Tag Archives: Old Testament

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Who Was Esther?

Nov 26, 2019 |

Quick Look at the Book of Esther:

God’s hand of providence and protection on behalf of His people is evident throughout the Book of Esther, though His name does not appear once. Haman’s plot brings grave danger to the Jews and is countered by the courage of beautiful Esther and the counsel of her wise cousin Mordecai, resulting in a great deliverance. The Feast of Purim becomes an annual reminder of God’s faithfulness on behalf of His people.

Esther’s Hebrew name was Hadassah, “Myrtle” (Esther 2:7), but her Persian name Ester was derived from the Persian word for “Star” (stara). The Greek title for this book is Esther, and the Latin title is Hester.

 

The Background of Esther’s Story:

Ahasuerus is the Hebrew name and Xerxes the Greek name of Khshayarsh, king of Persia in 486 – 464 b.c. According to Esther 1:3, the feast of Xerxes took place in his third year, or 483 b.c. The historian Herodotus refers to this banquet as the occasion of Xerxes’ planning for a military campaign against Greece. But in 479 b.c. he was defeated by the Greeks at Salamis, and Herodotus tells us that he sought consolation in his harem. This corresponds to the time when he held a “contest” and crowned Esther queen of Persia (Esther 2:16, 17). Since the events of the rest of the book took place in 473 b.c. (Esther 3:7 – 12), the chronological span is ten years (483 – 473 b.c.). The probable time of authorship was between 464 b.c. (the end of Xerxes’ reign; see Esther 10:2, 3) and about 435 b.c. (the palace at Susa was destroyed by fire during that period, and such an event would probably have been mentioned). The historical and linguistic features of Esther do not support a date later than 400 b.c., as there is no trace of Greek influence.

Xerxes was a boisterous man of emotional extremes, whose actions were often strange and contradictory. This fact sheds light on his ability to sign a decree for the annihilation of the Jews, and two months later to sign a second decree allowing them to overthrow their enemies.

Esther was addressed to the many Jews who did not return to their homeland. Not all the godly people left—some did not return for legitimate reasons. Most were disobedient in staying in Persia. Nevertheless, God continued to care for His people in voluntary exile.

Finding Christ in the Book of Esther:

Esther, like Christ, puts herself in the place of death for her people but receives the approval of the king. She also portrays Christ’s work as Advocate on our behalf. This book reveals another satanic threat to destroy the Jewish people and thus, the messianic line. God continues to preserve His people in spite of opposition and danger, and nothing can prevent the coming of the Messiah.

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INTERESTED IN KNOWING MORE ABOUT THE WRITERS AND CHARACTERS IN THE BIBLE? CHECK OUT THESE ARTICLES:

WHO WROTE THE BOOK OF ROMANS?
WHO WROTE THE BOOK OF JOSHUA?
WHO WROTE THE BOOK OF JOB?
WHO WAS EVE?

WHO WAS MOSES?

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This article on Esther comes from the Open Bible.

The Open Bible offers clean and easy navigation through the connectivity of Scripture with a time-tested complete reference system trusted by millions. It is now available wherever Bibles are sold.

 

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The Holy Spirit in the Old Testament: Infographic

Some Bible readers assume that the Spirit’s activity in Scripture is limited to the New Testament. But actually He is just as active in the Old Testament.

 

This infographic illustrates 13 examples of the Holy Spirit working in the Old Testament.

For a more detailed look at seven ways the Holy Spirit works through the Old Testament, be sure to read this article.

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This commentary is from the New King James Study Bible. With more than 2 million copies sold, it’s no secret that the NKJV Study Bible is a reliable guide for your journey into God’s Word. This Bible provides a complete resource for study, including thousands of notes, articles, extensive cross-references, and features contributed by top evangelical scholars.

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The Holy Spirit in the Old Testament

Feb 21, 2017 |

No clearer statement of the intimate interworking of the triune God—Father, Son and Holy Spirit—and especially of the Spirit’s powerful role can be found in the Old Testament than in Isaiah’s prophecy of the Servant of the Lord (Is. 42:1–9). The passage summarizes the redeeming work of all three Persons of the Trinity in the salvation of the lost. Thus it ties together in remarkable harmony both the Old Testament and New Testament understandings of God’s grace. It also sheds light on our understanding of the Holy Spirit.

Some Bible readers assume that the Spirit’s activity in Scripture is limited to the New Testament. But actually He is just as active in the Old Testament:

 

1. The Spirit participated in creation (Gen. 1:2; Job 26:13; Is. 32:15).

2. The Spirit gives life to humanity and the other creatures (Ps. 104:29, 30). It is interesting that when Genesis says God endows people with life by breathing into their nostrils the “breath of life” (Gen. 2:7), the word for “breath” is the same word translated elsewhere as “spirit.”

3. The Spirit strives with sinners (Gen. 6:3), which is perhaps related to His work in convicting people of sin (John 16:8–11).

4. The Spirit came upon certain judges, warriors, and prophets in a way that gave them extraordinary power: for example, Joshua (Num. 27:18), Othniel (Judg. 3:10), Gideon (6:34), Samson (13:25; 14:6), and Saul (1 Sam. 10:9, 10). However, the Spirit later departed from Saul because of his disobedience (16:14).

** Check out this free infographic illustrating 13 ways the Holy Spirit worked in the Old Testament.**

5. The Spirit played a prominent role in the long span of Old Testament prophecy. David declared that “the Spirit of the Lord spoke by me, and His word was on my tongue” (2 Sam. 23:2). Likewise, Ezekiel reported that “the Spirit entered me when He spoke to me” (Ezek. 2:2).

6. The Spirit inspired holiness in Old Testament believers (Ps. 143:10). And Scripture promised that someday God would put His Spirit in His people in a way that would cause them to live according to His statutes (Ezek. 36:27).

7. The Spirit was crucial in helping God’s people anticipate the ministry of the Messiah. For example, Isaiah 11:1–5 is a trinitarian preview of the working of the Father, the Spirit, and the Son, who is the Branch of Jesse. Looking forward to the ministry of Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit inspired Isaiah to prophesy: “The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon Him” (Is. 11:2), inspiring God’s Chosen One with wisdom, understanding, counsel, might, knowledge, fear of the Lord, righteousness, and faithfulness. Thus we come full cycle to the New Testament, where Jesus claimed to be the fulfillment of this prophecy (Is. 61:1, 2; Luke 4:18, 19).

** Check out this free infographic illustrating 13 ways the Holy Spirit worked in the Old Testament.**

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This commentary is from the New King James Study Bible. With more than 2 million copies sold, it’s no secret that the NKJV Study Bible is a reliable guide for your journey into God’s Word. This Bible provides a complete resource for study, including thousands of notes, articles, extensive cross-references, and features contributed by top evangelical scholars.

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Think About It:

Some Bible readers assume that the Spirit’s activity in Scripture is limited to the New Testament. But actually He is just as active in the Old Testament