know what is found in Romans 8:28, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to [his] purpose.” 

“Grace” and “Knowledge”

Ruth fell on her face and bowed herself to the ground and she was amazed that Boaz had shown her “grace” and took “knowledge” of her even though she was a “stranger”!  Ruth was subservient and contrite before Boaz. This is the similar way we are to approach Jesus, our God, Who has shown His Grace, compassion, and kindness to us. And we must remember that “grace” is a gift and not something that is earned. In Ephesians 2:4-9 we are told, “But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved😉 And hath raised [us] up together, and made [us] sit together in heavenly [places] in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in [his] kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: [it is] the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.

Notice also the word “knowledge”, it is from the Hebrew word נָכַר (nāḵar)H5234  for to know, acknowledge, discern. Just as Boaz knew and acknowledged and discerned Ruth, so does God know His children.  God knows all about us!  Please see all of Psalms 103, but we note here in Psalms 103:11-14, “For as the heaven is high above the earth, [so] great is his mercy toward them that fear him. As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us. Like as a father pitieth [his] children, [so] the LORD pitieth them that fear him. For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we [are] dust.”  And in 2 Chronicles 16:9 we read,For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of [them] whose heart [is] perfect toward him. …

Not to Glean in Another Field!

Notice also that Boaz commanded her to not glean from any other fields, but to stay close to his maidens and she would be safe.  Moreover, she would be provided for when she is both hungry and thirsty.

We are reminded that God’s command is explicit in the Bible, many times over that, we are to not seek after other gods or false gospels (and hence not to glean in other fields), but also in 1 Thessalonians 5:12,  “And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you; And to esteem them very highly in love for their work’s sake. [And] be at peace among yourselves.” and in verse 21, “Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.”  

We also know from Galatians 1:6-8 that, “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospelWhich is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.

Hunger and Thirst

Moreover, in Matthew 5:6 we read, “Blessed [are] they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.”

Harvesting For God

As for harvesting, we know that Jesus said in John 4:35-38, “Say not ye, There are yet four months, and [then] cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest. And he that reapeth receiveth wages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal: that both he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together. And herein is that saying true, One soweth, and another reapeth. I sent you to reap that whereon ye bestowed no labour:other men laboured, and ye are entered into their labours.”  And the exposition through Paul in 1 Corinthians 3:6-8, “I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increaseSo then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increaseNow he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.”  All believers, as Christian servants, are merely laborers in the fields of Jesus Christ, our Master, sowing and nurturing with the water of the Word, but God determines and provides the fruit to be reaped and harvested. The ultimate harvest of souls is at the end of the world on Judgment Day!

How do we know this?  From the Parable of the Sower!  Please see: https://bereansearching.com/2018/03/20/the-parable-of-the-sower-the-bibles-rosetta-stone/ 

In Matthew 13:37-43, we read the exposition by Jesus, “He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of manThe field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked [one]; The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angelsAs therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this worldThe Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.

Ruth Left the Land of Her Nativity

In verses 11 & 12 we read, “And Boaz answered and said unto her, It hath fully been shewed me, all that thou hast done unto thy mother in law since the death of thine husband: and [how] thou hast left thy father and thy mother, and the land of thy nativity, and art come unto a people which thou knewest not heretofore. The LORD recompense thy work, and a full reward be given thee of the LORD God of Israel, under whose wings (כָּנָף (kānāp̄; H3671) thou art come to trust.

We all should be aware that nothing escapes the eyes of God, as we noted earlier, God is Omniscient and Omnipotent and He knows everything!

Psalms 34:15, “The eyes of the LORD [are] upon the righteous, and his ears [are] open unto their cry.

Proverbs 5:21, “For the ways of man [are] before the eyes of the LORD, and he pondereth all his goings.”

Proverbs 15:3, “The eyes of the LORD [are] in every place, beholding the evil and the good.”

Boaz saw that Ruth was caring for her Mother-in-Law, Naomi, a widow, in accordance with God’s commands (1 Timothy 5:3, “Honour widows that are widows indeed“).  And what about Ruth leaving her family behind?  Luke 14:26, Jesus said, “If any [man] come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.”  Also, in Luke 18:29 & 30, Jesus emphatically touched on this point again, “And he said unto them,Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or parents, or brethren, or wife, or children, for the kingdom of God’s sake, Who shall not receive manifold more in this present time, and in the world to come life everlasting.

Under the Wings of God

Psalms 17:8,  “Keep me as the apple of the eye, hide me under the shadow of thy wings(כָּנָף (kānāp̄; H3671),”

Psalms 36:7, “How excellent [is] thy lovingkindness, O God! therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of thy wings (כָּנָף (kānāp̄; H3671).”

Psalm 63:7, “Because thou hast been my help, therefore in the shadow of thy wings(כָּנָף (kānāp̄; H3671will I rejoice.

Psalms 91:4, “:He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings (כָּנָף (kānāp̄; H3671)shalt thou trust: his truth [shall be thy] shield and buckler.

And let us not forget the words of the Lord Jesus Christ in Mathew 23:37, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, [thou] that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under [her] wings, and ye would not!

A Full Reward

Proverbs 11:18, “The wicked worketh a deceitful work: but to him that soweth righteousness [shall] be a sure reward.

Colossians 3:22-24, “Servants, obey in all things [your] masters according to the flesh; not with eye service, as men pleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing GodAnd whatsoever ye do, do [it] heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.

The Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard

And remember also that no matter how late anyone begins to work in the field of our Lord God and Master, Jesus Christ, we will all receive the same full reward.  Jesus made this clear in the parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard in Matthew 20:1-15, “For the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man [that is] an householder, which went out early in the morning to hire labourers into his vineyard. And when he had agreed with the labourers for a penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard. And he went out about the third hour, and saw others standing idle in the marketplace, And said unto them; Go ye also into the vineyard, and whatsoever is right I will give you. And they went their way. Again he went out about the sixth and ninth hour, and did likewise. And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle? They say unto him, Because no man hath hired us. He saith unto them, Go ye also into the vineyard; and whatsoever is right, [that] shall ye receive.¶ So when even was come, the lord of the vineyard saith unto his steward, Call the labourers, and give them [their] hire, beginning from the last unto the first. And when they came that [were hired] about the eleventh hour, they received every man a penny. But when the first came, they supposed that they should have received more; and they likewise received every man a penny. And when they had received [it], they murmured against the goodman of the house, Saying, These last have wrought [but] one hour, and thou hast made them equal unto us, which have borne the burden and heat of the day. But he answered one of them, and said, Friend, I do thee no wrong: didst not thou agree with me for a penny? Take [that] thine [is], and go thy way: I will give unto this last, even as unto thee. Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own? Is thine eye evil, because I am good?”  Praise God that, while we have yet breath in our bodies and while it is still day, it is not too late to come in to labor in God’s vineyard or field to harvest souls for God’s Kingdom, and yet we will all receive the same full reward…Eternal Life in Heaven with God!

And remember that in John 9:4 &5, we read, “I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”

Also, Deuteronomy 24:14 & 15 says, “Thou shalt not oppress an hired servant [that is] poor and needy, [whether he be] of thy brethren, or of thy strangers that [are] in thy land within thy gates: At his day thou shalt give [him] his hire, neither shall the sun go down upon it; for he [is] poor, and setteth his heart upon it: lest he cry against thee unto the LORD, and it be sin unto thee.”

And finally, In Luke 9:62, we read where Jesus said, “And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”  We must maintain our commitment as believers and not go back to the world and our old worldly focused ways.

In verse 13, we read, “Then she said, Let me find favour (חֵן (ḥēn)H2580) in thy sight, my lord; for that thou hast comforted  me, and for that thou hast spoken friendly unto thine handmaid, though I be not like unto one of thine handmaidens.”  

The word “favour” can also translated as “grace” as we find in Genesis 6:8, “But Noah found grace (חֵן (ḥēn)H2580) in the eyes of the LORD.”

The word “comforted” is the key word נָחַם (nāḥam)H5162, from which is derived the name of the prophet Nahum נַחוּם (naḥûm) H5151 in the Book of Nahum, please see: https://bereansearching.com/2022/07/20/a-christian-perspective-on-the-book-of-nahum-comfort-and-consolation/. God promises comfort to the believers.

The word “friendly” holds a far greater meaning than we normally attribute to the word.  In the Bible, the word translated as “friendly” is from the Hebrew word “לֵב”(“leb”)H3820, which is most often translated “heart” 508 times, suggesting that it is a deeply felt kindness/love, and much more than a superficial kindness.

In verse 14 we read, “And Boaz said unto her, At mealtime come thou hither, and eat of the bread, and dip thy morsel in the vinegar. And she sat beside the reapers: and he reached her parched [corn], and she did eat, and was sufficed, and left.”  So not only did Boaz offer to quench the thirst of Ruth, but he directed that at mealtime (lunch time) that she take partake of that same sustenance “bread” with a dressing of “vinegar” and also some “parched “corn”.  Not necessarily a feast, but most welcome for  someone who would otherwise havre nothing to eat and hungers, and as a result she was satisfied. And note that the word “sufficed” is the Hebrew word שָׂבַע (śāḇaʿ)H7646, which means to be satisfied as we read in:

Psalms 17:15, “As for me, I will behold thy face in righteousness: I shall be satisfied,H7646 when I awake, with thy likeness.”

Psalms 22:26, The meek shall eat and be satisfied:H7646 they shall praise the LORD that seek him: your heart shall live for ever.”

Psalms 37:19, “They shall not be ashamed in the evil time: and in the days of famine they shall be satisfied.”H7646

Psalms 65:4,Blessed [is the man whom] thou choosest, and causest to approach [unto thee, that] he may dwell in thy courts: we shall be satisfiedH7646 with the goodness of thy house, [even] of thy holy temple.” 

In verses 15 & 16 we read that Boaz extends to Ruth additional kindnesses, which Ruth may not have been initially aware. “And when she was risen up to glean, Boaz commanded his young men, saying, Let her glean even among the sheaves, and reproach her not: And let fall also [some] of the handfuls of purpose for her, and leave [them], that she may glean [them], and rebuke her not.” Normally, a gleaner would have to humbly remain at some distance from the reapers who were harvesting the sheaves of barley corn or wheat.  However, Boaz instructed that she can come close to the reapers and thereby get a direct part of the harvest, and moreover, the workers were instructed to deliberately drop extra portions (“handfuls”) of the corn for Ruth to glean. At the same time, regardless of the excess that Ruth obtained thereby, she was not to be “rebuked” גָּעַר (gāʿarH1605 (reproved) or “reproached” (shamed) by Boaz’s servants.

As Christian believers, God’s kindness is unlimited towards them.  Moreover, God will not rebuke His children,  unlike those who remain cursed as we read in Psalms 9:5, “Thou hast rebukedH1605 the heathen, thou hast destroyed the wicked, thou hast put out their name for ever and ever.”

And note also that the word “risen up” is קוּם (qûm)H6965 in the Hebrew, and it is the same as that used in Psalms 113:7-9, “He raiseth upH6965 the poor out of the dust, [and] lifteth the needy out of the dunghill; That he may set [him] with princes, even with the princes of his people. He maketh the barren woman to keep house, [and] to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the LORD.” (NOTE: These verses, from Psalms 113, happen to also provide a complete and succinct summary of both the Book of Ruth and God’s Magnificent Salvation Plan through The LORD Jesus Christ!)

It is also used in Psalms 76:9, “When God aroseH6965 to judgment, to save all the meek of the earth. Selah.

Rising up also makes us think of the first resurrection, when a stranger is saved and welcomed into the family of God through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, and is fed by the reading and hearing of the Word and then prepared to go out into the world to bring the Gospel of Salvation to the spiritually dead and dying.

Working Until the End of the Day

In verse 17 we read, “So she gleaned in the field until even, and beat out that she had gleaned: and it was about an ephah of barley.”  She worked in the fields the entire day, but at the end of the day, at the evening, she stopped. It brings to mind that the harvest work in the fields of men for Jesus would stop at the end of the world, as Jesus said in John 9:4, “I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.”

Bringing Sustenance to Others in Need

In verse 18, “And she took [it] up, and went into the city: and her mother in law saw what she had gleaned: and she brought forth, and gave to her that she had reserved after she was sufficed.”  Again we see the same Hebrew word for sufficed,  שָׂבַע (śāḇaʿ)H7646, that we saw in verse 14 that means satisfied. Ruth brought home to Naomi the Ephah of barley and provided Naomi with the extra parched corn that she had saved from lunchtime in the field that day.

It is clear that Naomi was more than surprised at such a bountiful gleaning, and immediately asked where did she glean, because in verse 19 we read, “And her mother in law said unto her, Where hast thou gleaned to day? and where wroughtest thou? blessed (בָּרַךְ (bāraḵ)H1288 ) be he that did take knowledge (נָכַר (nāḵar)H5234of thee. And she shewed her mother in law with whom she had wrought, and said, The man’s name with whom I wrought to day [is] Boaz.” Before she knew the name of the person who took knowledge of Ruth, Naomi blessed him.  Naomi was shocked and thrilled to hear that the name of the man was Boaz!

Next in verse 20 we read, “And Naomi said unto her daughter in law, Blessed(בָּרַךְ (bāraḵ)H1288 ) be he of the LORD, who hath not left off his kindness to the living and to the dead. And Naomi said unto her, The man [is] near of kin unto us, one of our next kinsmen.” Naomi knew that the man named Boaz was  a relative of her late husband, Elimelech, and as a result was officially a kinsman per God’s pronouncement when it came to inheritances where a father dies and leaves no heirs as we read in Numbers 27:6-11, where it concludes, “And if his father have no brethren, then ye shall give his inheritance unto his kinsman that is next to him of his family, and he shall possess it: and it shall be unto the children of Israel a statute of judgment, as the LORD commanded Moses.

In verse 21, “And Ruth the Moabitess said, He said unto me also, Thou shalt keep fast by my young men, until they have ended all my harvest.” Ruth faithfully repeated the words that she had been given by Boaz, just as believers are to faithfully proclaim Jesus Christ, the Word of God, as found in the Bible.

In verse 22, “And Naomi said unto Ruth her daughter in law, [It is] good, my daughter, that thou go out with his maidens, that they meet thee not in any other field.” Naomi agreed that this admonition was a good one, and that Ruth should not be found anywhere else but in Boaz’s field.  This is not unlike how we are told not to serve any other gods, but only the True God of Creation, the God of the Bible. There are many examples, but here is one found in Joshua 21:20, “If ye forsake the LORD, and serve strange gods, then he will turn and do you hurt, and consume you, after that he hath done you good.

In verse 23, “So she kept fast by the maidens of Boaz to glean unto the end of barley harvest and of wheat harvest; and dwelt with her mother in law.”   Ruth was obedient to the admonitions of both Boaz and Naomi and continued to live with Naomi.  Ruth continued to glean from Boaz’s field, staying close to Boaz’s maidens, the reapers, through not just the Barley harvest, but the wheat harvest as well.

Chapter 3

In verse 1, we see that Naomi is concerned for the future of Ruth. “Then Naomi her mother in law said unto her, My daughter, shall I not seek rest for thee, that it may be well with thee?” Naomi was effectively saying, is that it is appropriate that she needs to consider Ruth’s welfare and Ruth’s need to find a husband.

The Threshing Floor of Boaz

In verse 2, we read, “And now [is] not Boaz of our kindred, with whose maidens thou wast? Behold, he winnoweth barley to night in the threshingfloor.” Naomi had her ear to the ground so to speak. She knew, likely from Ruth, that the harvesting had been completed and therefore that the work of winnowing the barley was underway, which consists of winnowing “barley from the chaff” involving the use of a fan in one’s hand (that involves throwing up the mixture of the collected harvest material into the air where the wind carries away the chaff and the corn drops to the floor for collecting into heaps and then storage vessels).

Several verses speak to this and provide insights on the spiritual aspects of what it all means.  In Isaiah 41:13-17 we read, “For I the LORD thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee. Fear not, thou worm Jacob, [and] ye men of Israel; I will help thee, saith the LORD, and thy redeemer, H1350, the Holy One of Israel.(Note: It is particularly significant that the word “redeemer” is found together within the same context of threshing that we find in the Book of Ruth.) Behold, I will make thee a new sharp threshing instrument having teeth: thou shalt thresh the mountains, and beat [them] small, and shalt make the hills as chaff. Thou shalt fan them, and the wind shall carry them away, and the whirlwind shall scatter them: and thou shalt rejoice in the LORD, [and] shalt glory in the Holy One of Israel. [When] the poor and needy seek water, and [there is] none, [and] their tongue faileth for thirst, I the LORD will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them.”  In Matthew 3:12, we read where John the Baptist was proclaiming Jesus and the future, “Whose fan [is] in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.This is also in Luke 3:17, “Whose fan [is] in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and will gather the wheat into his garner; but the chaff he will burn with fire unquenchable.”  We are clearly being told that on Judgment Day, Jesus will separate the harvest of souls, the believers, from the chaff, the unbelievers.  The saved will go into Jesus’s garner/harvest house/barn, while the chaff, the unsaved of humanity, will be burned for an eternity in Hell. This is not an easy fact to read or to tell, but it is the truth nonetheless.

The Threshing Floor of Ornan (Araunah), The Jebusite

There is another Threshing Floor mentioned in the Bible that we need to consider within this study of Ruth, and it is located a mere 6 miles from Bethlehem.  It is known as the “threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite”.  It is where the Temple of God was built in Jersualem by Solomon as we read in 2 Chronicles 3:1, “Then Solomon began to build the house of the LORD at Jerusalem in mount Moriah, where [the LORD] appeared unto David his father, in the place that David had prepared in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite.” That, alone,is extremely significant!  However, there were four very significant other events in the Bible that occurred at that precise location on Mount Moriah, one approximately 1000 years earlier and one approximately 1000 years later.

