Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | January 22, 2016

“You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies” – “and they will know that I am the Lord”

Today’s devotion comes from Esther chapter 6.

“1 During that night the king could not sleep so he gave an order to bring the book of records, the chronicles, and they were read before the king.  2 It was found written what Mordecai 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 entered the outer court of the king’s palace in order to speak to the king about hanging 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 whom the king desires to honor?”  And Haman said to 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 the horse on which the king has ridden, and on whose head a 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, and proclaim before him, ‘Thus it shall be done to the man whom the king desires to honor.’”

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, with his head covered.  13 Haman recounted to 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 of 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 brought Haman to the banquet which Esther had prepared.”  Esther chapter 6.

———————————-

God’s sovereignty is on magnificent display again in today’s Scripture.  Let us first meditate on God’s total and tight control over all the details. 

God caused King Ahasuerus to not sleep.

Out of the many, many things that could have gone through the king’s mind, God caused the dominating thought in his mind to be what Mordecai had done for him.

God caused the record to be found to show exactly what Mordecai had done for him.

Out of all the people who could have been in the court to answer the king’s question as to what is to be done for the man whom the king desires to honor, God caused it to be Haman.

Although King Ahasuerus had no intention to trap Haman, God caused the words of the king to be so innocent that Haman thinks the king wants to honor him, so as to cause Haman’s pride and Haman’s own suggestion (of how to honor the man whom the king desires to honor) to be the cause of the honoring of Mordecai.  “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.”  Verse 11.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;  …”  Psalm 23:5.

God delivers and otherwise blesses His people in the face of their enemies, such that their enemies know the deliverance and other blessings given to His people is from the LORD. 

(As a side note, consider that the deliverance and other blessings is a single total package from God like a single table holding all kinds of plates of food as in “You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies”.  God’s sovereign coherent action is in sharp contrast to how man thinks and operates in terms of random, plural, contradictory, and insufficient actions.)

Accordingly, we see in today’s Scripture that the ungodly Haman’s wise men and Zeresh his wife knew that God’s turning the tables on Haman was from the LORD by their statement:  “If Mordecai, before whom you have begun to fall, is of Jewish origin, you will not overcome him, but will surely fall before him.”  Verse 13.

“The Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord, when I stretch out My hand on Egypt and bring out the sons of Israel from their midst.”  Exodus 7:5.

“19 O Lord, my strength and my stronghold,
And my refuge in the day of distress,
To You the nations will come
From the ends of the earth and say,
“Our fathers have inherited nothing but falsehood,
Futility and things of no profit.”
20 Can man make gods for himself?
Yet they are not gods!

21 “Therefore behold, I am going to make them know—
This time I will make them know
My power and My might;
And they shall know that My name is the Lord.”  Jeremiah 16:19-21.

“I will magnify Myself, sanctify Myself, and make Myself known in the sight of many nations;  and they will know that I am the Lord.”’  Ezekiel 32:15.

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