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New American Standard Bible: 1995 Update

Esther 5–7

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Chapter 5

Esther Plans a Banquet

1 Now it came about aon the third day that Esther put on her royal robes and stood bin the inner court of the king’s palace in front of the king’s 1rooms, and the king was sitting on his royal throne in the 2throne room, opposite the entrance to the palace.

2 When the king saw Esther the queen standing in the court, ashe obtained favor in his sight; and bthe king extended to Esther the golden scepter which was in his hand. So Esther came near and touched the top of the scepter.

3 Then the king said to her, “What is troubling you, Queen Esther? And what is your request? aEven to half of the kingdom it shall be given to you.”

4 Esther said, “If it pleases the king, may the king and Haman come this day to the banquet that I have prepared for him.”

5 Then the king said, “aBring Haman quickly that we may do 1as Esther desires.” So the king and Haman came to the banquet which Esther had prepared.

6 1As they drank their wine at the banquet, athe king said to Esther, “bWhat is your petition, for it shall be granted to you. And what is your request? Even to half of the kingdom it shall be done.”

7 So Esther replied, “My petition and my request is:

8 aif I have found favor in the sight of the king, and if it pleases the king to grant my petition and do 1what I request, may the king and Haman come to bthe banquet which I will prepare for them, and tomorrow I will do 2as the king says.”

Haman’s Pride

9 Then Haman went out that day glad and pleased of heart; but when Haman saw Mordecai ain the king’s gate and bthat he did not stand up or 1tremble before him, Haman was filled with anger against Mordecai.

10 Haman controlled himself, however, went to his house and 1sent for his friends and his wife aZeresh.

11 Then Haman recounted to them the glory of his riches, and the 1anumber of his sons, and every instance where the king had magnified him and how he had 2bpromoted him above the princes and servants of the king.

12 Haman also said, “Even Esther the queen let no one but me come with the king to the banquet which she had prepared; and atomorrow also I am 1invited by her with the king.

13 “Yet all of this 1does not satisfy me every time I see Mordecai the Jew sitting at athe king’s gate.”

14 Then Zeresh his wife and all his friends said to him, “aHave a 1gallows fifty cubits high made and in the morning ask the king to have Mordecai hanged on it; then go joyfully with the king to the banquet.” And the 2advice pleased Haman, so he had the gallows made.

Chapter 6

The King Plans to Honor Mordecai

1 During that night 1the king acould not sleep so he gave an order to bring bthe book of records, the chronicles, and they were read before the king.

2 It was found written what aMordecai had reported concerning Bigthana and Teresh, two of the king’s eunuchs who were doorkeepers, that they had sought to lay hands on King Ahasuerus.

3 The king said, “What honor or dignity has been bestowed on Mordecai for this?” Then the king’s servants who attended him said, “Nothing has been done for him.”

4 So the king said, “Who is in the court?” Now Haman had just aentered the outer court of the king’s palace in order to speak to the king about bhanging Mordecai on the gallows which he had prepared for him.

5 The king’s servants said to him, “Behold, Haman is standing in the court.” And the king said, “Let him come in.”

6 So Haman came in and the king said to him, “What is to be done for the man awhom the king desires to honor?” And Haman said 1to himself, “Whom would the king desire to honor more than me?”

7 Then Haman said to the king, “For the man whom the king desires to honor,

8 let them bring a royal robe which the king has worn, and athe horse on which the king has ridden, and on whose head ba royal crown has been placed;

9 and let the robe and the horse be handed over to one of the king’s most noble princes and let them array the man whom the king desires to honor and lead him on horseback through the city square, aand proclaim before him, ‘Thus it shall be done to the man whom the king desires to honor.’ ”

Haman Must Honor Mordecai

10 Then the king said to Haman, “Take quickly the robes and the horse as you have said, and do so for Mordecai the Jew, who is sitting at the king’s gate; do not fall short in anything of all that you have said.”

11 So Haman took the robe and the horse, and arrayed Mordecai, and led him on horseback through the city square, and proclaimed before him, “Thus it shall be done to the man whom the king desires to honor.”

12 Then Mordecai returned to the king’s gate. But Haman hurried home, mourning, awith his head covered.

13 Haman recounted ato Zeresh his wife and all his friends everything that had happened to him. Then his wise men and Zeresh his wife said to him, “If Mordecai, before whom you have begun to fall, is 1of Jewish origin, you will not overcome him, but will surely fall before him.”

14 While they were still talking with him, the king’s eunuchs arrived and hastily abrought Haman to the banquet which Esther had prepared.

Chapter 7

Esther’s Plea

1 Now the king and Haman came to drink wine with Esther the queen.

2 And the king said to Esther on the second day also 1as they drank their wine at the banquet, “aWhat is your petition, Queen Esther? It shall be granted you. And what is your request? bEven to half of the kingdom it shall be done.”

3 Then Queen Esther replied, “aIf I have found favor in your sight, O king, and if it pleases the king, let my life be given me as my petition, and my people as my request;

4 for awe have been sold, I and my people, to be destroyed, bto be killed and to be annihilated. Now if we had only been sold as slaves, men and women, I would have remained silent, for the 1trouble would not be commensurate with the 2annoyance to the king.”

5 Then King Ahasuerus 1asked Queen Esther, “Who is he, and where is he, 2who would presume to do thus?”

6 Esther said, “aA foe and an enemy is this wicked Haman!” Then Haman became terrified before the king and queen.

Haman Is Hanged

7 The king arose ain his anger from 1drinking wine and went into bthe palace garden; but Haman stayed to beg for his life from Queen Esther, for he saw that harm had been determined against him by the king.

8 Now when the king returned from the palace garden into the 1place where they were drinking wine, Haman was falling on athe couch where Esther was. Then the king said, “Will he even assault the queen with me in the house?” As the word went out of the king’s mouth, they covered Haman’s face.

9 Then Harbonah, one of the eunuchs who were before the king said, “Behold indeed, athe gallows standing at Haman’s house fifty cubits high, which Haman made for Mordecai bwho spoke good on behalf of the king!” And the king said, “Hang him on it.”

10 aSo they hanged Haman on the 1gallows which he had prepared for Mordecai, band the king’s anger subsided.

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