  1. Mount Moriah, where the Threshing Floor of Ornan was later installed and that subsequently became the Temple Mount, was the location where Abraham went to sacrifice his only begotten son (of his wife Sarah) Isaac! in Genesis 22:2 we read where God instructs Abraham, “And he said, Take now thy son, thine only [son] Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.”
  2. Because of David’s sin in numbering the people of Israel, we read in 1 Chronicles 21:14 & 15, “So the LORD sent pestilence upon Israel: and there fell of Israel seventy thousand men. And God sent an angel unto Jerusalem to destroy it: and as he was destroying, the LORD beheld, and he repented him of the evil, and said to the angel that destroyed, It is enough, stay now thine hand. And the angel of the LORD stood by the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite.” (NOTE: In 2 Samuel 24:16 Ornan is called “Araunah”)
  3. King David was then told to erect an altar to God on that threshing floor. “Then the angel of the LORD commanded Gad to say to David, that David should go up, and set up an altar unto the LORD in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite. And Ornan turned back, and saw the angel; and his four sons with him hid themselves. Now Ornan was threshing wheat. And as David came to Ornan, Ornan looked and saw David, and went out of the threshingfloor, and bowed himself to David with [his] face to the ground. Then David said to Ornan, Grant me the place of [this] threshingfloor, that I may build an altar therein unto the LORD: thou shalt grant it me for the full price: that the plague may be stayed from the people. And Ornan said unto David, Take it to thee, and let my lord the king do [that which is] good in his eyes: lo, I give [thee] the oxen [also] for burnt offerings, and the threshing instruments for wood, and the wheat for the meat offering; I give it all. And king David said to Ornan, Nay; but I will verily buy it for the full price: for I will not take that which [is] thine for the LORD, nor offer burnt offerings without cost. So David gave to Ornan for the place six hundred shekels of gold by weight. At that time when David saw that the LORD had answered him in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite, then he sacrificed there.” (NOTE: See also: 2 Samuel 24:18-25, but note that the amount of the purchase was “fifty shekels of silver” verses “six hundred shekels of gold” and while this appears initially to be discrepancy, it has been said that the fifty shekels of silver was only a downpayment.  However, it is far more likely that the price of the “threshingfloor and the oxen” was 50 shekels of silver 2Samuel 24:24, while the price for the “place” (e.g., the surrounding mountain top of Mt. Moriah) was 600 shekels of gold 1 Chronicles 21:25.)
  4. Jesus Christ Atoning Sacrifice began in the nearby Garden of Gethsemane (across the Brook Kidron), then within the gates of Jerusalem, and continued to suffer and ultimately die outside the gates of Jerusalem on nearby Golgotha hill. Is it not interesting that after purchasing the threshing floor, the sacrifice, and the place, we read that, “At that time when David saw that the LORD had answered him in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusitethen he sacrificed there.” And subsequently, in I Chronicles 22:1, with regard to the “place”, “Then David said, This [is] the house of the LORD God, and this [is] the altar of the burnt offering for Israel.  Jesus was the Sacrificial Lamb of God for the true eternal Israel and Mount Moriah was the place of that burnt offering to God!

Typical threshing floor, Source: https://jesusway4you.com/2018/11/14/signs-symbols-of-the-bible-threshing-floor/

NOTE: While Ornan the Jebusite we read about in 1 Chronicles 21 seems to have been an honorable man in showing his willingness to meet David’s request to buy the threshing floor, we know a few things about the Jebusites, 1) they are all descended from Canaan (Genesis 10:16), 2) in Exodus 33:2, God told Moses that, ” I will send an angel before thee; and I will drive out the Canaanite, the Amorite, and the Hittite, and the Perizzite, the Hivite, and the Jebusite:” 3) in 1 Chronicles 11:4-6 we read, “And David and all Israel went to Jerusalem, which [is] Jebus; where the Jebusites [were], the inhabitants of the land. And the inhabitants of Jebus said to David, Thou shalt not come hither. Nevertheless David took the castle of Zion, which is the city of David.” The implication is that David disposed of the Jebusites who rebelled against him.

In Verse 3, we read, “Wash thyself therefore, and anoint thee, and put thy raiment upon thee, and get thee down to the floor: [but] make not thyself known unto the man, until he shall have done eating and drinking.” It is clear that Ruth was to prepare herself with washing, annointing, and raiment as fit for a bride, which is something at least similar to the preparation of a bride adorned for her husband as we read about in Revelation 21:2, “And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.” The Bride of Christ (as represented here by Ruth) will be adorned in the white robes of Christ’s righteousness that we read about in Revelation 7:9.

It is clear that Ruth sole purpose was to go to the threshing floor to present and offer herself to Boaz as a potential worthy virtuous and chaste bride. Boaz directly addresses her below as a being “a virtuous woman”.  So we can in no way conclude that anything untoward, dishonorable, or immoral occurs in the subsequent recorded account.

In Verse 4, we read, “And it shall be, when he lieth down, that thou shalt mark the place where he shall lie, and thou shalt go in, and uncover his feet, and lay thee down; and he will tell thee what thou shalt do.”   The directions given by Naomi to Ruth are quite explicit, and while curious, has important spiritual ramifications as we will see below

In Verse 5, “And she said unto her, All that thou sayest unto me I will do.” Ruth was an obedient servant to her mother-in-law Ruth, as we also see in the next verse.

In Verse 6, “And she went down unto the floor, and did according to all that her mother in law bade her.” Ruth kept her promises to Naomi with her deeds.

In Verse 7, “And when Boaz had eaten and drunk, and his heart was merry, he went to lie down at the end of the heap of corn: and she came softly, and uncovered his feet, and laid her down.”

This passage appears fairly straightforward, but there are other relatable Bible verses that come to mind. First we know that Boaz was sufficed similar to what we had seen earlier with Ruth in the field belonging to Boaz.  Boaz’s heart was “merry” in a way that is not unlike what can be found in the Book of Esther, Chapter 1:10.  What Boaz drank is unspecified.  It could have been water, wine, or something else. However, while we may speculate that it could mean wine in the historical context, it does not necessarily imply drunkeness.  In any case, we have to be careful to see what God means spiritually by the use of such language.  If it can only mean drunkenness, then we would also have to accuse God of being a drunkard, because in Judges 9:12-13, we read, “Then said the trees unto the vine, Come thou, [and] reign over us.  And the vine said unto them, Should I leave my wine, which cheereth God and man, and go to be promoted over the trees?”  Incidentally, in this parable, “the vine” represents Jesus Christ (John 15:1+5), and as everywhere in the Bible, good wine represents the shed blood of Jesus Christ. We also know from Isaiah 53:10, “Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put [him] to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see [his] seed, he shall prolong [his] days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.

Also, in Psalms 104:14-15, we read how the Lord God “causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth;  And wine [that] maketh glad the heart of man, [and] oil to make [his] face to shine, and bread [which] strengtheneth man’s heart.”  We have just observed what the wine and oil represents, and every believer should know that the bread represents Jesus Christ’s body that was given for us (please see John 6:35 and John 6:31 and Matthew 26:26, Mark 14:22, and Luke 22:19 ). And God uses bread and corn often interchangeably to represent the body of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Uncovering Boaz’s Feet

When we read in verse 7, that Ruth went in softly to Boaz while he slept and “and uncovered his feet, and laid her down.” This account is a bit surprising to us in the historical context, but from a spiritual context, given that Boaz represents Jesus and Ruth represents the supplicant believer and the Bride of Christ, there is something more going on.  When Jesus was crucified on that fateful Passover day, he was first stripped of His clothes in Matthew 27:28. He was being shamed to bear our iniquities. Isaiah 53:5, “But he [was] wounded for our transgressions, [he was] bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace [was] upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.”  It would appear therefore that when Ruth uncovered Boaz’s feet, she was effectively, symbolically, imputing the believers’ sins onto Jesus.  This might seem a bit of an extreme extension, but, given what subsequently unfolds below, is it really?

In Verse 8, “And it came to pass at midnight, that the man was afraid H2729, and turned himself: and, behold, a woman lay at his feet.”  We see the eventful words, “It came to pass“, at midnight, although the word is actually “night”, and then the key words “afraid” (actually to tremble, to be terrified, or to quake as in Exodus 19:18 when “…the LORD descended upon it in fire: and the smoke thereof ascended as the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mount quaked H2729 greatly) and “turned himself” (the spiritual application  is unclear here). It is also notable that in Psalm 78:65, God appears to be likening Himself to Boaz in this instance, “Then the Lord awaked as one out of sleep, [and]  like a mighty man that shouteth by reason of wine.”  The subsequent verses in Psalm 78 relate to judgment and vengeance, but for the believers, there is only comfort because Jesus bore the judgment for their sins. And lastly, Boaz notices the presence of a woman (Ruth) at his feet.  

The Overspreading With a Skirt Is Like Covering With Wings

In Verse 9, “And he said, Who [art] thou? And she answered, I [am] Ruth thine handmaid: spread therefore thy skirt (כָּנָף (kānāp̄; H3671) over thine handmaid; for thou [art] a near kinsman.”(גָּאַל (gā’al)H1350Ruth was clearly answering to Boaz that she was Ruth, the Moabitess, the daughter in law to Naomi, the widow of Elimelech and the mother of Mahlon (Ruth’s dead husband who left no progeny). She made it clear, by her appearance and her obeisance, that she was offering herself to be Boaz’s wife, and therefore to bear children up in the name of the dead kin of Boaz, Mahlon and Elimelech.

But what about the spreading of the skirt of Boaz over Ruth, what does that signify.  God tells us in Ezekiel 16:8, “Now when I passed by thee, and looked upon thee, behold, thy time [was] the time of love; and I spread my skirt (כָּנָף (kānāp̄;H3671over thee, and covered thy nakedness: yea, I sware unto thee, and entered into a covenant with thee, saith the Lord GOD, and thou becamest mine.” It is difficult for one’s eyes not to swell up with tears at the reading of these Words of God.  

It should also be noted that God was talking about how well He loved and cared for National Israel through to verse 14 of Ezekiel 16.  However, verses 17 through 59 show us God’s disdain and judgment upon Israel for her spiritual adultery, but nonetheless, in the last four verses in Isaiah 16:60-63, God says that he will remember His covenant and promises to establish a new and everlasting covenant (with the spiritual eternal Israel, the true believing Christians, out of all the world saved by grace and not by the works of the law).

NOTE: The word used for skirt (כָּנָף (kānāp̄;H3671) is most commonly translated as “wings” as we read back in Ruth 2:12, “The LORD recompense thy work, and a full reward be given thee of the LORD God of Israel, under whose wings (כָּנָף (kānāp̄; H3671thou art come to trust.” But as we stated earlier, this is the desire of every believer as we read in the Book of Psalms:

Psalms 17:8,  “Keep me as the apple of the eye, hide me under the shadow of thy wings(כָּנָף (kānāp̄; H3671),”

Psalms 36:7, “How excellent [is] thy lovingkindness, O God! therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of thy wings (כָּנָף (kānāp̄; H3671).”

Psalm 63:7, “Because thou hast been my help, therefore in the shadow of thy wings(כָּנָף (kānāp̄; H3671will I rejoice.

Psalms 91:4, “:He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings (כָּנָף (kānāp̄; H3671shalt thou trust: his truth [shall be thy] shield and buckler.

Kinsman Redeemer

Note Also that the words “Near Kinsman” is translated from the Hebrew word גָּאַל (gā’al)H1350 , which is translated 18x in the Bible as “Redeemer” as we find in the following examples which all unequivocally point to the LORD Jesus Christ:

Job 19:25, “For I know [that] my redeemer H1350 liveth, and [that] he shall stand at the latter [day] upon the earth:

Psalm 19:14, “Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength,and my redeemer. H1350

Psalm 78:35,And they remembered that God [was] their rock, and the high God their redeemer. H1350

Proverbs 23:11, “For their redeemer H1350 [is] mighty; he shall plead their cause with thee.”

Isaiah 44:6, “Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer H1350 the LORD of hosts; I [am] the first, and I [am] the last; and beside me [there is] no God.” (See also Rev 2:8 and Rev 22:13)

Isaiah 48:17, “Thus saith the LORD, thy Redeemer, H1350 the Holy One of Israel; I [am] the LORD thy God which teacheth thee to profit, which leadeth thee by the way [that] thou shouldest go.”

Isaiah 54:5, “For thy Maker [is] thine husband; the LORD of hosts [is] his name; and thy Redeemer H1350 the Holy One of Israel;The God of the whole earth shall he be called.”

In Verse 10, “And he said, Blessed [be] thou of the Lord, my daughter: [for] thou hast shewed more kindness in the latter end than at the beginning, inasmuch as thou followedst not young men, whether poor or rich.”  Boaz realizes that he is old enough to be Ruth’s father and that he would not normally be appealing to a younger woman. Boaz Blessed Ruth in the Name of the Lord and again called her “daughter”! Boaz also was speaking comfortably to Ruth, similar to what we read in Isaiah 40:1 & 2, “Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God. Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned: for she hath received of the LORD’S hand double for all her sins.

In Verse 11, “And now, my daughter, fear not; I will do to thee all that thou requirest: for all the city of my people doth know that thou [art] a virtuous woman.” The meaning of a virtuous woman can be found in Proverbs 31:10-31 and Titus 2:5. For more on what it means to be a virtuous woman according to the Bible, please see:  https://bereansearching.com/2017/01/24/who-can-find-a-virtuous-woman-proverbs-3110-31/ 

In Verse 12, “And now it is true that I [am thy] near kinsman: howbeit there is a kinsman nearer than I.” This is much more straightforward, because there is another closer living relative to Elimilech, who has the first right of refusal, that could serve as the kinsman redeemer.  (More on this later in Chapter 4)

In Verse 13, “Tarry this night, and it shall be in the morning, that if he will perform unto thee the part of a kinsman, well; let him do the kinsman’s part: but if he will not do the part of a kinsman to thee, then will I do the part of a kinsman to thee, as the Lord liveth: lie down until the morning.” Boaz promises Ruth of his intent to marry her if the closer relative refuses. Boaz’s instruction to Ruth is simply to lay down until morning, and therefore was telling her to go to sleep. Psalm 4:8, “I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, LORD, only makest me dwell in safety.” Proverbs 3:24, “When thou liest down, thou shalt not be afraid: yea, thou shalt lie down, and thy sleep shall be sweet.” Ruth was safe with Boaz as the believers are with Jesus.

At His Feet…Showing Obedience and Servitude

In Verse 14, “And she lay at his feet until the morning: and she rose up before one could know another. And he said, Let it not be known that a woman came into the floor.”  Ruth remained safely laying at Boaz’s feet through the night until morning, and, as was mentioned earlier, rising up is symbolic of resurrection to life. The spiritual implications remain unclear at this time regarding not letting it be known that a woman was on the threshing floor.  Regardless, it is worth reviewing some other verses pertaining to being at the feet of Jesus:

Matthew 15:30, “And great multitudes came unto him, having with them [those that were] lame, blind, dumb, maimed, and many others, and cast them down at Jesus’ feet; and he healed them:”

Mark 5:22, “And, behold, there cometh one of the rulers of the synagogue, Jairus by name; and when he saw him, he fell at his feet,

Luke 7:38-47,48, “And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe [them] with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed [them] with the ointment.

Finally we have the two complimentary verses from Isaiah 52:7 “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!”

and Romans 10:15, “And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!

In Verse 15, “Also he said, Bring the vail that [thou hast] upon thee, and hold it. And when she held it, he measured six [measures] of barley, and laid [it] on her: and she went into the city.” The barley represents the Word of God, the six is linked to mankind created on the sixth day, and going into the city is where the believers are to be fed with the Word of God.

In Verse 16,And when she came to her mother in law, she said, Who [art] thou, my daughter? And she told her all that the man had done to her.”  It is likely that Naomi was really enquiring about what happened overnight, and so Ruth explained that Boaz promised to be the kinsman redeemer if the nearer kinsman forebears.

In Verse 17, “And she said, These six [measures] of barley gave he me; for he said to me, Go not empty unto thy mother in law.”  Given that Naomi is representative of the remnant saved by grace from National Israel, it is clear that Ruth is representative of the Gentiles bringing the gospel of salvation through Jesus Christ (represented by the barley) to that remnant.

In Verse 18Then said she, Sit still, my daughter, until thou know how the matter will fall: for the man will not be in rest, until he have finished the thing this day.” “Sit still” is from the Hebrew word, יָשַׁב (yāšaḇ) H3427, which is most often as dwell (437x), inhabitant (221x), sit (172x), abide (70x), inhabit (39x), etc. Clearly Naomi is instructing Ruth to abide with her until the day’s events have fully unfolded. Interestingly, it is the same word that we find in the 23rd Psalm, verse 6, “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell H3427 in the house of the LORD for ever.” Naomi knew Boaz was fully committed to his mission to fulfill his promise to Ruth.

Chapter 4

In Verse 1 we read, “Then went Boaz up to the gate, and sat him down there: and, behold, the kinsman of whom Boaz spake came by; unto whom he said, Ho, such a one! turn aside, sit down here. And he turned aside, and sat down.” Boaz went and sat down at the entrance gate, presumably of the village of Bethlehem, to hold a conference with the unnamed nearer kinsman of Naomi’s deceased husband Elimelech.

In verse 2, we read that in keeping with “And he took ten men of the elders of the city, and said, Sit ye down here. And they sat down.” This was being done by Boaz in accordance with what we find in Deuteronomy 25:5-10.

Performing the Duty of Next of Kin, The Kinsman Redeemer and “the Loosing of the Shoe”

We read of the role of a kinsman in the event that a married brother dies leaving no offspring in Deuteronomy 25:5-10, “If brethren dwell together, and one of them die, and have no child, the wife of the dead shall not marry without unto a stranger: her husband’s brother shall go in unto her, and take her to him to wife, and perform the duty of an husband’s brother unto herAnd it shall be, that the firstborn which she beareth shall succeed in the name of his brother [which] is dead, that his name be not put out of Israel. And if the man like not to take his brother’s wife, then let his brother’s wife go up to the gate unto the elders, and say, My husband’s brother refuseth to raise up unto his brother a name in Israel, he will not perform the duty of my husband’s brother. Then the elders of his city shall call him, and speak unto him: and [if] he stand [to it], and say, I like not to take her; Then shall his brother’s wife come unto him in the presence of the elders, and loose his shoe from off his foot, and spit in his face, and shall answer and say, So shall it be done unto that man that will not build up his brother’s house. And his name shall be called in Israel, The house of him that hath his shoe loosed.

