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The King Honors Mordecai
On that night the king could not sleep, and he gave orders to bring the book of records, the annals, and they were read to the king. 2It was found written how Mordecai had told about Bigthana and Teresh, two of the king’s eunuchs, who guarded the threshold, and who had conspired to assassinate King Ahasuerus. 3Then the king said, “What honor or distinction has been bestowed on Mordecai for this?” The king’s servants who attended him said, “Nothing has been done for him.” 4The king said, “Who is in the court?” Now Haman had just entered the outer court of the king’s palace to speak to the king about having Mordecai hanged on the gallows that he had prepared for him. 5So the king’s servants told him, “Haman is there, standing in the court.” The king said, “Let him come in.” 6So Haman came in, and the king said to him, “What shall be done for the man whom the king wishes to honor?” Haman said to himself, “Whom would the king wish to honor more than me?” 7So Haman said to the king, “For the man whom the king wishes to honor, 8let royal robes be brought, which the king has worn, and a horse that the king has ridden, with a royal crown on its head. 9Let the robes and the horse be handed over to one of the king’s most noble officials; let him robe the man whom the king wishes to honor, and let him conduct the man on horseback through the open square of the city, proclaiming before him: ‘Thus shall it be done for the man whom the king wishes to honor.’ ” 10Then the king said to Haman, “Quickly, take the robes and the horse, as you have said, and do so to the Jew Mordecai who sits at the king’s gate. Leave out nothing that you have mentioned.” 11So Haman took the robes and the horse and robed Mordecai and led him riding through the open square of the city, proclaiming, “Thus shall it be done for the man whom the king wishes to honor.”
12 Then Mordecai returned to the king’s gate, but Haman hurried to his house, mourning and with his head covered. 13When Haman told his wife Zeresh and all his friends everything that had happened to him, his advisers and his wife Zeresh said to him, “If Mordecai, before whom your downfall has begun, is of the Jewish people, you will not prevail against him, but will surely fall before him.”
Haman’s Downfall and Mordecai’s Advancement
14 While they were still talking with him, the king’s eunuchs arrived and hurried Haman off to the banquet that Esther had prepared.
Es 6:1-14. Ahasuerus Rewards Mordecai for Former Service.
1. the king … commanded to bring the book of records of the chronicles—In Eastern courts, there are scribes or officers whose duty it is to keep a journal of every occurrence worthy of notice. A book of this kind, abounding with anecdotes, is full of interest. It has been a custom with Eastern kings, in all ages, frequently to cause the annals of the kingdom to be read to them. It is resorted to, not merely as a pastime to while away the tedium of an hour, but as a source of instruction to the monarch, by reviewing the important incidents of his own life, as well as those of his ancestors. There was, therefore, nothing uncommon in this Persian monarch calling for the court journal. But, in his being unable to sleep at that particular juncture, in his ordering the book then to be read to him, and in his attention having been specially directed to the important and as yet unrewarded services of Mordecai, the immediate interposition of Providence is distinctly visible.
4. Now Haman was come into the outward court—This was early in the morning. It is the invariable custom for kings in Eastern countries to transact business before the sun is hot, often in the open air, and so Haman was in all probability come officially to attend on his master.
6. What shall be done unto the man whom the king delighteth to honour?—In bestowing tokens of their favor, the kings of Persia do not at once, and as it were by their own will, determine the kind of honor that shall be awarded; but they turn to the courtier standing next in rank to themselves, and ask him what shall be done to the individual who has rendered the service specified; and according to the answer received, the royal mandate is issued.
8. the royal apparel … which the king useth to wear—A coat which has been on the back of a king or prince is reckoned a most honorable gift, and is given with great ceremony.
the horse that the king rideth upon—Persia was a country of horses, and the highbred charger that the king rode upon acquired, in the eyes of his venal subjects, a sort of sacredness from that circumstance.
and the crown royal which is set upon his head—either the royal turban, or it may be a tiara, with which, on state processions, the horse's head was adorned.
9. delivered to the hand of one of the king's most noble princes … array the man—On grand and public occasions, the royal steed is led by the highest subject through the principal streets of the city, a ceremony which may occupy several hours.
11. Then Haman took, &c.—This sudden reverse, however painful to Haman as an individual, is particularly characteristic of the Persian manners.
14. came the king's chamberlains, and hasted to bring Haman unto the banquet that Esther had prepared—Besides the invitation given to an entertainment, a message is always sent to the guests, immediately at the day and hour appointed, to announce that all things are ready.