It is rare, but there are times I have difficulty coming up with someone to say about a passage, whether I’m preaching or writing. Sometimes the chapter is so clear, so rich, so perfect that I struggle to come up with anything to add.
Esther 7 is one of those passages.
Esther’s speech is eloquent. The indictment of Haman so unbelievably satisfying. The comedic timing of Harbona coming by to suggest, “Why not impale him on his own spike?” is absolute perfection. If you’ve been reading along so far, you don’t need me to tell you it’s great - that’s self-evident.
I think one of the reasons the passage works so well - and resonates with us so deeply - is the satisfying sense of justice being done. Haman and Esther both get exactly what they deserve - virtue is rewarded, evil punished all in the blink of an eye.
We find ourselves cheering along because, frankly, it's so rare to see true justice in the world we live in. In the real world, evil often goes unpunished, and good people frequently suffer for the wrongs of others. Police get the wrong guy, people languish in prison for crimes they didn’t commit and criminals brazenly relish in their crimes on television. We live in a fallen world, and justice can often feel impossibly out of reach.
Yet we, as citizens of the Kingdom of God are commanded to bring justice to His world. We are called to fight for the powerless, the poor and the oppressed. Even when these fights seem hopeless, we are told to add our voices to the chorus crying out for His “justice to roll down like waters…” (Amos 5:24 ESV) And, of course, we are instructed to “live justly” (Micah 6:8 ESV) in our own lives and dealings, ensuring that at the least we are not making the injustices of the world any worse.
We will not win every battle. But with every attempt we are pushing back against the Enemy and His power. With every defiant fist raised to the sky, we remind the world that Christians stand for justice and oppose tyranny. And every time we offer aid to the hopeless and meek, we show that our and theirs Lord stands beside them in the struggle.
What injustice exists in your community that needs to be righted? What unpopular but righteous cause can you add your voice to? Who do you know is oppressed and in need of a champion?
Ask God to show you where you can make a stand for justice, and to give you the courage to do so boldly.