(It should also be noted here that there is an interesting irony to this law of the service of a kinsman for a dead brother, which could be easily missed without some careful study.  Boaz was descended from Pharez, who was one of twins born to Tamar via Judah when her husband had died and her husband’s brother, Onan, refused to honor his dead brother by faithfully fulfilling the duty of a kinsman (and “the thing which he did displeased the LORD: wherefore he slew him also” (God killed Onan) as a result, see: Gen 38:8-10 ).  Judah failed in his subsequent promise to Tamar to provide a younger brother, Shelah, as a husband to her, whereupon Tamar, in desperation, was forced to devise a way to obtain children directly from Judah. The point being that had Onan lovingly fulfilled his Kinsman duty for his dead brother, then Pharez, hence Boaz, would have never been born.  But God foreknew and predestinated these events to fulfill His purposes for His Glory and to teach us spiritual lessons. Is it not amazing that Boaz not only took on the very role of a kinsman for Ruth, for which one of his own living relatives was unwilling to take, but also that one of his own relatives in the past was unwilling to take, which if that relative had, then Boaz would never have been born…

Moreover, Jesus was descended from Pharaz, Boaz, Obed, Jesse, David, to Mary, and Jesus took it upon Himself to be the believer’s Kinsman Redeemer…when no one else ever would, or could, perform that Perfect Atoning and Reconciling Savior’s Role. Romans 5:6-11 tells us, “For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.”  And we are comforted by John 15:13, “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”)

And not only so, but we also joy in God through our LordJesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.

Verse 3, “And he said unto the kinsman, Naomi, that is come again out of the country of Moab, selleth a parcel of land, which [was] our brother Elimelech’s:”  This discourse tells us that Naomi sold what ever property was previously the inheritance of Elimelech’s after returning from Moab and that both Boaz and the the unnamed kinsman were considered to be “brothers” of Elimelech qualifying them in order of nearness in relationship to Elimelech to serve in the role of kinsman redeemer.”

Verse 4, “And I thought to advertise thee, saying, Buy it before the inhabitants, and before the elders of my people. If thou wilt redeem [it], redeem [it]: but if thou wilt not redeem [it, then] tell me, that I may know: for [there is] none to redeem [it] beside thee; and I [am] after thee. And he said, I will redeem [it].” This is straightforward and the result was that the unnamed nearer kinsman initially accepted the role of redeemer.

Verse 5, “Then said Boaz, What day thou buyest the field of the hand of Naomi, thou must buy [it] also of Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of the dead, to raise up the name of the dead upon his inheritance.” Boaz made clear that along with redeeming the land the unnamed kinsman would have to marry Ruth “the Moabitess”. That was the deal breaker.  A Moabitess was a cursed stranger and too difficult a task for a normal person from the house of Judah to bear.  (More on this below under Redemption)

Verse 6, “And the kinsman said, I cannot redeem [it] for myself, lest I mar mine own inheritance: redeem thou my right to thyself; for I cannot redeem [it].” As was made clear, the nearer kinsman could not fulfill the role of the kinsman redeemer.

Verse 7, “Now this [was the manner] in former time in Israel concerning redeeming and concerning changing, for to confirm all things; a man plucked off his shoe, and gave [it] to his neighbour: and this was a testimony in Israel.Therefore the kinsman said unto Boaz, Buy [it] for thee. So he drew off his shoe.” This fulfilled the sign as commanded in Deuteronomy 25:9, ” Then shall his brother’s wife come unto him in the presence of the elders, and loose his shoe from off his foot, and spit in his face, and shall answer and say, So shall it be done unto that man that will not build up his brother’s house.” The historical account does not say anything about Naomi or Ruth spitting in the man’s face, and it is both unlikely and unnecessary at that point, given the stand-in offer of Boaz.

Verse 9, “And Boaz said unto the elders, and [unto] all the people, Ye [are] witnesses this day, that I have bought all that [was] Elimelech’s, and all that [was] Chilion’s and Mahlon’s, of the hand of Naomi.” Boaz publicly testified that he was fulfilling the role of kinsman redeemer for the estate of Elimelech and his sons Mahlon and Chilion on behalf of the widow Naomi.

Verse 10, “Moreover Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of Mahlon, have I purchased to be my wife, to raise up the name of the dead upon his inheritance, that the name of the dead be not cut off from among his brethren, and from the gate of his place: [ye are] witnesses this day.” The role of kinsman redeemer included raising up seed (children) in the name of the deceased men to leave them an heritage. Just as Boaz purchased Ruth through redemption, Jesus was willing to pay all for His Bride, Jesus was like the man in the parable of Matthew 13:44, “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field.

Verse 11, “And all the people that [were] in the gate, and the elders, said, [We are] witnesses. The LORD make the woman that is come into thine house like Rachel and like Leah, which two did build the house of Israel: and do thou worthily in Ephratah, and be famous in Bethlehem:”   Here we are provided a lot of information.  Rachel and Leah were the wives of Jacob, from whom came eight of the tribes of Israel (Rachel had two sons, Leah had six).  This was a “Prophetic” blessing from the people, which was that Ruth (and hence Naomi) would become like Rachel and Leah, in that Ruth would be in effect the mother of the “eternal Israel” through Jesus.   And what about Ephratah?… and being famous in Bethlehem?

In 1 Chronicles 4:4 we read that, “And Penuel the father of Gedor, and Ezer the father of Hushah. These are the sons of Hur, the firstborn of Ephratah, the father of Bethlehem.

And then the famous prophesy of the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ in Bethlehem through the prophet Micah, where in Micah 5:2, “But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, [though] thou be little among the thousands of Judah, [yet] out of thee shall he come forth unto me [that is] to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth [have been] from of old, from everlasting.

Verse 12,  “And let thy house be like the house of Pharez, whom Tamar bare unto Judah, of the seed which the LORD shall give thee of this young woman.” This is a reminder that the house of Judah was blessed through Pharez and Boaz was descended from Pharez and this blessing from the people was upon Ruth on behalf of Naomi.

Verse 13, “So Boaz took Ruth, and she was his wife: and when he went in unto her, the LORD gave her conception, and she bare a son.” Even the conception was providentially planned and ordained by God for His ultimate Glory, through Jesus Christ as a result of that conception.

Verse 14, “And the women said unto Naomi, Blessed [be] the LORD, which hath not left thee this day without a kinsman, that his name may be famous in Israel.” Yes, God Provided Naomi with a valiant Kinsman Redeemer, in Boaz in the temporal realm and through Jesus Christ in the eternal spiritual realm.

Verse 15, “And he shall be unto thee a restorer of [thy] life, and a nourisher of thine old age: for thy daughter in law, which loveth thee, which is better to thee than seven sons, hath born him.” Ruth, Naomi’s daughter-in-law, turned out to be the vehicle by which Naomi would be blessed in untold ways and even better than seven sons!

Verse 16, “Ruth And Naomi took the child, and laid it in her bosom, and became nurse unto it.” How beautiful a picture that is! Very similar to Anna the prophetess seeing baby Jesus in the temple in Jerusalem in Luke 2:36-38, “And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity; And she [was] a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served [God] with fastings and prayers night and day. And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem.

The Genealogy of David, Hence Jesus Christ, Our Lord God and Savior

In Ruth 17-22, “And the women her neighbours gave it a name, saying, There is a son born to Naomi; and they called his name Obed: he [is] the father of Jesse, the father of David. Now these [are] the generations of Pharez: Pharez begat Hezron, And Hezron begat Ram, and Ram begat Amminadab, And Amminadab begat Nahshon, and Nahshon begat Salmon, And Salmon begat Boaz, and Boaz begat Obed, And Obed begat Jesse, and Jesse begat David.”  This genealogy is entirely consistent with Matthew 1:2-6.  The key point here is to show that David (hence Jesus) is of the seed of Abraham through the union of Boaz and Ruth, and therefore Jesus, having a body of flesh and bones like us, is therefore qualified as a Brother to serve as a Kinsman Redeemer for the eternal Israel (all believers).    (see also Proverbs 18:24 and John 15:13)

Redemption, What Does it Spiritually Mean to Say that Jesus is the Believer’s Kinsman Redeemer?

When Adam and Eve sinned back in the Book of Genesis, they lost their (and all of mankind’s) birthright to the earth, their first estate, which was lost to the devil.  And they also lost their lives and died without a redeemer. When Jesus, as the Lamb of God, paid the price for every believer’s sins in the substitutionary Atonement that was finished at the cross, Jesus also paid the full price of redemption as the eternal Kinsman Redeemer.  The unnamed nearer kinsman, represents anyone of all humankind, going all the way back to Adam (remembering that initially Adam was also “sinless” before the fall), who both unwilling and unable to assume that role of kinsman redeemer, so Jesus willingly took it upon Himself to fulfill that role.

We should also remember that Jesus is both our “Near Kinsman” and “Redeemer” because Jesus is counted as our Brethren as we read in Hebrews 2:16-18, “For verily he took not on [him the nature of] angels; but he took on [him] the seed of AbrahamWherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto [his] brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things [pertaining] to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted.” Jesus had to take upon Himself a body of flesh and bones and be descended from Abraham, hence Adam (through Judah to David to Mary).  We also know from 1 Corinthians 15:22, “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” and 1 Corinthians 15:45, “And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam [was] made a quickening spirit.

Exodus 6:6, “Wherefore say unto the children of Israel, I [am] the LORD,and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will rid you out of their bondage, and I will redeem you with a stretched out arm, and with great judgments:

Job 19:25, “For I know [that] my redeemer liveth, and [that] he shall stand at the latter [day] upon the earth:

Conclusion: The LORD Jesus Christ Is The True Kinsman Redeemer in the Book of Ruth

We know that the Lord God is the ultimate Redeemer.

In Psalm 106:10 we read how God save the nation of Israel from Egypt in Moses’s day, “And he saved them from the hand of him that hated [them], and redeemed them from the hand of the enemy.

In Psalm 130:7 & 8, we read, “Let Israel hope in the LORD: for with the LORD [there is] mercy, and with him [is] plenteous redemption. And he shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities.

Redemption is also like paying a ransom.

In Isaiah 35:10 we read, “And the ransomed of the LORD shall return, and come to Zion with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads: they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.

In Isaiah 48:17, “Thus saith the LORD, thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel; I [am] the LORD thy God which teacheth thee to profit, which leadeth thee by the way that thou shouldest go.”

And in the New Testament,

Ephesians 1:3-7, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly [places] in ChristAccording as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children byJesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved. In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;”

in Galatians 3:13 we read, “Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed [is] every one that hangeth on a tree:

In 1 Corinthians 1:30, “But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:

And finally, most emphatically, we read in 1 Peter 1:18-21, “Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, [as] silver and gold, from your vain conversation [received] by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spotWho verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you, Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.

And we see God’s hand was always working behind the scenes in the book of Ruth: God sent the famine that drove Naomi’s family to Moab, where Ruth was; God made certain that Ruth “happened” to come to the field of Boaz; God had previously instituted the law of kinsman redeemer in Deuteronomy 25. It was considered extremely important by the Israelites to continue the family line and preserving one’s divinely appointed inheritance; and God enabled Ruth to conceive. Through it all, God’s plan was to bring David into the world which would continue through to the genealogical line of Christ.

All believers must clearly see  that they destitute spiritual paupers, widows and strangers, that so desperately need Jesus, the Mighty Man of Wealth as their Kinsman Redeemer and eternally praise Him in Glory in Heaven. We all should be grateful for this profound illustration of that redemptive action as allegorically provided in the Book of Ruth.

The Book of Ruth is an amazing example of God’s providence, mercy, grace, love, and comfort!  It shows how God intervenes throughout time and space to perfectly achieve His purposes. Some have called it a love story, and indeed that it true, but it is more than just the earthly story about the love between Boaz and Ruth, it is more importantly a glorious picture of the eternal spiritual love that God has for His eternal church (The Bride of Jesus Christ) made up of believers throughout time from both the Jew and Gentile nations.

In Psalm 146:9 we read,The LORD preserveth the strangers; he relieveth the fatherless and widow: but the way of the wicked he turneth upside down.”  The account of Ruth is about a destitute “widow” and “stranger”, Ruth, who accompanied another widow, Naomi, a “widow” indeed, finding grace and blessing from God, while the account of Esther is about an orphan (“fatherless”) being blessed by God, who becomes queen of a glorious kingdom.  In both cases, they spiritually represent all of God’s elect, His Church, and how the miraculous intercession of God was necessary through them to bring about the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem at the appointed time.  At the same time, we are also provided the unequivocal proofs that God perfectly crafted the events and the recording of them to reveal His Magnificent Salvation Plan through the Person and Work of the Lord Jesus Christ to save sinners Who God calls out of darkness and despair.  As a result we are comforted in the knowledge that, as we read in Romans 8:28, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to [his] purposeFor whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate [to be] conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called:and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who [can be] against us?

Postscript: “…God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as [it is] this day, to save much people alive.Genesis 50:20

We also see that God has provided some interesting factual insights regarding Himself in the Book of Ruth.  We can see that Jesus was descended (through Mary’s line from David via Nathan, See Mathew 6:5) via an incestuous relationship (through Ruth, hence Moab, hence Lot with Lot’s daughter).  We are also reminded of another unseemly point when we are provided this verse, Ruth chapter 4, verse 12, “And let thy house be like the house of Pharez, whom Tamar bare unto Judah, of the seed which the LORD shall give thee of this young woman.” Tamar was the daughter-in-law of Judah and she played the harlot (prostitute) to entice Judah in order to conceive Pharez by him, and Jesus’s earthly lineage is via Pharez (“Phares” in Matthew 1:3 and Luke 3:33). Moreover, the mother of Boaz (Booz in Matthew 1:5 and Luke 3:32) was named Rahab (also as “Rachab” in Matthew 1:5), and Rahab is the name of a harlot whom Joshua (meaning “Saviour”, the same as the Greek “Jesus”) saved, when the city of Jericho was destroyed, see: Joshua 6:17. Even David, with whom Jesus is linked by birth through Mary via David’s son Nathan (Luke 3:31), was both an adulterer and pre-meditated murderer (David orchestrated the death of Bathsheba’s husband, Uriah the Hittite). As was mentioned in the body of this study, these sordid historical aspects of the lineage of Jesus were all included in the Bible by God, very deliberately, to show us how God was willing to clearly and unequivocally associate Himself with sinful mankind from every possible perspective (and yet he Himself knew no sin, 2 Corinthians 5:21) in order to take the believers’ places on the cross, and to pay the full price of redemption as our Kinsman Redeemer, saving us from what would have otherwise been an eternity in Hell.  Jesus came to save sinners.  Praise God from Whom all blessings flow! Hallelujah!


An Exposition of the Book of Esther: A Christian Commentary

September 19, 2009

lotThe casting of “pur” or “lot” in the Book of Esther is like the rolling of dice, but as we know from Proverbs 16:33, “The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of the Lord.

An Exposition of the Book of Esther: The Little Known (Little Understood?) Book of Prophecy that Reveals God’s Magnificent Plan of Salvation Through the Person and Work of Jesus Christ

The Book of Esther is read every year to the assembled congregations of the Jewish people in their synagogues to the present day.  It is read as part of the celebration of the Feast of Purim (also known as the “Feast of Lots” which are objects used as a form of divination, something like “dice”, and from which we get the term “lottery”.)  The feast is celebrated to remember the deliverance of the Jews whose date of destruction, their judgment day, was pre-determined by the casting of “pur” or “lot” (Esther 9:24) to be at the end of the year, but was ultimately, amazingly, turned into a day of deliverance and salvation, in accordance with God’s Will, which was all pre-ordained by God (Proverbs 16:33).

The Book of Esther is indeed about the miraculous physical deliverance of the Jews of national Israel (the physical descendants of Abraham).   More importantly, however, it is also about the miraculous spiritual deliverance of the true “Jews,” the body of believers, the Church of Jesus Christ (the spiritual descendants of Abraham through Christ who include a remnant of both national Israel and the Gentile nations).  Because the Book of Esther has both an earthly (historical) and a Heavenly (spiritual) meaning, it is an historical “parable.”  While it does provide an account of an actual period in history, it was nonetheless written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit and has been incorporated into God’s Word the Bible.  It is a vignette orchestrated by God in the first instance (historically) and written down as precisely crafted in the Bible in the second instance (spiritually) to fulfill God’s own purposes.

Perhaps the most important of God’s purposes for the Book of Esther was to convey, in one short (ten chapter) account, most, if not all, of the key elements of His magnificent salvation plan.  The message of the Book of Esther is the same Gospel message that can be found everywhere else in the Bible as it focuses on the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ.  The only difference is that, each time Jesus is found in the Bible, we can learn more about Him and God’s Gospel plan through Him (which glorifies God in the process).  However, to truly “see” Jesus (to believe with our hearts and not just our minds), we must have our spiritual eyes opened by God.  Given that this can be the case, then another purpose for God having provided us with the Book of Esther is that it will edify and strengthen the faith of the saints (the believers).

Esther is also a prophetic book because it culminates with a picture of Judgment Day at the end of creation and the eternity in Heaven that will follow for all who are counted among the people of Jesus… and the eternal death and destruction in hell for all those who are not.

So where do we see Jesus in the Book of Esther?  Some Christian commentaries conclude that it is Esther who, “as the advocate for her people,” is the deliverer of salvation to her people and therefore portrays Jesus Christ.  Is that correct?   Let’s look at the six main characters in the order of their appearance:

1) King Ahasuerus: A very great and powerful king who reigned over a “glorious  kingdom” with the “honour of his excellent majesty.”

2) Queen Vashti: A beautiful queen, the first wife of the king Ahasuerus.  When she was bidden by the king (by his “commandment”) to a great feast, she refused to come while holding her own feast for the women; so the king decreed that she could never again come into his presence.  He also decreed that her royal estate be given “to another that is better than she.”  King Ahasuerus sent letters to all his provinces to be published “to every people after their language.”

