Read Esther 7:1-6, 9-10, 9:20-22
7 And so the king and Haman went to eat with Esther 2for a second time. Over the wine the king asked her again, “Now, Queen Esther, what do you want? Tell me and you shall have it. I’ll even give you half the empire.”
3 Queen Esther answered, “If it please Your Majesty to grant my humble request, my wish is that I may live and that my people may live. 4My people and I have been sold for slaughter. If it were nothing more serious than being sold into slavery, I would have kept quiet and not bothered you about it;g but we are about to be destroyed—exterminated!”
5 Then King Xerxes asked Queen Esther, “Who dares to do such a thing? Where is this man?”
6 Esther answered, “Our enemy, our persecutor, is this evil man Haman!”
Haman stared at the king and queen in terror.
9Then one of them, who was named Harbonah, said, “Haman even went so far as to build a gallows at his house so that he could hang Mordecai, who saved Your Majesty’s life. And it’s twenty-two metres tall!”
“Hang Haman on it!” the king commanded.
10 So Haman was hanged on the gallows that he had built for Mordecai. Then the king’s anger cooled down.
20 Mordecai had these events written down and sent letters to all the Jews, near and far, throughout the Persian Empire, 21telling them to observe the fourteenth and fifteenth days of Adar as holidays every year. 22These were the days on which the Jews had rid themselves of their enemies; this was a month that had been turned from a time of grief and despair into a time of joy and happiness. They were told to observe these days with feasts and parties, giving gifts of food to one another and to the poor.
The whole book of Esther is read on the feast of Purim. Esther basically wins a beauty contest and becomes the wife of Ahasuerus (Xerxes) of Persia in about 490BC.
She uses her position to prevent the extermination of the Jewish people by Haman - one of Xerxes advisors.
Purim is celebrated with feasts, parties and gifts of food to one another and to the poor.
How do you show your gratitude to God?