“FOR SUCH A TIME AS THIS,” 19.03.19
Ask Dr.Brown, “What You Didn’t Know About Purim” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I6s8D-e3kvY&feature=youtu.be
http://www.bethshechinah.com/sermon/the-power-of-intercessory-prayer-rabbi-cal-goldberg/ Rabbi Cal Goldberg, Message From The Bema, Mar. 4, 2017.
“Purim, celebrated on the 14th of Adar, is the most fun-filled, action-packed day of the Jewish year. It commemorates our nation’s miraculous salvation more than two millennia ago” (http://www.chabad.org/holidays/purim/article_cdo/aid/1362/jewish/Purim-How-To-Guide.htm#utm_medium=email&utm_source=1_chabad.org_magazine_en&utm_campaign=en&utm_content=content ).
Rabbi Cal Goldberg, “Standing In The Gap,” 09.03.19, posted 12.03.19, Message From The Bema, http://www.bethshechinah.com/sermon/standing-in-the-gap-rabbi-cal-goldberg/
For those perhaps less familiar, the quoted sources provides an easy summary of the Book of Esther, and an understanding of what the celebration of Purim is all about. Now we will look a bit closer at the story and how it applies to our present day lives. Principles, parallels, lessons, abound in the story of Esther:
God chooses those who will be obedient to His call:
In the first two chapters of the book of Esther, God put in place an individual who would stand for His chosen people, and intercept, by God’s Hand, a plan of annihilation.
God still calls individuals today, who will stand in the gap, and prevent the plans of the Enemy from succeeding, by taking up “the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Eph.6:16), and wielding it against the Enemy, not holding onto our own lives (“and they did not love their lives even in the face of death” Rev.12:11) as though they were more important than God’s plans, and needs for our participation in them. Are you ready for such a time as this?
Principles of faithfulness, obedience in the face of Opposition and Persecution:
“All the king’s servants who were at the king’s gate bowed down and paid honor to Haman, for the king had commanded it. But Mordecai would not bow down or pay him honour” (Es.3:2). Mordecai, a faithful Jew, as was Daniel, would not bow to the demands of a pagan leader, and dishonour his God, Yahweh. Let us be as highly principled when the serious persecution of the last days comes upon us. .. . .
The Enemy is always looking for a place/way to strike (1 Pet.5:8):
“When Haman saw that Mordecai was not bowing down or paying him honor, Haman was filled with rage. . . . . So Haman sought to destroy all the Jews, the people of Mordecai, who were throughout the whole kingdom of Ahasuerus”(ch.3:5,6).
“If it pleases the king, let an edict be written to destroy them. . . . It was written in the name of King Ahasuerus and sealed with the king’s ring. Dispatches were sent by couriers into all the king’s provinces, stating to destroy, slay, and annihilate all the Jews” (3:9-13).
“When Mordecai learned all that was done, he tore his clothes, put on sackcloth and ashes, and went out into the middle of the city crying out in a loud and bitter voice. In each and every province where the king’s edict and law came, there was great mourning among the Jews, with fasting, weeping and wailing. Many put on sackcloth and ashes”(4:1,3).
The spirit of Haman has continued throughout the centuries. That same spirit of hate and persecution has tried to annihilate God’s chosen people repeatedly. Still very much at work today . . . . “There is that same anti-semitic spirit at work today. . . . . always seems to come up around Purim.” (Rabbi Cal Goldberg, Message From the Bema, Mar.4/17).
Identifying and Exposing The Enemy:
“He also gave him a written copy of the decree, which had been distributed in Shushan, for their annihilation, to show to Esther and to explain it to her. He instructed her to go in to the king, to beg his favor and plead before him on behalf of her people. Hathach went back and reported to Esther what Mordecai had said”(Ch.4:8,9). When we expose the Enemy and his plan, then something can be done about it. When Watchmen receive the warning (“Watchman, what of the night? Watchman, what of the night?” Isa.21:11).
Identifying the Enemy is a key component of warfare:
“King Ahasuerus responded to Queen Esther, “Who is he? Where is the man that presumed to do this?” Esther replied, “The man—the adversary and foe—is this wicked Haman!” (7:6,7). “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the worldly forces of this darkness, and against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places” (Eph.6:12). When we shine God’s light on the Enemy’s plans, then the plans can be demolished. We must “put on the whole armour of God” (Eph.6:10) (Rabbi Cal Goldberg, Message From The Bema, Mar. 4, 2017), and walk in it daily, so the Enemy’s plans cannot prosper.
- The Power of Prayer: “Prayer and the Word of God is the most powerful thing of all” (Goldberg, 09.03.19). “If Esther had not interceded, a disaster would have happened. . . . We should never underestimate the power of prayer.”
- “Loving not your life unto death” (Rev.12:11) “Who knows whether you have attained royal status for such a time as this?” (4:14).
“The message of Purim is the power of intercession and how Queen Esther and Mordecai were willing to intercede on behalf of their people in order to overturn a decree. . We can overturn the Enemy’s plans through effective intercession. . . . .God has a way of turning things around” (Message from the Bema, Rabbi Cal Goldberg, March 4, 2017). “The story of Esther is a picture of the end-time believer and how we have been grafted into royalty. It’s also a message of the power of prayer; and how prayer and fasting changed the heart of a king who overturned a decree of death.”
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