3) Mordecai: A certain Jew, “the son of Jair, the son of Shimei, the son of Kish, a Benjamite“, who lived in the king’s palace and sat in the king’s gate. He was the nearest kinsman to Esther, being her elder cousin.

4) Esther: A fair and beautiful maid, a virgin, (and an orphan, because “for she had neither mother or father”)  who was brought up by Mordecai, and he “took for his own daughter“… “when her father and mother were dead“.)  Esther pleased king  Ahasuerus and “she obtained kindness of him.”  “And the king loved Esther above all the women, and she obtained grace and favour in his sight more than all the virgins; so that he set the royal crown upon her head, and made her queen instead of Vashti.

5) Hegai (Hege): The King’s Chamberlain, the keeper of the women (evidently a eunuch). (We also read about another King’s Chamberlain in Chapter 4, named Hatach, who is evidently also a eunuch.)

6) Haman: A chief prince of king Ahasuerus who because he saw that Mordecai bowed  not to him (Haman), nor reverenced him, “Haman sought to destroy all the Jews that  were throughout the whole kingdom of Ahasuerus, even the people of Mordecai.

The Plot:  King Ahasuerus replaces his first queen, Vashti, for her disobedience, and gives her royal estate to Esther (the Jewish orphan raised up by her elder kinsman, Mordecai) who has been anointed by the King’s Chamberlain, Hegai.  Later, prince Haman, in his prideful wrath, convinced the king to decree the destruction of “a certain people” (the Jews) from throughout the land at the end of the year by accusing that they did not keep the king’s laws.  Haman also sought to have Mordecai hanged on the highest gallows that Haman had made.  When Mordecai heard about it, he put on sackcloth and ashes outside the palace gate.  “Then called Esther for Hatach, one of the king’s chamberlains, whom he had appointed to attend upon her, and gave him a commandment to Mordecai, to know what it was, and why it was.” Later under commandment from Mordecai, Esther went into the kings presence (at the risk of death, but walking by faith…”if I perish I perish“) to inform the king (over time through two sequential banquets) of Haman’s plot to kill her people.  However, Mordecai, because of an earlier act of faithfulness to the king (which Esther had “certified the king [thereof] in Mordecai’s name”, although the king had forgotten for a time), was honored by the king, and arrayed in the king’s royal apparel wearing the king’s royal crown and allowed to ride through the street of the city on the king’s horse.  This was the very honor that Haman, because of his pride, had sought for himself.  Instead of receiving that honor as he expected, Haman was subsequently humiliated. Moreover, when Esther later revealed Haman’s plot to the king, and, as the king soon supposed Haman was about to assault Esther, Haman was ordered to be hung from the same gallows that he had made for Mordecai.

In the final battle, at the end of the year, where Haman had planned to have all the Jews destroyed and consumed in one day, all those who hated the Jews, including all of the ten sons of Haman were themselves removed “with the stroke of the sword, and slaughter, and destruction.”  The next day, after this great battle, the Jews rested from their enemies and “made it a day of feasting and gladness,” to be remembered and kept throughout every generation.  Finally, because the king had advanced Mordecai “next unto the king” (his right-hand man, so to speak), Mordecai was “great among the Jews, and accepted of the multitude of his brethren, seeking the wealth of his people, and speaking peace to all his seed.”  We also read earlier, after the death of Haman, that “Mordecai went out from the presence of the king in royal apparel of blue and white, and with a great crown of gold, and with a garment of fine linen and purple: and the city of Shushan rejoiced and was glad.  The Jews had light, and gladness, and joy, and honour.

The Spiritual “Types” Represented by Each Person In the Book of Esther 

If we compare this historical account with the rest of the Bible, we can find some amazing and unequivocal parallels between the following:

1)  King Ahasuerus with Heavenly Father (or more generically, Almighty God)

2) Queen Vashti with National Israel of the Old Testament

Vashti was a beautiful first queen, but she rebelled against the King and refused to come to his feast, but rather held her own fest for the women in the royal palace that belonged to the King.

3)  Mordecai with Jesus Christ (God as Savior)

It is Jesus Christ who delivers His people, the “Jews.”  He is the one who ascended to the Right Hand of God the Father.  Jesus is the one we read about in Revelation 19:11-16. Jesus wears the “many crowns”, riding the “white horse”, and Jesus bears the Name that is “Faithful and True“.  He is the one who Satan sought to destroy on the cross, but it was Jesus who instead vanquished Satan at the cross.  Jesus (as the God-Man) is the One Who nurtures the believers by serving in the role of their near kinsman.  We also know that at the Great Battle at the end of the age, on Judgment Day, all who are in league with Satan (the unbelievers) will be destroyed with him at that time.  Then will the “Jews” (the true believers in Jesus Christ, the Messiah, please see Romans 2:28-29) find rest from their enemies.  We also know that the believers are referred to throughout the Bible as the Bride of Jesus Christ (and Jesus Christ is also God).  That bride is described in the Bible with all the attributes ascribed to Esther.  The true believers replaced national Israel (pictured by Vashti), God’s former chosen people, whom He effectively divorced at the cross (please see Jeremiah 3:8 regarding the initial divorce by God of the first ten tribes of Israel, see also Isaiah 50:1) because they would not come when bidden to the final Passover Feast (they rejected Jesus as Messiah, the Perfect Passover Lamb of God, see also Luke 14:15-24).

4)  Queen Esther with the body of believers (from both Jews (the remnant) and Gentiles; the true “Jews” or the eternal Israel)

5)  Hegai (Hege)…and Hatach, the King’s Chamberlains, with God, the Holy Spirit

A chamberlain eunuch appointed by King Ahasuerus to attend Queen Esther whose name means either “eunuch” or “meditation“; “word“; “groaning“; “separation”, who prepared Esther to come into the presence of the King by purifications with nothing but what Hegai he appointed, and that was “six months with oil of myrrh, and six months with sweet odours, and with [other] things for the purifying of the women.”  Another of the King’s Chamberlains, who also would have had to have been a eunuch like Hegai, is named Hatach, Hathach [Hā’tăch]—meaning either “a gift” or “verily“(hence “truth”), and both attributes are clearly used in the Bible as representations of the Holy Ghost/Holy Spirit.   The Holy Spirit Annoints the believer, Is an Intermediary for them in prayer to God the Father, Is a Gift from God, and also is the “Spirit of Truth” Who leads the believer into all Truth (Jesus).  (Please see the more extensive exposition further below.)

6)  Haman with Satan

Regarding Haman’s role, from Isaiah 14:12-15, we clearly see that Satan, the chief prince of all the angels that became devils, in his great pride sought to “be like the most High,” but was subsequently consigned to Hell. (Note that Satan wanted to exalt his throne above the “stars” of God; In the Bible the stars represent the believers, typified by Esther (whose very name means “Star”).  We see this also clearly in Daniel 12:3, “And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.“)

Remember also, in Matthew 4:8-10, how the devil, like Haman to Mordecai, desired for Jesus to “fall down and worship” him, and Jesus answered, “Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.”

Biblical Validation of the Esther Exposition

             This commentary was not written with any presumption that this author understands every nuance of the Book of Esther.   No one (other than God Himself) can ever claim the ability to plumb the depths of the riches of God’s Word, the Bible.   However, if we humbly, faithfully, approach the Bible with no other pre-suppositions than that God is the sole Author of the Bible, then we can begin to see by that faith (albeit as “through a glass, darkly” 1 Corinthians 13:12) the truths that God has hidden within His Word.  As we have already learned, there is much more to the Bible than meets the “physical” eye, and it’s not just an intellectual exercise.  The Bible itself uses such terms such as “mystery” and “dark sayings” to describe how it has been uniquely crafted by God in a magnificent, and yes, even a mysterious way, whereby He has deliberately veiled or hidden the true spiritual meanings of its passages from those whom He has not given the “spiritual eyes and ears.”

In Mark 4:11+12 we read, “And he (Jesus Christ speaking to His disciples) said unto them, Unto you (the elect of God, all true believers) it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without (the non-elect), all [these] things are done in parables:  That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest at any time they should be converted, and [their] sins should be forgiven them.”  In the final analysis, it is only by the Grace of God that anyone is empowered to discover that Jesus Christ is the mystery and hidden wisdom of the whole Bible, and that salvation is by Him Alone. (See 1Corinthians 2:7+8.)

I Corinthians 2:13 teaches, “Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual” (i.e. scripture with scripture).  The only thing “dangerous” about this method of interpretation is that unless it is done faithfully, using the Bible as its own sole interpreter, men will arrive at wrong conclusions based on their own thoughts rather than those of God.

The Expositional Outline of the Prophetic Book of Esther:  

Comfort for the Believers at all Times (God’s Magnificent Salvation Plan Explained in Ten Chapters)

 (Psalms 68:5, “A father of the fatherless (i.e.,Esther), and a judge of the widows (i.e.,Ruth and Naomi), [is] God in his holy habitation.“)

I.          God’s Magnificent Salvation Plan: National Israel (under the Law) rebels: making a way for the remnant of both Jews and Gentiles (under Grace)(Esther 1:12 and Esther 1:19) Please see Romans 4:15

II.         God Remembers His Covenant:  The Establishment of the New and Better Covenant (Esther 2:1-4)   Please also see Hebrews 8:6-13.

  • Jesus Christ (Mordecai) Shows Mercy to the Fatherless (Esther)  (Esther 2:7)
  • The Work of the Holy Spirit in Purifying the Believer to enter into God’s presence (Esther): (Esther 2:15)
  •  A Rebellion Against the King by Those Who Kept the Door (The rebellion of Adam&Eve, or false prophets?) (Esther 2:21-23)

III.       Satan Given Dominion Over This Creation Immediately After the Fall of Adam (Esther 3:1 and Esther 8:5)  Please see Romans 6:23

IV.       The Atonement of Jesus Christ (Esther 4:1) followed by “three days and nights” of fasting.

V.        The Faith of the Saints (Christ’s Faith, Ephesians 3:11&12)  (Esther 5:1&2) Please see Hebrews 12:2, Numbers 24:17, and Psalms 45:6 (note that Esther did not put on “royal apparel” until the “third day”)

VI.       Palm Sunday (Esther 6:11)

VII.      The Last Passover Feast and Christ’s Victory over Satan at the Cross (Esther 7:10)

VIII.     The Great Commission and the New Testament Era Beginning at Pentecost (Esther 8:1-17)

IX.       Judgment Day and the Transition to Eternity

X.        Eternity in Heaven (Esther 10:3) Please see Galatians 3:16 & 29

NOTE: There is not one direct reference to God found anywhere in the Book of Esther.  As a result, Martin Luther declared it to be an apocryphal book.  It is also the only Old Testament book missing from the Dead Sea Scrolls, possibly because the Essene sect believed that Esther was not sufficiently faithful to the Mosaic Law, i.e., she married the “Gentile” Persian king.  Nonetheless, it is important to also note that Mordecai is specifically mentioned among those who returned to Jerusalem in the restoration following the initial captivity into Babylon as can be found in both Ezra 2:2 and Nehemiah 7:7. This double witness validates that Mordecai was a real person in history during the associated time period.

Selected Expanded Expositions From the Book of Esther

Esther 2:1: God Remembers His Covenant

             In Esther 2:1, we read, “After these things, when the wrath of king Ahasuerus was appeased, he remembered Vashti, and what she had done, and what was decreed against her.” This verse can in no way be interpreted as saying that King Ahasuerus changed his mind and later intended to restore Queen Vashti to her former estate, for Esther 2:4 and Esther 2:17 make it clear that she is replaced by Esther.  How then are we to interpret this verse?  When we realize that God had in effect been married to National Israel in the Old Testament as we read in Isaiah 50:1, “Thus saith the LORD, Where [is] the bill of your mother’s divorcement, whom I have put away? or which of my creditors [is it] to whom I have sold you? Behold, for your iniquities have ye sold yourselves, and for your transgressions is your mother put away.” and in effect did warn that he would put her away for her rebellion in Hosea 2:2, “Plead with your mother, plead: for she [is] not my wife, neither [am] I her husband: let her therefore put away her whoredoms out of her sight, and her adulteries from between her breasts;” and furthermore that He would betroth Himself to whom He had not been married as we read in Hosea 2:23, “And I will sow her unto me in the earth; and I will have mercy upon her that had not obtained mercy; and I will say to [them which were] not my people, Thou [art] my people; and they shall say, [Thou art] my God.”  We also know that this people who were “not my people” includes the remnant chosen by Grace out of all the world, including a remnant from National Israel (Hosea 2:16-20).

What else does the Bible say on this issue?  With respect to remembering Vashti we know that God never forgot His covenant with Israel for we read in Leviticus 26:42, “Then will I remember my covenant with Jacob, and also my covenant with Isaac, and also my covenant with Abraham will I remember; and I will remember the land.”  This is also repeated in the last four verses in Isaiah 16:60-63, beginning with “Nevertheless I will remember my covenant with thee in the days of thy youth, and I will establish unto thee an everlasting covenant.” God remembers his covenant and promises to establish a new and everlasting covenant (with the spiritual eternal Israel, the true believing Christians, out of all the world saved by grace and not by the works of the law). That is why we read in Luke 1:72, that Zacharias, under the inspiration of The Holy Spirit, said that in Jesus Christ, God was about, “To perform the mercy [promised] to our fathers, and to remember his holy covenant;”.  God remembered and performed His covenant to Israel with a new and everlasting covenant in the Person and Work of Jesus Christ.

Esther Chapter 3: The “Law” is Given

             In Esther chapter 3 we read where Haman, as the chief of the princes with him, because of His pride, reports to the king in verse 8, that there is a people that is scattered throughout the kingdom who do not keep the kings laws and the king should not suffer them to live.  Haman even offered a great sum of silver to bring about the people’s destruction in verse Esther 3:11, “And the king said unto Haman, The silver [is] given to thee, the people also, to do with them as it seemeth good to thee.”  Isn’t it an interesting “coincidence” that when God gave the commandment (the Law) to Adam and Eve not to eat of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil he told them that the day they ate of it the would die, the serpent (Satan) tempted them to not “keep the King’s law.”  Isn’t it also true that, until the cross, Satan was allowed to come before God (see Job 1:6 & 7) to be the accuser of the believers for not perfectly keeping the Law of God, for in Revelation 12:10 we read, “And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.”  Note also that the not only was Judgment Day in view when God gave the first commandment, i.e. Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin [is] death;” (in the second part of that verse is the way of escape that we read about in Esther chapter 8, “the gift of God [is] eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.“), but God allowed Satan to have dominion over this whole creation by right of conquest.  That is why Jesus said in John 18:36, “Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.”

Esther 4:1: The Atonement of Christ

            “When Mordecai perceived all that was done, Mordecai rent his clothes, and put on sackcloth with ashes, and went out into the midst of the city, and cried with a loud and a bitter cry;

A close look at Esther 4:1 will reveal a beautiful summation of the atonement of Jesus Christ, the One Who “perceived all” that God’s Law decrees.  He knew that He must come as the sin bearer to redeem His people and so He humbled Himself (typified by Mordecai’s putting on of sackcloth with ashes), as the king of Nineveh did in Jonah 3:6, “For word came unto the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, and he laid his robe from him, and covered [him] with sackcloth, and sat in ashes.”  Jesus humbled Himself by taking on a human body of low estate to become the sin bearer of all who would believe on Him.  Incidentally, if we look at Psalms 69:11, in this clearly Messianic Psalm that, “I made sackcloth also my garment; and I became a proverb to them.”  Please remember that this is the same Psalm that so particularly reveals the details of Christ’s atonement on the cross.  As a result it is the most frequently quoted Psalm referring to Jesus Christ in the New Testament, including that by Jesus Himself.  In Psalms 69:4, “They that hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of mine head: they that would destroy me, [being] mine enemies wrongfully, are mighty: then I restored [that] which I took not away.”  Compare this with John 15:24&25, “If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father.  But [this cometh to pass], that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause.”  In Psalms 69:21 we read that, “They gave me also gall for my meat; and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.”  That verse Messianically describes what happened to Jesus while He was hanging on the cross, as we find in Matthew 27:34, “They gave him vinegar to drink mingled with gall: and when he had tasted [thereof], he would not drink.”  Also in John 19:28-30 we read, “After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst.  Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a spunge with vinegar, and put [it] upon hyssop, and put [it] to his mouth.  When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.”  In verse 9 we find, Psalms 69:9, “For the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me.”  Compare this with John 2:17, “And his disciples remembered that it was written, The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up.” and Romans 15:3, “For even Christ pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on me.

If Jesus had not provided a substitutionary atonement for His people, the “Jews,” the Law would demand that they would perish at Judgment Day at the end of the age (typified by the end of the year in Esther).  When Jesus died on the cross in Jerusalem, Jesus completed that work and, like Mordecai, gave out a “loud and bitter cry” as we read Matthew 27:46, “And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”  Matthew 27:50, “Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost.” (see also Mark 15:34&37 and Luke 23:46)

Notice also the parallels between the actions of Esther (as a type for the Church) and Mordecai in Esther 4:4, “So Esther’s maids and her chamberlains came and told [it] her. Then was the queen exceedingly grieved; and she sent raiment to clothe Mordecai, and to take away his sackcloth from him: but he received [it] not.” with that of Peter (as another “type” of the Church) and Jesus when Peter attempted to physically defend Jesus and keep Him from His atoning work.  In John 18:10&11 we read, “Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest’s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant’s name was Malchus.  Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?

That cup was the cup of God’s wrath for sin that Jesus had to suffer.

In Esther 4:16 we read, “Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan, and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night or day: I also and my maidens will fast likewise; and so will I go in unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish.” Note that we had already compared Mordecai putting on sackcloth and sitting in ashes and giving out a loud and bitter cry being equivalent to the suffering atonement of Jesus Christ.  But now we can see mention of a period of three days and three nights. It is clearly reminiscent of the three days and three night period of Jesus atoning sacrifice, death and burial between the Garden of Gethsemane on Thursday night (Passover evening) until His Resurrection on Sunday morning,  on the third day, 1 Corinthians 15:4For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

Esther Chapter 5: Jesus’s Resurrection on the Third Day Made it Possible for Believers to Boldly Enter God’s Throne Room of Grace

Chapter 5 begins with, “Now it came to pass on the third day, that Esther put on [her] royal [apparel], and stood in the inner court of the king’s house, over against the king’s house: and the king sat upon his royal throne in the royal house, over against the gate of the house.” Note that Esther did not put on “royal apparel” until the “third day” and we know that Jesus rose from the dead on “the third day.” 

