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Bible Commentaries

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

Esther 10

Verse 1

A FINAL NOTE ON THE GREATNESS OF MORDECAI

"And the king Ahasuerus laid a tribute upon the land, and upon the isles of the sea. And all the acts of his power and of his might, and the full account of the greatness of Mordecai, whereunto the king advanced him, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Media and Persia? For Mordecai the Jew was next unto king Ahasuerus, and great among the Jews, and accepted of the multitude of the brethren, seeking the good of his people, and speaking peace to all his seed."

The purpose of the author in this very short chapter is that of stressing the greatness of Mordecai, the key word being that, in all the world, no one was any greater than Mordecai except the king. "Mordecai was next unto king Ahasuerus"! This required a preliminary note on how great was Ahasuerus. He was the ruler of most of the world as it was known then, from India to Ethiopia, with one hundred twenty-seven provinces, and here is added a note that he laid tribute upon the land and the isles of the sea. After the Grecian campaign, in which Xerxes suffered defeat, his dominion over the isles of the sea was reduced, but still existed. "Cyprus and Aradus were among the isles he still ruled."[1]

Not only was Mordecai next to king Ahasuerus, but his mighty deeds were written in the book of the chronicles of the Medo-Persian empire, along with that of their mighty kings. Incidentally, we have here the most conspicuous evidence that the Medo-Persian Empire was never two empires, but only one; the record of all their kings was in the same book!

"The author of Esther here emphasized the great power and wealth of Xerxes in order to show the marvelous providence of God in elevating a despised Jew to a position of honor and trust in such an empire."[2]

Many things we would like to know. For example, how long did Esther remain on the throne as queen? How many years did Mordecai continue as Prime Minister? "But Esther was not written to record the lives of emperors, queens, or prime ministers, but to preserve the record of a great national deliverance of God's people, a deliverance which would bring comfort and hope to millions of Jews through millenniums of time."[3]

"Seeking the good of his people, and speaking peace to all his seed" (Esther 10:3). "The meaning of these two phrases is that Mordecai procured both by word and deed the good and prosperity of his people. This is the way in which honor and fortune are attained, the way indicated in the 34th Psalm (Psalms 34:13-15), when teaching the fear of the Lord."[4]

Joyce Baldwin pointed out that, "These three verses are couched in thoroughly Biblical terms. Zechariah 9:10 speaks of the Messiah that, `He shall speak peace to the nations (Zechariah 9:10)'; and no earthly ruler could have done more than to speak peace to his people."[5]

"Speaking peace to all his seed" (Esther 10:3). In all probability Mordecai was a eunuch, and therefore we understand `his seed' here to be a reference to God's Israel.

Copyright Statement
Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
Bibliographical Information
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on Esther 10". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/bcc/esther-10.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.