Esther in the Bible: Lessons We Learn from Her Story

Do you like thrilling stories? If you haven’t already, you should read Esther in the Bible. Heroes, villains, evil plots, and divine triumphs! 

What’s especially surprising is that God is not mentioned in the book even once! However, the work of His hands is threaded throughout the entire story.

In the story of Esther, we glean valuable life lessons that transcend time and culture. Esther’s story teaches us about courage, as she risks her life to save her people, and the importance of timing, as events unfold with strategic precision. The narrative shows us the significance of standing up against injustice, even in seemingly hopeless circumstances, and the power of faith and prayer. Additionally, Esther’s humility and obedience to a higher purpose serve as a model for leadership and resilience in the face of adversity. The Book of Esther inspires us to embrace our roles in the unfolding story of our lives, recognizing that each of us has the potential to make a significant impact.

Before we dig too much deeper into this book of the Bible, there are a few questions we need to stop and consider.

  • What is the main message of the book of Esther?
  • Who was Esther in the Bible and what did she do?
  • What made her so special?
  • What can we learn from Esther in the Bible?

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Who Was Esther in the Bible?

Women of the Bible Study

Esther’s story is chronicled in the book of Esther in the BibleMakes sense, right? You will not find her mentioned in each chapter, but if you want a good idea of how the Lord used her life in light of the culture and times she lived, you should definitely read the entire book of Esther. 

Here are a few of the main points and events of her story.

Esther Was A Young Orphan Jew

Esther was living in the custody of her cousin Mordecai during the Persian Empire. Mordecai and Esther were from the tribe of Benjamin. In Esther chapter 2 we learn the following about Mordecai:

“Mordecai had been taken from Jerusalem with the exiles who had been deported with Jeconiah king of Judah, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had deported. 7 He was the guardian to Hadassah, that is Esther, his uncle’s daughter, for she had no father or mother.” Esther 2:6-7 NASB

Esther Was A Victim of Child Trafficking

When we initially read her story, we may not think that Esther was a victim of trafficking. Child trafficking is defined as “the “recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt” of a child for the purpose of exploitation”.

So, if we look a bit closer at Esther chapter 2 and consider the reason why she was brought to the king, we understand that she was victimized in this way. Esther was a beautiful woman and was brought to the king with other beautiful young virgins.

Esther Became Queen of Susa

Despite all of this, God remained with Esther and caused her to find favor with all who were associated with her.

And Esther was finding favor in the eyes of all who saw her. – Esther 2:15

When it was her turn to go to the King, she found favor with him also.

The king loved Esther more than all the women, and she found favor and kindness with him more than all the virgins, so that he set the royal turban on her head and made her queen – Esther 2:17

God Used Esther to Save His People

Esther chapter 3 introduces us to an evil man named Haman. Haman was angry with Mordecai (remember Mordecai is Esther’s cousin) for now bowing down to him. When Haman discovered that Mordecai belonged to the Jews, he devised a plot to annihilate them all from the land.

When Esther learns of this evil plan she tells Mordecai…

 “Go, gather all the Jews who are found in Susa, and fast for me; do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my attendants also will fast in the same way. And then I will go in to the king, which is not in accordance with the law; and if I perish, I perish.” – Esther 4:16

After this three-day fast, God gives Esther the wisdom and courage to go to the King and plead on behalf of her people as the Queen of Persia. She puts on her royal robes and comes before the King even though it was against the law. Once again, she found favor with the King. Haman’s evil plot was reversed and God’s people were spared.

Do Your Own Esther Bible Study

There is much to learn about the life of Esther that are not fully covered here today. I would encourage you to do your own in-depth study of Esther. You can use the character Bible study worksheets to help you with this.

Bible Study Worksheet Kits

Book of Esther Summary by Chapter

Here is a brief summary of the main messages of Esther found in the first 7 chapters in the book of Esther in the Bible.

  1. Chapter 1: King Xerxes holds a great banquet, and Queen Vashti refuses to display herself, leading to her removal.
  2. Chapter 2: Esther, a Jewish orphan, is brought to the king’s palace. She won the favor of the King’s eunuch and eventually became the new queen through a royal beauty contest. Her cousin Mordecai discovers a plot against the king.
  3. Chapter 3: Haman, a high-ranking official, convinces King Ahasuerus to issue a royal decree to annihilate all the Jewish people.
  4. Chapter 4: Her Uncle Mordecai urges Esther to intercede with the king on behalf of the Jews, risking her life for their salvation.
  5. Chapter 5: Esther, after fasting, approaches the king, who extends his scepter, allowing her to request a banquet with Haman.
  6. Chapter 6: The king learns of Mordecai’s earlier loyalty, and Haman is forced to honor him.
  7. Chapter 7: At the second banquet, Esther reveals Haman’s plot, leading to his downfall.
  8. Chapter 8: King Xerxes grants Esther and Mordecai the authority to counteract Haman’s decree, saving the Jews. God uses her royal throne to save the Jewish community.
  9. Chapter 9: The Jews defend themselves against their enemies, and the feast of Purim is established to commemorate their victory.
  10. Chapter 10: At the king’s command, Mordecai rises to prominence in the kingdom, and the book concludes with his importance and the peace of the Jews.