Esther boldly entered the throne room of King Ahasuerus, per the instruction given to her by Mordecai. Does not this parallel what we read in Hebrews 4:16, “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” 

And in Hebrews 10:19-22,  “Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of JesusBy a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh;  And having an high priest over the house of God; Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.

Also we read in Ephesians 3:11&12, “According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord: In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him.”  And in 2 Corinthians 5:7 we read, “(For we walk by faith, not by sight:)”

Jesus instructed us to freely ask…John 14:13&14, “And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do [it].  We also read in Philippians 4:6, “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

Also, in Psalm 65:4, “Blessed [is the man whom] thou choosest, and causest to approach [unto thee, that] he may dwell in thy courts: we shall be satisfied with the goodness of thy house, [even] of thy holy temple.

The Golden Sceptre of Grace (Another Type of Jesus Christ)

Regarding the Golden Sceptre held in the King’s hand (likely right hand)…these  verses clearly apply…and are therefore also a prefigurement of Jesus and His being the means by which we can boldly come before the Throne of God the Father to receive His Grace:

Genesis 49:10The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.” 

Numbers 24:17I shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not nigh: there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel,and shall smite the corners of Moab, and destroy all the children of Sheth.” 

Psalm 45:6, “Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre.”

Hebrews 1:8, “But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom.”

God’s has total control over the hearts of kings…Proverbs 21:1,  “The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will.” and in Daniel 4:25, “That they shall drive thee from men, and thy dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field, and they shall make thee to eat grass as oxen, and they shall wet thee with the dew of heaven, and seven times shall pass over thee, till thou know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will.

Esther Chapter 8: The New Testament Era Begins: The Great Commission and Pentecost (Which Occurs Only in the Third Month) 

              As additional confirmation that the parallels derived from Esther with God’s whole plan of salvation are correct, please look at Esther 8:9, which describes how on the 23rd day of the third month a new decree (“all that Mordecai commanded“) went forth by messengers on beasts under the commandment of Mordecai to every people and tongue in every province in the kingdom of King Ahasuerus.  This new decree, while not annulling the first decree, which originally allowed for the destruction of the “Jews” (the people of Mordecai), did offer a way of escape for the people of Mordecai from the judgment day set forth in the first decree. This is just like the Law condemning sinners was never annulled by God the Father, but God the Father provided The Way of escape from the just penalty for sin according to the Law through the Atoning Sacrifice of His Beloved Son, Jesus Christ.

NOTE: Is it only a coincidence that The Feast of Pentecost (also known as the Feast of “First Fruits” when the wheat first starts to ripen) is always during the third month of the Hebrew calendar (Sivan)?   On Pentecost in 33 AD (in the third month), we read in Acts 2:4-6, that the apostles were “all filled with the Holy Ghost and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.”  “And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven.  Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because every man heard them speak in his own language.”  And what they each heard the apostles speaking in his own language was “the wonderful works of God.”!  At that same time, Peter stood up and preached the Gospel of Salvation to that multitude, and of those who heard, about three thousand souls “gladly received his word were baptized.”

In Esther 8:9 we read, “Then were the king’s scribes called at that time in the third month, that [is], the month Sivan, on the three and twentieth [day] thereof; and it was written according to all that Mordecai commanded unto the Jews, and to the lieutenants, and the deputies and rulers of the provinces which [are] from India unto Ethiopia, an hundred twenty and seven provinces, unto every province according to the writing thereof, and unto every people after their language, and to the Jews according to their writing, and according to their language.

Is not that amazingly similar to the last words of Jesus after the resurrection and just prior to His Accession?…

Mordecai “Commanded” just as Jesus “Commanded”

Acts 1:4-8, “And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me. For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence. When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel? And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power. But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”  

This is entirely consistent with what we read in Matthew 28:18-20 (the last verses of Matthew), “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the HolyGhost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, [even] unto the end of the world. Amen.”

Please note the similarity of this language with what Jesus commanded in Mark 16:15, “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” and Acts 1:8, “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”  In Revelation 14:6, “And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people,

Note also how in Esther 8:17, “And in every province, and in every city, whithersoever the king’s commandment and his decree came, the Jews had joy and gladness, a feast and a good day. And many of the people of the land became Jews; for the fear of the Jews fell upon them.”  Doesn’t this sound exactly like the conversion that happened at the beginning of the New Testament era starting at Pentecost* in 33 A.D. when the Gospel of Salvation through Jesus Christ was first proclaimed?  The New Testament did not annul the Old Testament Law, but it offered the Good News of the Way of escape through Jesus Christ from the penalty of the Law, “the wages of sin is death“.   This is clear as we read in Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin [is] death; but the gift of God [is] eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”  Didn’t many of the people obtain the necessary “fear” of God and become Christians (the true “Jews”), thereby obtaining peace with God, as a result?  To have the fear of the Jews can also be interpreted as having the same fear of God that the Jews had.  And as we are told in Psalm 34:9, “O fear the LORD, ye his saints: for [there is] no want (no lack) to them that fear him.” (and remember that Amalek, the ancestor of Haman, “feared not GodDeuteronomy 25:18, and therefore God said that He would blot out the remembrance of Amalek forever.) We also read in Psalm 36:1, “The transgression of the wicked saith within my heart, [that there is] no fear of God before his eyes.”  And we know that Haman was “wicked”.

Is not this repeated in the account given in Acts 10:42-45?  There we read, “And he (Jesus) commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God [to be] the Judge of quick and dead.  To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins.  While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word.  And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost.

And let’s look further at Acts chapter 2 to see how closely it correlates with Esther Chapter 8.

Gladness and Feasting

We see the word “gladness” is used similarly in Acts: 2:46, “And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,”

Fear of the Jews, Fear of God

We see that the word “fear” is used in Acts 2: 43, “And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.

The Role of Pentecost as the Feast of the First Fruits

We should also note the significance of Pentecost as it is the second of the three major feast days in the Hebrew calendar between Passover in the first month (Nissan) and the Feast of Tabernacles in the seventh month (Ethanim/Tishri).  We see it described by God in Leviticus 23:15&16, “And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the sabbath, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven sabbaths shall be complete:Even unto the morrow after the seventh sabbath shall ye number fifty days; and ye shall offer a new meat offering unto the LORD.” and Deuteronomy 16:9, “Seven weeks shalt thou number unto thee: begin to number the seven weeks from [such time] as thou beginnest [to put] the sickle to the corn.” (the corn refers to barley corn, and the seven weeks, or 49 days, plus one equals 50 days or “Pentecost”)

The barley harvest lasted from Passover to Pentecost…and is it just a coincidence that in Ruth 1:22 we read that Ruth and her mother-in-law, Naomi, “...came to Bethlehem in the beginning of barley harvest.“?   Moreover, in Ruth 2:23 we read that Ruth found favor in the eyes of Boaz such that she was able to “…glean unto the end of barley harvest and of wheat harvest;” (e.g., from Spring until the Fall). For more on the Book of Ruth, please see: https://bereansearching.com/2011/09/21/fatherless-and-widows-understanding-the-biblical-books-of-esther-and-ruth-a-work-in-progress/

So this period between Passover and the Feast of Tabernacles (which is at the time of the final harvest) spiritually represents the whole New Testament (New Covenant) era in which we see the “first fruits” of salvation, when the Holy Spirit was first poured out at the preaching of Jesus Christ in 33 AD on Pentecost until the end of time when the final harvest of souls are brought into God’s harvest house, Heaven, as typified by the Feast of Tabernacles (or Feast of “Ingathering”).  Remembering also that in 1 Corinthians 15:20, “But now is Christ risen from the dead, [and] become the first fruits of them that slept.” Therefore, just as the first grains of the barley harvest were prophetic and symbolic of Jesus Christ as the first of mankind to be harvested, the first grains of the wheat harvest gleaned at Pentecost are prophetic and symbolic of the elect of God who will participate in the first resurrection (i.e., everyone called and chosen to become the children of God from the time of Adam until Christ’s return). 

Esther Chapter 9: The End of the Year, Judgment Day, and the Transition to Eternity

             With this concept in mind let’s look at Esther, Chapter nine.  There we read of a slaughter of Haman’s ten sons (a probable reference to the ten horns/ten kings that “completely” rule in the apostate corporate churches with the beast/antichrist during the final tribulation according to Revelation 17:12) on the thirteenth day of the last month of the year.  We read in Esther 9:18, “But the Jews that [were] at Shushan assembled together on the thirteenth [day] thereof, and on the fourteenth thereof; and on the fifteenth [day] of the same they rested, and made it a day of feasting and gladness.” 

It is also noteworthy that the Feast of Unleavened Bread (which presaged the partaking of Jesus Christ) also began on the fourteenth day coincident with the Passover (that was Judgment Day for Jesus and hence the believers, but then we read in Leviticus 23:5&6, “In the fourteenth [day] of the first month at even [is] the LORD’S passover. And on the fifteenth day of the same month is the feast of unleavened bread unto the LORD: seven days ye must eat unleavened bread.” And then in Numbers 28:16&17, “And in the fourteenth day of the first month [is] the passover of the LORD. And in the fifteenth day of this month [is] the feast: seven days shall unleavened bread be eaten.”

Please note how it was also on the fifteenth day that God declares the children of Israel departed from their bondage in Egypt, because of what we read in Numbers 33:3&4 “And they departed from Rameses in the first month, on the fifteenth day of the first month; on the morrow after the passover the children of Israel went out with an high hand in the sight of all the Egyptians. For the Egyptians buried all their firstborn, which the LORD had smitten among them: upon their gods also the LORD executed judgments.” And is not this quite interesting, in the Book of Revelation 11:12, we find almost the exact same kind of wording, “And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them.” So God was clearly presaging “the end of the world” in both Esther Chapter 9 and Numbers 33, in that the children of Israel represented the body of Believers going up to Heaven and the Egyptians, represented all the unsaved of the world, watching them depart and being prepared for Judgment!  

The fifteenth day has other profound significance.  The fifteenth day is the day of the seventh month (Ethanim/Tishri) that begins the last of the three holy feasts (the only one not yet fulfilled), the Feast of Tabernacles! 

The Feast of Tabernacles (also called Feast of Booths or Sukkot in Hebrew when those celebrating the feast would do so while living in booths made from tree branches) was the seventh and final feast commanded in the Torah (the first five books of the Old Testament). Most significantly, it was the third of and final of the three yearly occasions when all Jewish men were to appear in Jerusalem before the Lord to worship as we read in Deuteronomy 16:16, “Three times in a year shall all thy males appear before the LORD thy God in the place which he shall choose; in the feast of unleavened bread (starting with Passover), and in the feast of weeks (Pentecost), and in the feast of tabernacles: and they shall not appear before the LORD empty:”.  It was also when the temple in Jerusalem was being dedicated during this time as we read in 1 Kings 8:2, “And all the men of Israel assembled themselves unto king Solomon at the feast in the month Ethanim, which [is] the seventh month.” 

And similarly, The Feast of Tabernacles was when the Jews returned from captivity to rebuild the temple during the time of Ezra as we read in Ezra 3:1-6, “And when the seventh month was come, and the children of Israel [were] in the cities, the people gathered themselves together as one man to JerusalemThen stood up Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and his brethren the priests, and Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and his brethren, and builded the altar of the God of Israel, to offer burnt offerings thereon, as [it is] written in the law of Moses the man of God. And they set the altar upon his bases; for fear [was] upon them because of the people of those countries: and they offered burnt offerings thereon unto the LORD, [even] burnt offerings morning and evening. They kept also the feast of tabernacles, as [it is] written, and [offered] the daily burnt offerings by number, according to the custom, as the duty of every day required; And afterward [offered] the continual burnt offering, both of the new moons, and of all the set feasts of the LORD that were consecrated, and of every one that willingly offered a freewill offering unto the LORD. From the first day of the seventh month began they to offer burnt offerings unto the LORD. But the foundation of the temple of the LORD was not [yet] laid.

In the New Testament, Jesus preached during the Feast of Tabernacles (see John 7:2) in John 7:37-39, “In the last day, that great [day] of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet [given]; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)” (Note: Interestingly enough, the seventh month was then called “Ethanim” (now Tishri), which means “strong” “valiant” or “constantly flowing” as pertaining to “living water”.)

In Leviticus 23:33-43, the Feast of Tabernacles was established to take place on the fifteenth day of the seventh month, lasting for seven days. The Feast of Tabernacles begins just five days after the Day of Atonement and 15 days after the Rosh Hashanah (Feast of Trumpets), and all three convocations in the seventh month are pointers to heralding the end of the world, Judgment Day, and subsequent abiding in Heaven for the believers). The Feast of Tabernacles begins on the fifteenth day of the seventh month, shortly after the completion of the fall harvest period, and continues for seven more days and ends on the 23rd day of the month. The time marked a celebration of the harvest as well as a remembrance of God’s provision during Israel’s 40 years in the wilderness living in tents (or tabernacles). It was also the time that the participants would bring in a tenth of their harvest (tithe) to Jerusalem.  It was also a holy day or Sabbath wherein no work could occur. Each day included offerings to the Lord, with the eighth day (the 23rd day) marking another holy day when no work is done

What does all this mean?…The Feast of Tabernacles points to the completion of the Eternal Temple of God, The New Jerusalem, all of the work is done, the departing of the believers from the bondage to sin and death, and it consists of all of the believers in Heaven praising God forever! 

The End of the Year is When Eternity Begins

             In the Book of Esther, the first decree went forth into all the great kingdom of Ahasuerus to be carried out in the end of the year in the twelfth month, Adar.  Isn’t it interesting that just as it is obvious that the twelfth month in the Book of Esther can be equated to the end of the year, God Himself defines the “end of the year” to a time of harvest.  In Exodus 23:16 we read, “And the feast of harvest, the firstfruits of thy labours, which thou hast sown in the field: and the feast of ingathering, [which is] in the end of the year, when thou hast gathered in thy labours out of the field.”  Remember that Jesus said in Matthew 13:39 that, “the harvest is in the end of the world.”  The harvest that is equated to “the end of the world” refers to the completion of the final harvest wherein the believers’ souls, the “wheat,” are gathered into God’s barn, while the unsaved, the “tares,” are gathered together and taken out to be burned as we read in Matthew 13:30, “Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.”   At the end of time, the last Trump should herald the end of this creation and the transition to eternity wherein the true “Jews” (Christians from all nations, kindreds, people, and tongues) will celebrate the eternal Jubilee brought about by the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ in the new Heavens and the new Earth in the presence of Almighty God.

 Esther Chapter 10: Eternity In Heaven, Believers Rest in the Peace of Jesus Christ

             The last chapters of Esther prophetically speak of the rejoicing of the believers in Heaven for all eternity.  Just as the Jews in Esther’s day had rest from their enemies, we are reminded in Psalm 37: 38-40, “But the transgressors shall be destroyed together: the end of the wicked shall be cut off. But the salvation of the righteous [is] of the LORD: [he is their] strength in the time of trouble. And the LORD shall help them, and deliver them: he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in him.

In the verse just previous to the above, in Psalms 37:37, we read, “Mark the perfect [man], and behold the upright: for the end of [that] man [is] peace.”  Who is He that is Perfect Who brings us peace?  The “Prince of Peace”, our LORD and Saviour, Jesus Christ.  See Isaiah 9:6, “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God,The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

 In Esther 10:3 we read, “For Mordecai the Jew [was] next unto king Ahasuerus, and great among the Jews, and accepted of the multitude of his brethren, seeking the wealth of his people, and speaking peace to all his seed.”  Isn’t it a fact that Jesus Christ is the “Prince of Peace” (see Isaiah 9:6) and that in John 20:21 we read, “Then said Jesus to them again, Peace [be] unto you: as [my] Father hath sent me, even so send I you.”  It is hard to miss how Mordecai is a “type” of Jesus (as One with God Himself) as we can also read in Psalms 85:8, we learn that, “I will hear what God the LORD will speak: for he will speak peace unto his people, and to his saints: but let them not turn again to folly.”  and in Psalm 122: 7&8 we read where God is referring allegorically to the body of believers (Jerusalem, the city of God), “Peace be within thy walls, [and] prosperity within thy palaces. For my brethren and companions’ sakes, I will now say, Peace [be] within thee.”  In Acts 10:36, “The word which [God] sent unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ: (he is Lord of all:)

All believers are considered the seed of Christ (the true eternal Jews), for we read in Galatians 3:26, “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.“, and in Galatians 3:29, “And if ye [be] Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” (and the promise is the Covenant of God which He made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob).  Please note the beautifully clear parallels between Esther 10:3 and the following verses:

2 Samuel 22:50&51, “Therefore I will give thanks unto thee, O LORD, among the heathen, and I will sing praises unto thy name. [He is] the tower of salvation for his king: and sheweth mercy to his anointed, unto David, and to his seed for evermore.”

Psalms 18:50, “Great deliverance giveth he to his king; and sheweth mercy to his anointed, to David, and to his seed for evermore.

Psalm 22:30&31, “A seed shall serve him; it shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation. They shall come, and shall declare his righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that he hath done [this].”

Psalm 69:36, “The seed also of his servants shall inherit it: and they that love his name shall dwell therein.” 

Psalms 89:29, “His seed also will I make [to endure] for ever, and his throne as the days of heaven.

Psalms 89:36, “His seed shall endure for ever, and his throne as the sun before me.

Psalms 112:2, “His seed shall be mighty upon earth: the generation of the upright shall be blessed.

In Isaiah 53:10, “Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put [him] to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see [his] seed, he shall prolong [his] days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.

The Bible makes it clear that, in God’s eyes, a “Jew” does not necessarily refer to a literal physical descendent of Abraham through Isaac, as we read in Romans 2:28 & 29, “For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither [is that] circumcision, which is outward in the flesh:  But he [is] a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision [is that] of the heart, in the spirit, [and] not in the letter; whose praise [is] not of men, but of God.

Romans 9:1-8 reiterates how God views the eternal spiritual Israel (the believers in the Messiah, Jesus Christ), for Paul was moved by the Holy Spirit to write the following: “I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost,  That I have great heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart.  For I could wish that myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh:  Who are Israelites; to whom [pertaineth] the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law, and the service [of God], and the promises;  Whose [are] the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ [came], who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen.  Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they [are] not all Israel, which are of Israel:  Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, [are they] all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called.  That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these [are] not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed.”   This is also consistent with what we read again in Psalms 22:30, “A seed shall serve him; it shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation.” 

To underscore this idea, God tells us in Ephesians 2:11-22, “Wherefore remember, that ye [being] in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands;  That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world:  But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.  For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition [between us];  Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, [even] the law of commandments [contained] in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, [so] making peace;  And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:  And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh.  For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.  Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner [stone]; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord:  In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.” 

We also know that the devil seeks to destroy those who are believers, those who form the true Church and are the Bride of Christ as we read in Revelation 12:17, “And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.

Finally in 1 Peter 1:23, in referring to the believer, it says that we are born again of the incorruptible seed by the word of God and therefore have eternal life through Jesus Christ… “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth andabideth for ever.

Five Main CHARACTER PROFILES:

1] King Ahasuerus, Who Sat on the Throne of  “His Glorious Kingdom and The Honour of His Excellent Majesty”

Ahasuerus:  According to Strong’s Concordance of Persian origin.  It is said to be more of a title, refering to a king, rather than a specific name.  It is believed to be the same as either Artexerxes or Xerxes (which has been said to mean “Mighty Eye” or “Mighty Man”, but this is also unclear from the Biblical text alone).  No genealogy is provided (Remember that God Himself has no genealogy).  It should be noted that in Daniel 9:1 we read, that “In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of the seed of the Medes, which was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans;”. Darius is one of the kings of Persia who commanded, in Ezra chapter 6, that the Jews rebuild the temple and walls of Jerusalem.  In verse 14 we read, “And the elders of the Jews builded, and they prospered through the prophesying of Haggai the prophet and Zechariah the son of Iddo. And they builded, and finished it, according to the commandment of the God of Israel, and according to the commandment of Cyrus, and Darius, and Artaxerxes king of Persia.”

All Glory and Honor are God’s, He Alone is Excellent

Esther 1:4,  “When he shewed the riches of his glorious kingdom and the honour of his excellent majesty many days, [even] an hundred and fourscore days.

Psalms 8:1, “{To the chief Musician upon Gittith, A Psalm of David.} O LORD our Lord, how excellent [is] thy name in all the earth! who hast set thy glory above the heavens.

Psalm 21:5, “His glory [Is] great in thy salvation: honour and majesty hast thou laid upon him.”

Psalms 145:5, “I will speak of the glorious honour of thy majesty, and of thy wondrous works.

Psalm 145:10-13, “All thy works shall praise thee, O LORD; and thy saints shall bless thee.They shall speak of the glory of thy kingdom, and talk of thy powerTo make known to the sons of men his mighty acts, and the glorious majesty of his kingdom.Thy kingdom [is] an everlasting kingdom, and thy dominion [endureth] throughout all generations.

Psalms 72:19, “And blessed [be] his glorious name for ever: and let the whole earth be filled [with] his glory; Amen, and Amen.

I Chronicles 29:13, “Now therefore, our God, we thank thee, and praise thy glorious name.

Psalms 148:13, “Let them praise the name of the LORD: for his name alone is excellent; his glory [is] above the earth and heaven.

Psalms 150:2, “Praise him for his mighty acts: praise him according to his excellent greatness.

Matthew 24:30, “And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

Jude 25, “To the only wise God our Saviour, [be] glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.”

Revelation 4:11, “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

I Chronicles 16:25-27, “For great [is] the LORD, and greatly to be praised: he also [is] to be feared above all gods.  For all the gods of the people [are] idols: but the LORD made the heavens.  Glory and honour [are] in his presence; strength and gladness [are] in his place.

I Timothy 1:17, “Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, [be] honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Jeremiah 10:10, “But the Lord is the true God, he is the living God, and an everlasting king: at his wrath the earth shall tremble, and the nations shall not be able to abide his indignation.”

 God and His Word are Unchangeable

            Esther 1:19, “If it please the king, let there go a royal commandment from him, and let it be written among the laws of the Persians and the Medes, that it be not altered, That Vashti come no more before king Ahasuerus; and let the king give her royal estate unto another that is better than she.”   (Compare with: Daniel 6:8, “Now, O king, establish the decree, and sign the writing, that it be not changed, according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which altereth not.”  and Daniel 6:15, “Then these men assembled unto the king, and said unto the king, Know, O king, that the law of the Medes and Persians [is], That no decree nor statute which the king establisheth may be changed.“)

Malachi 3:6, “For I [am] the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.

Numbers 23:19, “God [is] not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do [it]? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?

I Samuel 15:29, “And also the Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent: for he [is] not a man, that he should repent.

Jeremiah 4:28, “For this shall the earth mourn, and the heavens above be black: because I have spoken [it], I have purposed [it], and will not repent, neither will I turn back from it.

God’s Word (the Gospel of Jesus Christ) is “Published” Throughout All His Empire

Esther 1:20, “And when the king’s decree which he shall make shall be published throughout all his empire, (for it is great,) all the wives shall give to their husbands honour, both to great and small.

Psalms 68:11, “The Lord gave the word: great [was] the company of those that published [it].

Mark 13:10, “And the gospel must first be published among all nations.

Mark 16:15, “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

Deuteronomy 31:30, “And Moses spake in the ears of all the congregation of Israel the words of this song, until they were ended.  Give ear, O ye heavens, and I will speak; and hear, O earth, the words of my mouth.  My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distil as the dew, as the small rain upon the tender herb, and as the showers upon the grass:  Because I will publish the name of the LORD: ascribe ye greatness unto our God.  [He is] the Rock, his work [is] perfect: for all his ways [are] judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right [is] he.

And to emphasize that the Kingdom of God is from all nations, Revelation 7:9&10, “After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and beforethe Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.”

 The Seven Wise Men in Shushan the Palace

        In Esther 1:13&14 we read, “Then the king said to the wise men, which knew the times, (for so [was] the king’s manner toward all that knew law and judgment:  And the next unto him [was] Carshena, Shethar, Admatha, Tarshish, Meres, Marsena, [and] Memucan, the seven princes of Persia and Media, which saw the king’s face, [and] which sat the first in the kingdom;)”  Who do these seven wise men represent who know both times, law, and judgment?  God gives us the answer in Revelation 4:5, “And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices: and [there were] seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.

Please note the similarity to what we find in Exodus 19:16 where we read, “And it came to pass on the third day in the morning, that there were thunders and lightnings, and a thick cloud upon the mount, and the voice of the trumpet exceeding loud; so that all the people that [was] in the camp trembled.  And Moses brought forth the people out of the camp to meet with God; and they stood at the nether part of the mount.  And mount Sinai was altogether on a smoke, because the LORD descended upon it in fire: and the smoke thereof ascended as the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mount quaked greatly.”  and in Exodus 34:2, “And be ready in the morning, and come up in the morning unto mount Sinai, and present thyself there to me in the top of the mount.  Remember what God told Moses when Moses was to go up to Mount Sinai to visit with God?  In Exodus 33:20 we read, “And he (God) said, Thou canst not see my face: for there shall no man see me, and live“.  Doesn’t it appear that Mount Sinai was used of God to typify His throne?  Furthermore, by typifying God’s throne, both Mount Sinai in Exodus (and Shushan the palace in Esther 1:2, “[That] in those days, when the king Ahasuerus sat on the throne of his kingdom, which [was] in Shushan the palace,“) must therefore represent Heaven.  We can say this because of what we read in Isaiah 66:1 (and Acts 7:49), “Thus saith the LORD, The heaven [is] my throne, and the earth [is] my footstool: where [is] the house that ye build unto me? and where [is] the place of my rest?“.  Finally, isn’t it also reasonable to conclude that the seven wise men in the book of Esther could therefore be representative of the “seven Spirits of God” that are always with Him and see His face and Who know the times, law, and judgment (which relates to the “fire”)?

 2] Mordecai, a Jew, and an Elder Who Sat in the Gate

           Esther 2:5, “[Now] in Shushan the palace there was a certain Jew, whose name [was] Mordecai, the son of Jair, the son of Shimei, the son of Kish, a Benjamite;  Who had been carried away from Jerusalem with the captivity which had been carried away with Jeconiah king of Judah, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had carried away.

Although the meaning of “Mordecai” is not clear, but it is said to mean “little man”, which is interesting because Mordecai’s warning that saved the kingdom was not remembered.  Doesn’t this sound somewhat similar to what we read in Ecclesiastes 9:13-17, “This wisdom have I seen also under the sun, and it seemed great unto me: [There was] a little city, and few men within it; and there came a great king against it, and besieged it, and built great bulwarks against it: Now there was found in it a poor wise man, and he by his wisdom delivered the city; yet no man remembered that same poor man.Then said I, Wisdom [is] better than strength: nevertheless the poor man’s wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard. The words of wise [men are] heard in quiet more than the cry of him that ruleth among fools.

We do know that as a Benjaminite, Mordecai was of the tribe of Benjamin (the only full brother of Joseph), whose name means “son of my right hand.”  When Jacob gave a blessing to his sons this is how he blessed Benjamin: Deuteronomy 33:12, “[And] of Benjamin he said, The beloved of the LORD shall dwell in safety by him; [and the LORD] shall cover him all the day long, and he shall dwell between his shoulders.”  Jair means “He Enlightens“: “Shimei*” means “renowned” or “famous“: and “Kish” means “power.” We know that a man named Kish was also the father of the first king of Israel, King Saul.  1 Samuel 9:1&2, “Now there was a man of Benjamin, whose name was Kish, the son of Abiel, the son of Zeror, the son of Bechorath, the son of Aphiah, a Benjamite, a mighty man of power. And he had a son, whose name was Saul, a choice young man, and a goodly: and there was not among the children of Israel a goodlier person than he: from his shoulders and upward he was higher than any of the people.”  The only progeny of King Saul to have been recorded as not having been killed off was Mephibosheth (King Saul’s grandson through Jonathan) (please see: https://bereansearching.com/2017/01/17/mephibosheth-and-a-covenant-of-grace/ ).  

It should also be noted that the genealogy provides some additional information that could be pertinent to any study of Mordecai, so let’s look a bit closer.  The genealogy makes it clear that Mordecai was at least indirectly related (a kinsman) to King Saul.  As mentioned above, a man named Kish was the father of King Saul, who was also a Benjaminite (similarly, so was the Saul in the New Testament who later became known as Paul).  While King Saul was an outwardly handsome man, of great stature, and a king after the people’s heart, he was faithless and not a king after God’s own heart as was King David.  Nonetheless, God did show compassion and grace toward a remnant of that line by the hand of King David.  This was true for Mephibosheth (a grandson of Saul through Jonathan) who we read about in II Samuel 9:13, “So Mephibosheth dwelt in Jerusalem: for he did eat continually at the king’s table; and was lame on both his feet.” 

While it remains unclear if Mordecai (and hence also Esther) are descended from Kish apart from King Saul, or through him via Mephibosheth.  Either would seem to be possible, but if descended from Kish through Saul/Jonathan/Mephibosheth, then Mordecai and Esther could also be viewed as having a “royal lineage” through the failed house of Saul (and only due to the promised covenant between David (a type of Jesus Christ) and Jonathan (whom David loved). This would then be particularly noteworthy when we consider that King Saul disobeyed God’s command to utterly destroy the Amalekites, which included “Agag the king of the Amalekites1 Samuel 15:8.

(NOTE: Ironically, according to 2 Samuel 1:13, it was was none other than “the son of a stranger, an Amalekite” who looted King Saul’s crown and who evidently falsely claimed to David that he had dealt the final lethal blow to King Saul after King Saul had been wounded in battle by Philistine archers (even though the wounded King Saul is recorded in two places in the Bible as having taken his own life by falling on his sword, see both 1 Samuel 31:1-6 and 1Chronicles 10:4). The full account regarding that Amalekite begins in 2 Samuel 1:1 where we read that, “Now it came to pass after the death of Saul, when David was returned from the slaughter of the Amalekites, and David had abode two days in Ziklag;” and ends with David putting that Amalekite to death 2 Samuel 1:16, “And David said unto him, Thy blood [be] upon thy head; for thy mouth hath testified against thee, saying, I have slain the LORD’S anointed.” The same account is also brought up later by King David in 2 Samuel 4:10, “When one told me, saying, Behold, Saul is dead, thinking to have brought good tidings, I took hold of him, and slew him in Ziklag, who [thought] that I would have given him a reward for his tidings:)

The following is the discourse between King Saul and Samuel, who, as a prophet of God, condemned King Saul for that disobedience. In 1 Samuel 15:20-23, we read, “And Saul said unto Samuel, Yea, I have obeyed the voice of the LORD, and have gone the way which the LORD sent me, and have brought Agag the king of Amalek, and have utterly destroyed the Amalekites. But the people took of the spoil, sheep and oxen, the chief of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice unto the LORD thy God in Gilgal. And Samuel said, Hath the LORD [as great] delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey [is] better than sacrifice, [and] to hearken than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from [being] king.”  It is therefore most interesting that had King Saul been obedient to God’s command, the book of Esther might not have needed to be written, because the adversary, Haman, who sought to destroy Mordecai and all of his people (the Jews), was none other than a descendent of King Agag (who Samuel hewed in pieces in 1 Samuel 15:33)! (but, yes, of course it was all foreordained to play out and be recorded exactly as it occurred in Esther).  Moreover, in the book of Esther, the descendants/relatives of King Saul thus fulfilled the command of God, which King Saul had failed to do, in putting out the name of Amalek forever, as typified by the hanging of Haman and his ten sons as we read in Exodus 17:14-16, “And the LORD said unto Moses, Write this [for] a memorial in a book, and rehearse [it] in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven. And Moses built an altar, and called the name of it Jehovah-nissi: For he said, Because the LORD hath sworn [that] the LORD [will have] war with Amalek from generation to generation.” 

As for Jair, we read of a man named Jair in Judges 10:3-5, who was a judge in Israel; and in 1 Chronicles 20:5 of another son of a man named Jair (named Elhanan, which means “God is a gracious giver”) who slew the brother of the giant Goliath.  The genealogical namesakes remind us that Mordecai (like Saul who became Paul) was of a line that should have been cut-off by God, but nonetheless was instead a recipient of God’s grace.

We know that Mordecai was an elder in the city because he sat in the king’s gate.  Further, despite having saved the life of the king, he and his good deed were soon forgotten.  This is similar to the account in Ecclesiastes 9:14&15, “[There was] a little city, and few men within it; and there came a great king against it, and besieged it, and built great bulwarks against it:  Now there was found in it a poor wise man, and he by his wisdom delivered the city; yet no man remembered that same poor man.”  Isn’t this similar to the wisdom of Jesus Christ who became poor that the believer’s might become rich in Him.  Didn’t Jesus save His beloved Church, the “city” of the New Jerusalem?  Nonetheless, following the abasement Mordecai suffered by the putting on sackcloth and sitting in ashes, eventually he was exalted to the right hand of the king.  Isn’t this similar to what we read of Jesus?

Hebrews 2:9, “But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.

2 Peter 1:17, “For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

Also in Revelation 4:11, “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

In Psalm 145 we read, “(David’s Psalm of praise.) I will extol thee, my God, O king; and I will bless thy name for ever and ever. Every day will I bless thee; and I will praise thy name for ever and ever. Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised; and his greatness is unsearchable. One generation shall praise thy works to another, and shall declare thy mighty acts. I will speak of the glorious honour of thy majesty, and of thy wondrous works.

Revelation 5:11-13, “And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands; Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.  And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, [be] unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.

Revelation 7:12, “Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, [be] unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.

Revelation 19:1, “And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God:

Mordecai’s Attributes:

Humility

Mordecai was a humble man who did not boast of his having saved the King.

Wisdom

Mordecai always took the wise and appropriate actions towards God and man.

Concern for Others

Mordecai showed compassion to Esther by raising her up as his own daughter and continuing to be concerned about her welfare and that of her (and his) people.

A Man to Whom Glory and Honor Was Ultimately Given

In reviewing the attributes of Mordecai and his portrayal relationship to Jesus in overturning the forces of darkness and receiving honor and glory in ultimate victory we can look to Psalm 21:1-13, “{To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.} The king shall joy in thy strength, O LORD; and in thy salvation how greatly shall he rejoice!  Thou hast given him his heart’s desire, and hast not withholden the request of his lips. Selah.  For thou preventest him with the blessings of goodness: thou settest a crown of pure gold on his head.  He asked life of thee, [and] thou gavest [it] him, [even] length of days for ever and ever.  His glory [is] great in thy salvation: honour and majesty hast thou laid upon him.  For thou hast made him most blessed for ever: thou hast made him exceeding glad with thy countenance.  For the king trusteth in the LORD, and through the mercy of the most High he shall not be moved.  Thine hand shall find out all thine enemies: thy right hand shall find out those that hate theeThou shalt make them as a fiery oven in the time of thine anger: the LORD shall swallow them up in his wrath, and the fire shall devour them.  Their fruit shalt thou destroy from the earth, and their seed from among the children of menFor they intended evil against thee: they imagined a mischievous device, [which] they are not able [to perform].  Therefore shalt thou make them turn their back, [when] thou shalt make ready [thine arrows] upon thy strings against the face of them.  Be thou exalted, LORD, in thine own strength: [so] will we sing and praise thy power.

(Note that in both Ezra 2:2 and Nehemiah 7:7 we can read of a man named Mordecai, clearly considered a  senior person at the time, who was taken into captivity by the King of Babylon and later returned after the captivity.  The dates of the various Medo-Persian kings is not entirely clear, but there is at least the possibility that this could be the same Mordecai who, with Esther, has been relocated first to Persia after Nebuchadnezzar and Babylon was conquered.)