Characteristics of Esther in the Bible

Let’s consider Esther’s character. What kind of woman do the scriptures reveal her to be? 

Esther Was a Woman of Courage

Esther’s courage is threaded throughout her story. Multiple moments required her to step out of her comfort zone and courageously trust God for His divine protection. The most courageous moment we see would be the moment that she stepped before the king. Even as queen, it was not legal for her to come before the king without a proper invite. The penalty for this was death. She did this at the risk of her own life.

Esther Was a Woman of Submission

Esther understood the importance of the divine authority God had placed in her life. Even after becoming queen, we see her submit to her cousin, Mordecai. He had asked her not to disclose to anyone in the palace that she was a Jew. He also encouraged her not to fear the king’s wrath. Perhaps God had placed her in the position of queen to save her people.

Esther submitted to her cousin Mordecai and listened to the wisdom he spoke to her. She continued to follow his guidance and submit to his authority.

Esther Was a Woman of Wisdom

In the book of Esther chapters 5-7 are when we see Esther’s wisdom shine! Here is where we see her devise a plan to expose Haman’s plot and plead with the King for the sake of her people. She used patience and humility in her conversations and requests. She was given the royal crown to save her people.

Esther Was A Woman of Faith

When confronted with the imminent threat to her people, Esther didn’t rely solely on political acumen or personal strength. Instead, she turned to fasting and prayer, demonstrating a profound connection with her faith. Esther’s decision to approach King Xerxes, risking her life to plead for the salvation of the Jewish people, was underpinned by a conviction that transcended worldly concerns. Her faith not only guided her actions but also served as a source of strength and courage in the face of daunting challenges. Esther’s story underscores the transformative power of faith, portraying it as a wellspring of resilience and an anchor in times of uncertainty, inspiring generations to come.

Esther Was A Woman of Influence

Though her authority was derived from her position as queen, it was her strategic use of influence rather than raw power that defined her impact. Esther skillfully navigated the corridors of political intrigue, using her wit and charm to sway the decisions of King Xerxes. Beyond the opulence of her royal status, she wielded her influence for a higher purpose – to save her people from impending doom. Esther’s ability to exert a quiet yet compelling influence over the king, coupled with her courage in advocating for justice, showcases the transformative potential of leadership grounded in wisdom, grace, and a deep sense of responsibility. Her story resonates as a timeless example of how one person, armed with courage and conviction, can bring about positive change through the subtle but powerful art of influence. 

What Can We Learn From Esther in the Bible

Who Was Esther in the Bible

Not only do we learn much about Esther and her godly characteristics, but there is also much we can learn about God and how we can live in a way that is pleasing to Him.  

God’s Plan Will Prevail

Many plans are in a person’s heart, but the advice of the Lord will stand. – Proverbs 19:21

Haman planned to destroy the Jews. He had the means to do it. Fortunately, this story gives us a great example of how God’s plan will prevail. No amount of power or authority can stand against God and His plan for His people. God placed this Jewish woman in the right time and right place to save her people.

Following God is Not Easy

This story also shows us that following God and doing the right thing is not easy. Many people believe that once you give your life to the Lord all your problems and difficulties will fade away. This could not be farther from the truth. Following God often leads to trials and difficulties. 

Esther had a hard choice to make. She could go before the king to plead for the salvation of her people at the risk of her own life, or she could have chosen not to. Thankfully, she decided to follow God into a difficult situation and He honored her for it.

Prayer Changes Things

Prayer is our direct line of communication to God. Prayer is how we access and use the resources given to us in the spiritual realm. When Esther prayed and called all of the Jews in the province to pray, they were bringing the kingdom of God into their earthly circumstances. The battle that we fight in the unseen spiritual realm affects what happens in our lives and surroundings.

Prayer accomplishes great things!

God Has A Purpose for Us

I love the story of Esther in the Bible because it shows us how God uses ordinary people for extraordinary purposes (I know that’s cliche… but it’s true!). Esther was not rich, popular, or powerful. But God – His presence, power, and purpose – went before her. He used her to accomplish greatness. 

The character of Esther in the Bible is a tapestry woven with threads of courage, wisdom, grace, and humility. Her story resonates through the ages, offering lessons on leadership, faith, and the enduring power of conviction. As we reflect on Esther’s journey, may we draw inspiration from her remarkable qualities to navigate the challenges of our own lives with strength and grace.

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