 3] Esther: A Portrait of the Bride of Jesus Christ

Esther 2:7, “And he brought up Hadassah, that [is], Esther, his uncle’s daughter: for she had neither father nor mother, and the maid [was] fair and beautiful; whom Mordecai, when her father and mother were dead, took for his own daughter.

Esther 2:15, “Now when the turn of Esther, the daughter of Abihail the uncle of Mordecai, who had taken her for his daughter, was come to go in unto the king, she required nothing but what Hegai the king’s chamberlain, the keeper of the women, appointed. And Esther obtained favour in the sight of all them that looked upon her.

Esther: Her Persian name, of uncertain meaning or derivation.  Some commentaries claim that the name means “a star,” which, if true, would be consistent with the theme that Esther represents the believers over whom the devil wants to reign as we read in Isaiah 14:13.  Esther’s Hebrew name “Hadassah”, means “myrtle wood.”  Because this name is of Hebrew origin it is easier to find correspondence in other parts of the Bible.  When we search the scriptures, we find the following verses in which hadassah (myrtle) is also used:

Nehemiah 8:15, “And that they should publish and proclaim in all their cities, and in Jerusalem, saying, Go forth unto the mount, and fetch olive branches, and pine branches, and myrtle branches, and palm branches, and branches of thick trees, to make booths, as [it is] written.

Isaiah 41:19, “I will plant in the wilderness the cedar, the shittah tree, and the myrtle, and the oil tree; I will set in the desert the fir tree, [and] the pine, and the box tree together:

A quick aside…In Isaiah 61:3, we read where God says, immediately following the most significant Messianic verses in Isaiah 61:1 & Isaiah 61:2 (The same words proclaimed by Jesus in Luke 4:18 and John 1:32, John 3:34) addressing Jesus’s salvation gospel message to the otherwise hopeless of the world (those who would become His Church) ” ...that they might called the trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.”

Isaiah 55:13, “Instead of the thorn shall come up the fir tree, and instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree: and it shall be to the LORD for a name, for an everlasting sign [that] shall not be cut off.

Zechariah 1:8-11, “I saw by night, and behold a man riding upon a red horse, and he stood among the myrtle trees that [were] in the bottom; and behind him [were there] red horses, speckled, and white.  Then said I, O my lord, what [are] these? And the angel that talked with me said unto me, I will shew thee what these [be].  And the man that stood among the myrtle trees answered and said, These [are they] whom the LORD hath sent to walk to and fro through the earth.  And they answered the angel of the LORD that stood among the myrtle trees, and said, We have walked to and fro through the earth, and, behold, all the earth sitteth still, and is at rest.

It can be concluded from the above that the myrtle tree is a representation of the believers, i.e., in the case of Isaiah 41:19, where in the wilderness (i.e., the world) thorns (unsaved people) flourish, God raises up myrtle trees (the believers).  Notice how in Zechariah 1:11, the “angel” (actually “messenger”) of the LORD stood among the myrtle trees.  Does not God stand among the believers?  Matthew 18:20, “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”

Esther’s Attributes:

Esther was a “maid” (verse 2:7)…II Kings 5:2-4, “And the Syrians had gone out by companies, and had brought away captive out of the land of Israel a little maid; and she waited on Naaman’s wife.  And she said unto her mistress, Would God my lord [were] with the prophet that [is] in Samaria! for he would recover him of his leprosy.  And [one] went in, and told his lord, saying, Thus and thus said the maid that [is] of the land of Israel.”  NOTE; God used the little “maid” to be a witness of His power in Syria.

Esther was “fair” (verse 2:7)…Job 42:15, “And in all the land were no women found [so] fair as the daughters of Job: and their father gave them inheritance among their brethren.”  Song of Solomon 2:10, “My beloved spake, and said unto me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away.

Song of Solomon 4:7, “Thou [art] all fair, my love; [there is] no spot in thee.

Song of Solomon 6:10, “ Who [is] she [that] looketh forth as the morning, fair as the moon, clear as the sun, [and] terrible as [an army] with banners?

Esther was “beautiful” (lit. of good appearance or good countenance) (verse 2:7)…Song of Solomon 6:4, “Thou [art] beautiful, O my love, as Tirzah, comely as Jerusalem, terrible as [an army] with banners.” and Isaiah 52:1, “Awake, awake; put on thy strength, O Zion; put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city: for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean.”  NOTE: God declares his bride to be the new Jerusalem in Revelation 21:2, “And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

Isaiah 52:7,  “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!

Esther was a “virgin” (verses 2:3 with 2:8)…Isaiah 62:5, “For [as] a young man marrieth a virgin, [so] shall thy sons marry thee: and [as] the bridegroom rejoiceth over the bride, [so] shall thy God rejoice over thee.”  Jeremiah 31:4, “Again I will build thee, and thou shalt be built, O virgin of Israel: thou shalt again be adorned with thy tabrets, and shalt go forth in the dances of them that make merry.

I Corinthians 7:28, “But and if thou marry, thou hast not sinned; and if a virgin marry, she hath not sinned. Nevertheless such shall have trouble in the flesh: but I spare you.”

II Corinthians 11:2, “For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present [you as] a chaste virgin to Christ.

Esther was an “orphan.” (Esther 2:7)… Lamentations 5:3, “We are orphans and fatherless, our mothers [are] as widows.

As and orphan, Esther was also “fatherless”…Deuteronomy 10:18, “He doth execute the judgment of the fatherless and widow, and loveth the stranger, in giving him food and raiment.

Job 29:12, “Because I delivered the poor that cried, and the fatherless, and [him that had] none to help him.

Psalms 68:5, “A father of the fatherless, and a judge of the widows, [is] God in his holy habitation.

Jeremiah 49:11, “Leave thy fatherless children, I will preserve [them] alive; and let thy widows trust in me.

James 1:27, “ Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, [and] to keep himself unspotted from the world.

Esther was “loved.”  (Esther 2:17)… Deuteronomy 33:2&3, “And he said, The LORD came from Sinai, and rose up from Seir unto them; he shined forth from mount Paran, and he came with ten thousands of saints: from his right hand [went] a fiery law for them.  Yea, he loved the people; all his saints [are] in thy hand: and they sat down at thy feet; [every one] shall receive of thy words.

I Kings 10:9, “Blessed be the LORD thy God, which delighted in thee, to set thee on the throne of Israel: because the LORD loved Israel for ever, therefore made he thee king, to do judgment and justice.

John 3:16,  “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”  We know that God loves those whom He sacrificed His Son to save.

John 13:23, “Now there was leaning on Jesus’ bosom one of his disciples, whom Jesus loved.”  Jesus loved John who typified all true believers.

John 13:34, “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.

John 14:21, “He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.”  Jesus reveals (manifests) Himself to those whom He loves.

John 15:9, “As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love.

II Thessalonians 2:16, “Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given [us] everlasting consolation and good hope through

grace, Comfort your hearts, and stablish you in every good word and work.

Esther found “grace.” (Esther 2:17)

Genesis 6:8, “But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.

Jeremiah 31:2, “Thus saith the LORD, The people [which were] left of the sword found grace in the wilderness; [even] Israel, when I went to cause him to rest.

Acts 4:33, “And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.

Acts 15:11, “But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they.

Acts 20:32, “And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified.

Ephesians 2:8, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: [it is] the gift of God:

Esther found “favor.”  (Esther 2:17)…Genesis 39:21, “But the LORD was with Joseph, and shewed him mercy, and gave him favour in the sight of the keeper of the prison.

Psalms 5:12, “For thou, LORD, wilt bless the righteous; with favour wilt thou compass him as [with] a shield.

Psalms 30:5, “For his anger [endureth but] a moment; in his favour [is] life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy [cometh] in the morning.

Psalms 30:7, “LORD, by thy favour thou hast made my mountain to stand strong: thou didst hide thy face, [and] I was troubled.

Psalms 89:17, “For thou [art] the glory of their strength: and in thy favour our horn shall be exalted.

Psalms 119:58, “I entreated thy favour with [my] whole heart: be merciful unto me according to thy word.

Proverbs 3:4, “So shalt thou find favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man.

Proverbs 8:35, “For whoso findeth me findeth life, and shall obtain favour of the LORD.

Proverbs 12:2, “A good [man] obtaineth favour of the LORD: but a man of wicked devices will he condemn.

Isaiah 60:10, “And the sons of strangers shall build up thy walls, and their kings shall minister unto thee: for in my wrath I smote thee, but in my favour have I had mercy on thee.

Luke 1:30, “And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God.

Acts 7:10, “And delivered him out of all his afflictions, and gave him favour and wisdom in the sight of Pharaoh king of Egypt; and he made him governor over Egypt and all his house.

Acts 7:46, “Who found favour before God, and desired to find a tabernacle for the God of Jacob.

Esther was made a “Queen.”  (Esther 2:17)…I Kings 10:13, “And king Solomon gave unto the queen of Sheba all her desire, whatsoever she asked, beside [that] which Solomon gave her of his royal bounty. So she turned and went to her own country, she and her servants.

II Chronicles 9:1-3, “And when the queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon, she came to prove Solomon with hard questions at Jerusalem, with a very great company, and camels that bare spices, and gold in abundance, and precious stones: and when she was come to Solomon, she communed with him of all that was in her heart.  And Solomon told her all her questions: and there was nothing hid from Solomon which he told her not.  And when the queen of Sheba had seen the wisdom of Solomon, and the house that he had built,.

Matthew 12:42, “The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for she came from the uttermost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon [is] here.

Esther wore a “crown” (Esther 2:17)…Genesis 49:26, “The blessings of thy father have prevailed above the blessings of my progenitors unto the utmost bound of the everlasting hills: they shall be on the head of Joseph, and on the crown of the head of him that was separate from his brethren.

Leviticus 21:12, “Neither shall he go out of the sanctuary, nor profane the sanctuary of his God; for the crown of the anointing oil of his God [is] upon him: I [am] the LORD.

Proverbs 4:9, “She shall give to thine head an ornament of grace: a crown of glory shall she deliver to thee.

Isaiah 28:5, “ In that day shall the LORD of hosts be for a crown of glory, and for a diadem of beauty, unto the residue of his people,

Revelation 2:10, “Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast [some] of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.

II Timothy 4:8, “Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.

4] Hegai (and Hatach): Types of the Holy Ghost/Holy Spirit

Hegai (Hege): In Esther chapter 2 we read of the King’s chamberlain, the keeper of the women, Hegai (who was in all likelihood a eunuch, see below).  We are told that Esther obtained kindness of him, and later received a total of twelve months of purification, six months with the oil of myrrh and six months with sweet odors.  It would not be inconsistent to conclude that in this prophetic parable, Hegai is a type of the Holy Spirit that anoints and purifies (sanctifies) the believers, and Who makes it possible for the believers to come into the presence of The Everlasting Almighty King, God Himself

Please note how in Esther 2:15 we are told, “Now when the turn of Esther, the daughter of Abihail (which in the Hebrew means “the father of power, might, strength, and virtue,” i.e. another portrait of God the Father) the uncle of Mordecai, who had taken her for his daughter, was come to go in unto the king, she required nothing but what Hegai the king’s chamberlain, the keeper of the women, appointed. And Esther obtained favour in the sight of all them that looked upon her.”  Again we can see the connection with the Holy Spirit, because the believers who have been sanctified by the anointing and indwelling of the Holy Spirit require “nothing but” that which the Holy Spirit provides in order to come into the presence of the Everlasting King…The Lord God Almighty!  

It is also interesting that the name Hegai (also spelled once as Hege in the Esther account) is thought to mean in the Persian, fittingly, “eunuch” https://www.blueletterbible.org/lexicon/h1896/kjv/wlc/0-1/.  However, some translators have concluded that Hegai (Hege) can also be interpreted as “meditation; word; groaning; separationhttp://www.kingjamesbibledictionary.com/Dictionary/Hegai.  If indeed this is the case, we can certainly see parallels between Hegai and the Holy Spirit given what we find in Romans 8:26, “Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.” And we also know that The Holy Spirit witnesses to our spirit: Romans 8:16, “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:“  

And isn’t interesting that they “myrrh” is applied for the first half of the year, and the sweet odors the second half of the year.  Is it not interesting that the Old Testament points to the atoning sacrifice of Jesus, and that myrrh is used to prepare a dead body for burial as we read in John 19:38-40, where Joseph of Arimathaea and Nicodemus prepared the body of Jesus with “myrrh and aloes” before placing Him in the tomb, and “wound it in linen clothes with the spices, as the manner of the Jews is to bury.”  And when Asa, the King of Judah died, we read in 2 Chronicles 16:14 that, “they buried him in his own sepulchres, which he had made for himself in the city of David, and laid him in the bed which was filled with sweet odours and divers kinds [of spices] prepared by the apothecaries’ art: and they made a very great burning for him.” But is it not also interesting that in the New Testament we read in Revelation 8:3-4, that, “And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. And the smoke of the incense, [which came] with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel’s hand.

Hatach: We are first introduced to Hatach in Esther Chapter 4.  There we see him as the vehicle of communication between Esther and Mordecai in verses 5&6 and between Mordecai and Esther in verses 9&10. It is also interesting to note that Hatach (הֲתָךְ hăṯāḵ reportedly means “Verily” (hence “Truth“) https://www.blueletterbible.org/lexicon/h2047/kjv/wlc/0-1/  or possibly also “Gifthttps://www.biblegateway.com/resources/all-men-bible/Hatach-Hathach), and is also a proper masculine noun. Both attributes are clearly used in the Bible as representations of the Holy Ghost/Holy Spirit. See for example: for “Truth”; John 14:17, John 15:26, John 16:13 and for “Gift”; Act 2:38, Act 10:45, Hebrews 6:4. It was through him that Esther communed with Mordecai “to know what it [was], and why it [was]” and thereby learned the details of Haman’s plot against the Jews. Hatach was serving in the role of an intercessor!

If we therefore consider that, if Esther represents the eternal Church (the believers) and Mordecai is an allegorical prefigurement of the Lord Jesus Christ, then it would seem quite reasonable to view Hatach, like Hegai earlier, as another “Type” for God, representing the Holy Ghost/Holy Spirit.  Most particularly so, because Jesus said, in John 16:13, “Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.” The Holy Spirit communicates to us The Truth, and we know that Jesus is the Truth (John 14:6). We also know that Salvation is a Gift, for in Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” and Hebrews 6:4 says, “For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost,…” and in John 14:16-18, “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; [Even] the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in youI will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.”

We can now more clearly see that as both Hegai and Hatach thus had an important role in ensuring the deliverance of the Jews through preparation and intercession, just as the Holy Spirit Works in the preparation, sanctification, and intercession for the believers.

5] Haman as an Agagite Was Also an Amalekite: a Vessel “Unto Dishonour”

 Esther 3:1, “After these things did king Ahasuerus promote Haman the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, and advanced him, and set his seat above all the princes that [were] with him.

Esther 7:6, “And Esther said, The adversary and enemy [is] this wicked Haman. Then Haman was afraid before the king and the queen.“*

* The specific words “adversary“, “enemy“, and “wicked” (when taken together) are used pointedly in the Bible to describe the devil, Satan (i.e, 1 Peter 5:8, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:; Matthew 13:39, “The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels.“; and, Matthew 13:38, “The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked [one];

Haman:  According to Strong’s Concordance: of foreign derivation, however is very close to Hebrew word meaning “rage,” “tumult,” “destroy,” or “vex.” Another translation claims the name means “Magnificent” (which is not inconsistent with what we read of the devil in Isaiah 14:12…”How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!)

Hammedatha:  “Threshing”?   Possibly pertains to the last judgment, or threshing when the evil are cast into hell

Agagite:  “Flame”?  Again possibly pertaining to those things that are taken out and burned by fire.

Haman’s Genealogy: Haman was a direct descendent of King Agag, hence Amalek, hence Esau.  Let’s see what God has to say about each of these individuals that make up the ancestry of Haman:

Esau:

Malachi 1:2&3, “I have loved you, saith the LORD. Yet ye say, Wherein hast thou loved us? [Was] not Esau Jacob’s brother? saith the LORD: yet I loved Jacob,  And I hated Esau, and laid his mountains and his heritage waste for the dragons of the wilderness.

In Obadiah 8-10, “Shall I not in that day, saith the LORD, even destroy the wise [men] out of Edom, and understanding out of the mount of EsauAnd thy mighty [men], O Teman, shall be dismayed, to the end that every one of the mount of Esau may be cut off by slaughter. For [thy] violence against thy brother Jacob shame shall cover thee, and thou shalt be cut off for ever.

Romans 9:13, “As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.

Amalek:

Genesis 36:12, “And Timna was concubine to Eliphaz Esau’s son; and she bare to Eliphaz Amalek: these [were] the sons of Adah Esau‘s wife.

We also can find that, in Exodus 17:8-13,  Joshua fought against Amalek under the inspiration of Moses, who arms were supported by Aaron and Hur, and that he slew them with the sword. Amalek was evidently not completely destroyed, however, and at the end of this war Moses was ordered to write in a document, as a reminder, that the Lord would one day blot out the memory of Amalek from under the heaven as we read in Exodus 17:14-17, “And the LORD said unto Moses, Write this [for] a memorial in a book, and rehearse [it] in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven.  And Moses built an altar, and called the name of it Jehovah-nissi:  For he said, Because the LORD hath sworn [that] the LORD [will have] war with Amalek from generation to generation.

God reiterates His command in Deuteronomy 25:17-19, “Remember what Amalek did unto thee by the way, when ye were come forth out of Egypt;  How he met thee by the way, and smote the hindmost of thee, [even] all [that were] feeble behind thee, when thou [wast] faint and weary; and he feared not God.  Therefore it shall be, when the LORD thy God hath given thee rest from all thine enemies round about, in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee [for] an inheritance to possess it, [that] thou shalt blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven; thou shalt not forget [it].”  

In that context it should be remembered that it was the Edomites who would not let the Israelites pass and threatened to kill them if they even set foot inside of Edom.  See Numbers 20:14-21.  And remember that “Esau is Edom” as we read four times in Genesis 36 (verses 1, 8, 19, 43). 

Amalek was the first enemy that Israel encountered after the crossing of the Red Sea as we read in I Samuel 15:2&3, “Thus saith the LORD of hosts, I remember [that] which Amalek did to Israel, how he laid [wait] for him in the way, when he came up from Egypt.  Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.

I Samuel 15:18, “And the LORD sent thee on a journey, and said, Go and utterly destroy the sinners the Amalekites, and fight against them until they be consumed.

King Agag:

I Samuel 15:32&33,  “Then said Samuel, Bring ye hither to me Agag the king of the Amalekites. And Agag came unto him delicately. And Agag said, Surely the bitterness of death is past.  And Samuel said, As thy sword hath made women childless, so shall thy mother be childless among women. And Samuel hewed Agag in pieces before the LORD in Gilgal.

It is also interesting to note that in the parable of Balaam versus Israel (where Balak, the king of Moab, sought to hire Balaam to curse Israel), God made Balaam prophesy that Israel (and its ultimate King, Jesus Christ) would be exalted above king Agag as we read Numbers 24:7, “He shall pour the water out of his buckets, and his seed [shall be] in many waters, and his king shall be higher than Agag, and his kingdom shall be exalted.”  However, Balaam was forced by God to curse the line of Amalek as we read in Numbers 24:20, “ And when he looked on Amalek, he took up his parable, and said, Amalek [was] the first of the nations (the first of the  nations to confront returning Israel); but his latter end [shall be] that he perish for ever.(NOTE: There are several references to the slaying of the Amalkites with some at times escaping. It is not clear how Haman’s family escaped, but obviously they did.  In 1 Samuel 30:17 we find, “And David smote them from the twilight even unto the evening of the next day: and there escaped not a man of them, save four hundred young men, which rode upon camels, and fled. And David recovered all that the Amalekites had carried away: and David rescued his two wives.” and in  1 Chronicles 4:43, “And they smote the rest of the Amalekites that were escaped, and dwelt there unto this day.“)

(Another NOTE: The Bible, in Joshua 13:22, also tells us that this same Balaam (the son of Beor, “of Pethor of Mesopotamia”, according to Deuteronomy  23:4) was a “soothsayer” (diviner) and that Balaam was among those that Israel subsequently slew with the sword (also in Numbers 31:8).  According to the Bible, Balaam was deserving of death because he gave counsel to Balak to cause Israel to stumble, as we read in Numbers 31:16, “to commit trespass against the Lord in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the Lord.” and in Revelation 2:14,”But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac (Balak) to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication.”  Moreover in Micah 5:12 God specifically stated, “And I will cut off witchcrafts out of thine hand; and thou shalt have no more soothsayers:”)

Haman, like Satan, is the “Accuser”

Note the similarity between the accusation by Haman against the Jews in Esther 3:8&9 (“And Haman said unto king Ahasuerus, There is a certain people scattered abroad and dispersed among the people in all the provinces of thy kingdom; and their laws are diverse from all people; neither keep they the king’s laws: therefore it is not for the king’s profit to suffer them. If it please the king, let it be written that they may be destroyed: and I will pay ten thousand talents of silver to the hands of those that have the charge of the business, to bring it into the king’s treasuries.“) with what we find in Ezra 4:4-6, “Then the people of the land weakened the hands of the people of Judah, and troubled them in building,  And hired counsellors against them, to frustrate their purpose, all the days of Cyrus king of Persia, even until the reign of Darius king of Persia.  And in the reign of Ahasuerus, in the beginning of his reign, wrote they [unto him] an accusation against the inhabitants of Judah and Jerusalem.”  Furthermore, we also know according to Revelation 12:10, that Satan (described in the immediately preceding verse as, “…the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.“) is the accuser of the brethren before God, “And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. 

And let us consider the end of all those, like Haman, who are deemed to be enemies and wicked as we had read in Esther 7:6, “And Esther said, The adversary and enemy [is] this wicked Haman…” 

Psalm 37:20, “But the wicked shall perish, and the enemies of the LORD [shall] be as the fat of lambs: they shall consume; into smoke shall they consume away.

Psalm 37:28, “For the LORD loveth judgment, and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever: but the seed of the wicked shall be cut off.

Psalm 9:17, “The wicked shall be turned into hell, [and] all the nations that forget God.”

Then there is this analysis that was recently found on the internet at http://www.gotquestions.org/Book-of-Esther.html under “Foreshadowings” …very well said…
“Just as Haman plotted against the Jews in order to destroy them, so has Satan has set himself against Christ and God’s people. Just as Haman is defeated on the gallows he built for Mordecai, so does Christ use the very weapon that his enemy devised to destroy Him and His spiritual seed. For the cross, by which Satan planned to destroy the Messiah, was the very means through which Christ “Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross; [And] having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.” (Colossians 2:14-15). Just as Haman was hanged on the gallows he built for Mordecai, so the devil was crushed by the cross he erected to destroy Christ.”

APPENDIX: Questions and Answers

Having provided this study and the fundamentals through which it was derived, let’s look at a few questions that have been brought to this author’s attention regarding the preceding commentary.  First, it has been asked, “What are the implications of a pagan, drunken, self-centered, and rash king (who seeks and is bound by the counsel of his advisors) being likened to God?”

Can A Pagan King Be Likened To God?

             Is it really possible that a “pagan” king can be likened to God?  If we turn to Genesis 41:39-44, we can see a similar account where another pagan king, a pharaoh of Egypt, elevated Joseph (who, like Mordecai, is a classic allegorical pre-figurement of Jesus Christ) to his right hand.  Notice the language, “And Pharaoh took off his ring from his hand, and put it upon Joseph’s hand, and arrayed him in vestures of fine linen, and put a gold chain about his neck;  And he made him to ride in the second chariot which he had; and they cried before him, Bow the knee: and he made him [ruler] over all the land of Egypt.”  Isn’t it Jesus Christ to whom every knee will eventually bow? (see Philippians 2:10)  And doesn’t the fine linen pertain to the righteousness of Christ which will eventually also be imputed to the believers? (See Rev. 18:19).  What about kings Cyrus and Darius of Persia when they each gave a commandment to rebuild the temple? (see Ezra 1:1-2, Ezra 6:12)  (Also note that in Ezra 6:14, Artaxerxes (Ahasuerus) is also listed with Cyrus and Darius, right after the God of Israel as having given that commandment.)  In Daniel 6:25, we read, “Then king Darius wrote unto all people, nations, and languages, that dwell in all the earth; Peace be multiplied unto you.”  Who is it that has the power to declare to all people, nations and languages, that dwell in all the earth, “Peace be unto you?”  Only God Himself! (John 20:19, John 20:21, John 20:26, and Revelation 1:4)  So then, you be the judge, can a pagan king be likened to God?

Drunken with Wine?

             Regarding the issue of “drunkenness”, there is no place in the book of Esther where there is an explicit reference to drunkenness on the part of the king Ahasuerus.  What was recorded in Esther 1:10 was only, “When the heart of the king was merry with wine.”  We should take a moment to review what is a parable…A parable is an earthly story with a heavenly or spiritual meaning.  While we may speculate that in the historical context this means drunkenness, we have to be careful to see what God means spiritually by the use of such language.  If it can only mean drunkenness, then we would also have to accuse God of being a drunkard, because in Judges 9:12-13, we read, “Then said the trees unto the vine, Come thou, [and] reign over us.  And the vine said unto them, Should I leave my wine, which cheereth God and man, and go to be promoted over the trees?”  Incidentally, in this parable, “the vine” represents Jesus Christ (John 15:1+5), and as everywhere in the Bible, good wine represents the shed blood of Jesus Christ.  Take for example, in Luke 10:34, we read how the Good Samaritan treated the half-dead man, “And went to [him], and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him.”  The wine represents the shed blood of Jesus Christ and the Oil represents the Holy Spirit (Psalms 23:5), and Jesus is that Good Samaritan as He saves every believer.  In Psalms 104:14-15, we read how the Lord God “causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth;  And wine [that] maketh glad the heart of man, [and] oil to make [his] face to shine, and bread [which] strengtheneth man’s heart.”  We have just observed what the wine and oil represents, and every believer should know that the bread represents Jesus Christ’s body that was given for us(please see John 6:35 and John 6:31 and Matthew 26:26, Mar 14:22, and Luke 22:19 ).

Before we leave the subject of wine at the feast (Jesus’s death on the final Passover) to which Vashti (national Israel) refused to come.  Did the wine (Jesus’s shed blood, as the atoning sacrifice culminating with His crucifixion) cheer God (make His heart merry)?  In Isaiah 53:5 we read how Jesus “[was] wounded for our transgressions, [he was] bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace [was] upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.”  And then in Isaiah 53:10, “Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put [him] to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see [his] seed, he shall prolong [his] days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.

One other aspect that relates to feasting and wine that is in the book of Esther not yet mentioned relates to the “banquets of wine” at which king Ahasuerus sat down with Haman in the presence of Esther (Esther, chapters 5-7).  Did God ever sit down at a feast table with Satan in the presence of believers where wine was also present?  Indeed He did.  At the last Passover feast, the “last supper,” God (as Jesus Christ) sat next to Judas Iscariot (who we know was indwelt with Satan, Luke 22:3) in the presence of Jesus’s eleven other disciples (believers) at the Passover feast where we know the Jesus instituted the sacrament service with wine (representing His shed blood).  As Jesus said in John 13:18, “I speak not of you all: I know whom I have chosen: but that the scripture (Psalms 41:9) may be fulfilled, He that eateth bread with me hath lifted up his heel against me.

Note also how that immediately after the banquet of chapter 7, Haman was hung on the high gallows that he had prepared for Mordecai.  The same day as the Passover Feast at which Judas Iscariot subsequently betrayed Jesus (under the prompting of Satan, see John 13:2), Jesus was hung on the cross (see Galatians 3:13).  The fact of the matter is, although Satan sought to destroy Jesus at the cross, it was Satan who was actually dealt a death blow on that same cross.  (Incidentally, at the same time, so was Judas Iscariot (who in effect was typifying Satan) hanged, see Matthew 27:5).  On the last day, Judgment Day, Satan and all his dominion will be permanently cut-off and cast into the lake of fire, as typified by the death and subsequent hanging of Haman’s ten sons.

Self-Centered?

             There is not too much that can be said about this other than God is the Great “I AM.”

In Revelation 4:11, we read, “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

In Esther 1:4, we read about king Ahasuerus’s “riches of his glorious kingdomand the honour of his excellent majesty …”  (Psalms 148:13, “Let them praise the name of the LORD: for his name alone is excellent; his glory [is] above the earth and heaven.” and Psalms 150:2“Praise him for his mighty acts: praise him according to his excellent greatness.“)

In Est 1:1 we read that the kingdom comprised 127 provinces.  This is a large prime number, and as a result, it cannot be divided into any smaller numbers.  God’s kingdom is also great and indivisible.  Just as the decrees or commandments of king Ahasuerus could not be rescinded, neither can the laws of God be nullified by another decree.  God’s law is eternal and irrevocable (as is to be expected of a just God). Matthew 24:35, Mark 13:31, Luk 21:33, God says, “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.”  God also says in the Bible (Romans 6:23), “For the wages of sin [is] death; but the gift of God [is] eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”  When someone goes to hell for his sins, it is an irrevocable edict.  And if someone is saved by grace (through Jesus’s perfect fulfillment of the law), God assures that person will remain in Heaven forever.

Rash?

             The anger and wrath of a just God in the face of sin is never rash.  When God sends sinners to hell for eternity, some might consider that rash (particularly in our day).  If all we see in Esther chapter 1 is a simple historical account, it might appear as though the action of Ahasuerus was rash.  Keep in mind that one sin is sufficient to send anyone to hell (just look at what happened to Adam and Eve, and hence all of mankind descended from them, for their one sin).  Queen Vashti was bidden by the king to come to the feast (while at the same time she was holding her own feast “for the women [in] the royal house which [belonged] to king Ahasuerus.”).  Remember the parable of Matthew 22:1-14?  The “remnant”, that Jesus said was bidden to the wedding feast, but who refused to come and then slew the King’s servants (the Christians), was National Israel!  Like Vashti, she acted rebelliously.  She refused to come.  She was disobedient.  Anyone who takes the same action in response to God’s command to “Come unto me” will be cast out of the presence of God forever.  Would anyone dare call that rash? [It has also been pointed out to this teacher, that Queen Vashti has attributes that can also be likened to the apostate church (as opposed to the true eternal church of Jesus), which in effect also refuses God’s command to come to His feast while conducting its own feast in the house that otherwise belongs to God]

Seeking and Being Bound to the Advice of Counselors?

             The answer to this question is found in the fact that God is in three persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.  That is why we read in Genesis 1:26,  “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.”  God Counsels with Himself.  Note also how there were 7 counselors.  The number seven pertains to the perfection of God’s plan, so it is entirely appropriate that there would be 7 counselors.  Please see Revelation 1:16 and 20 regarding the 7 stars in Jesus’s right hand that were described as a “mystery” and which were “the angels (messengers) of the seven churches.”  Finally, as was explained above, God is bound by His own law that He established before the foundation of the world.

 Queen Vashti Permanently Replaced by Esther?

             Many people have taken issue with the idea that Queen Vashti could represent National Israel and “her royal estate being given unto another that is better than she,” (The another, meaning Esther, a figure or type of the true eternal body of believers from both the Old and New Testaments.)  This can be so because the gospel of salvation (through the person and work of Jesus Christ) is intended for the whole world, both Jew and Gentile, and no longer exclusive to National Israel (although a remnant will nonetheless be saved).

Please see Matthew Chapter 22 where Jesus provides the parable about the king who prepares a marriage feast for his son, but those that were bidden did not come…”they made light of it” and others slew the servants of the king.  So then in verses 7 -9 we read, “But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy. Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage.” Isn’t this just like the case we read about for Queen Vashti, the kings first wife, and then the search for another wife who was better than she (more worthy)?

The concept of God becoming estranged from National Israel is a difficult one for most Christians to accept.  God said that except for adultery there could be no divorce (please see Matthew 5:32 based on Deuteronomy 24:1) and the Bible makes clear the spiritual adultery of National Israel (please see Hosea 2:2).  Nonetheless, based on Mark 10:2-12, God took the higher road, in that the final separation did not finally take place until the death of Jesus (God in the Flesh) on the cross.  That death effectively terminated the previous marriage according to the original law (Genesis 2:24), freeing Jesus to marry another whom God esteemed to be better than she, which is the new bride, the eternal Christian Church. 

The Likeness of Jesus Christ: Esther or Mordecai?

            Many, if not all, other commentaries on the Book of Esther claim that Esther (if she can be likened to anyone or anything) is a type of the Lord Jesus Christ, because (the authors of those commentaries claim), “Esther saved her people from destruction.”  Is that true?  Before we begin to answer that question, we must first be aware that absolutely nowhere in the Bible is a bride (or queen) ever likened to Jesus Christ.  Jesus is always the Bridegroom (or Prince or King), while the Church (the body of Believers) is always represented by a woman, the bride (see Matthew 9:15, Mark 2:19, Luk. 5:34, Psa. 19:5, Isa. 61:10, Jer. 7:34, Jer. 16:9, Jer. 25:10, Jer. 33:11, Joel 2:16, Rev. 18:23).  That having been said, was it Esther or Mordecai that saved the Jews?

In Esther 2:22, we read where Mordecai overheard a coup against the king, “And the thing was known to Mordecai, who told [it] unto Esther the queen; and Esther certified the king [thereof] in Mordecai’s name.”   Who had the knowledge at the first?, and in whose name was the testimony certified?  It was in Mordecai’s name, not Esther’s!  When we, as Christians, petition (pray to) Heavenly Father, do we close the prayer in the name of the bride, or the Bridegroom?  We are to pray to Heavenly Father in the name of Jesus Christ!  He is the One with knowledge that gives life, and He imparts it to us by His Holy Spirit.  We don’t even know how or what to pray for unless He first tells us.  Romans 8:26, “Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

Remember also that Esther was an orphan (being “fatherless,” she was, according to the Bible, spiritually desolate by nature…as everyone is before being saved), she was brought up or nourished by Mordecai, and not the other way around.  He was, in effect, her kinsman redeemer (much as Boaz, another figure of Christ, to Ruth the Moabitish widow…and as a “widow” she was another Biblical figure of everyone who is desolate by nature before being saved. Please see: https://bereansearching.com/2011/09/21/fatherless-and-widows-understanding-the-biblical-books-of-esther-and-ruth-a-work-in-progress/).  Esther went into the king’s presence at the instruction of Mordecai, walking by faith (“if I perish, I perish“).  She only acted as any faithful believer in Christ should act, humbly trusting in God’s mercy alone to save her.  Note that in Hebrews 12:2, we read, “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of [our] faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”  The Church is the vehicle that God uses to bring the salvation message to save the true Jews (the elect of God, the true believing Christians).  The believers pray to their Father in Heaven for the salvation of God’s elect in the name of Jesus Christ.  We walk by faith and not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7).  Furthermore, aren’t the believers told in Hebrews 4:16 to “…come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.“?

*Note: Shimei (or Shimhi or Shimi or Shimea https://www.blueletterbible.org/lexicon/h8096/kjv/wlc/0-1/) is also the name of a different man descended from Saul who we read about in II Samuel 16:5, “And when king David came to Bahurim, behold, thence came out a man of the family of the house of Saul, whose name [was] Shimei, the son of Gera: he came forth, and cursed still as he came.”  Later in II Samuel 19:16-20, Shimei repented of his sin against David and begged for mercy and David granted it in as we read in II Samuel 19:23, “Therefore the king said unto Shimei, Thou shalt not die. And the king sware unto him.”  However, in the case of that Shimei, we later read I Kings 2:36-46 that because he did not obey King Solomon’s commandment to not cross the Brook Kidron (he turned again to folly), King Solomon had that Shimei put to death. (For more background how this was pre-determined by David immediately before his own death in his last words of instruction to his son Solomon, please see also 1Kings 2:8&9)