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Bible Commentaries

The Pulpit Commentaries

Esther 10

Verses 1-3

EXPOSITION

CONCLUSION.—THE GREATNESS OF AHASUERUS, AND OF MORDECAI UNDER HIM (Esther 10:1-3.). The Book of Esther might have been expected to terminate with the institution of the Purim feast. All that has gone before is subordinate to this, and the reader would be satisfied, and require no more, if the book stopped at the end of Esther 9:1-32. But the writer, perhaps from personal attachment to Mordecai, perhaps from mere patriotic pride in him, cannot bring himself to lay down the pen until he has put on record the full greatness of his hero, and the strength and support that he was to the Jews of his day. He has already told us that "this man Mordecai waxed greater and greater" (Esther 9:4). He now expands this statement. The essence of Mordecai's greatness consisted in his being "next unto king Ahasuerus" (Esther 9:3), his chief minister and alter ego. Thus the greatness of Ahasuerus is involved in his. So the chapter commences with a few words of Ahasuerus' greatness. It has already been noticed more than once (Esther 1:1; Esther 8:9) that he "ruled from India to Ethiopia, over an hundred and twenty-seven provinces." It is now added that he "laid a tribute upon the land, and upon the isles of the sea" (ver 1). This mention of "laying a tribute' was the chief reason why in former days so many writers, including Hooker, identified the Ahasuerus of this book with Darius, the son of Hystaspes. But it is not necessary to suppose that the first laying of a tribute on the provinces of the Persian empire is here intended; and Xerxes, after the Grecian expedition, which seriously altered the bounds of his dominions, may well have made a new assessment, in which the islands of the AEgean, or some of them, and certain other maritime tracts, were included. For the rest of Ahasuerus' "power and his might," the writer is content to refer his readers to "the book of the chronicles of the kings of Media and Persia" (Esther 9:2), which contained also an account of "the greatness of Mordecai, whereto the king advanced him." This greatness forms the sole subject of the concluding verse, which declares Mordecai's position—

(1) with respect to the Persians—"next to the king ;" and,

(2) with respect to the Jews—"great among them," "accepted," and their protector and benefactor, "seeking their wealth," or welfare, and "speaking peace," or insuring tranquillity, to all the whole race or people.

Esther 10:1

King Ahasuerus laid a tribute on the land. Darius, the son of Hystaspes, was the first to do this (Herod; 3.89); but, as the tribute had to be rearranged from time to time (ibid; 6.42), any subsequent Persian monarch who made a fresh arrangement might be said to "lay a tribute on the land." Xerxes is not unlikely to have done so after his return from Greece, as he had lost portions of his territories. And on the islands of the sea. The Hebrew expression translated by "islands of the sea" includes maritime tracts. Xerxes by the Greek expedition lost the islands of the AEgean, but still held certain tracts upon the coast of Europe, which were occupied for a considerable time by Persian garrisons. These would necessarily be included in any assessment that he may have made, and it is even not unlikely that Xerxes would lay his assessment on the AEgean islands, though he might not be able to collect it.

Esther 10:2

All the acts of his power and of his might. These are unknown to us. After the failure of the Grecian expedition Xerxes attempted nothing further on that side of his empire, and the Greeks consequently record nothing more concerning him. He may have made expeditions in other directions. But the chief evidences that we have of his activity point to his having sought to gratify his ambition and give vent to his .grand ideas by erecting magnificent buildings. The book of the chronicles. See Esther 2:23; Esther 6:1; Esther 9:32. The kings of Media and Persia. It is indicative of the intimate connection of the two Iranian empires that one "book" contained the records of both. The fact of the connection is fully established by profane history. Its exact nature is not perhaps even yet fully understood. "Media" seems to be placed before "Persia" in this place on chronological grounds, because the Median history preceded the Persian history, and was therefore recorded first in the "book."

Esther 10:3

Next unto king Ahasuerus. Compare Genesis 41:40; Daniel 5:7; Daniel 6:3. Profane history neither confirms this nor contradicts it. We know almost nothing of Xerxes from profane sources after his return to Susa in B.C. 479. Accepted of. Or, "beloved by." The wealth of his people. i.e. their welfare. Speaking peace to all his seed. It is generally allowed that by "his seed", we must understand those of the same stock with himself—"the seed of Israel." "Speaking peace" to them seems to mean "promoting their peace and safety"—insuring them, so long as he lived and ruled, a quiet and peaceful existence.

HOMILETICS

Esther 10:1

A king's tribute and power.

Ahasuerus is certainly not brought before us in this book as a model king. He was careless of the lives of his subjects, indifferent to justice, callous to suffering, capricious in his likings, and fond of his own pleasure and ease. If Xerxes be the Ahasuerus of this book, it would be hard to light in history upon a character less worthy of respect. Yet he was, if not a great king, king of a great empire—an embodiment of the idea of sovereignty and monarchy.

I. Observe THE CHARACTER OF HIS DOMINION. He levied taxes upon the land and upon the isles of the sea. He exercised power and might over his subjects. He was responsible to no earthly authority.

II. Observe THE EXTENT OF HIS DOMINION. Not only in this verse, but throughout the book, the vastness of the Persian empire and the might of the Persian sceptre appear as a great fact in the world's history.

III. Observe THE LIMITS OF HIS POWER. The Most High ruled, as he ever does rule, and turned the heart of the subject king as he would. We feel that the moving power in the great transaction was Divine. Man rules, but God overrules.

IV. THE POWER OF AHASUERUS SUGGESTS THE AUTHORITY AND EMPIRE OF GOD HIMSELF. Not only by similitude, but also by contrast. This earthly king was defeated by the Greeks, despised by his subjects, assassinated by his servants, and his kingdom passed away to be no more seen. But "the Lord reigneth." "His dominion is an everlasting dominion." "Of his glory there is no end." He demands the submission of our will and the tribute of our praise.

Esther 9:4; Esther 10:2

The greatness of Mordecai.

Before taking leave of this interesting and typical character, it may be well to review the elements of the greatness which, in these two passages, is so glowingly ascribed to him. Mordecai's greatness was—

1. A contrast to his former humiliation at the door of the palace,

2. A contrast to the ignominious death for which at one time he seemed destined,

3. A state for which his past sufferings and patience had probably, in a measure, prepared him.

4. Directly occasioned by his act of loyalty and faithfulness,

5. Occasioned by the discovery of Haman his enemy's malice,

6. Concerted with the royalty of his relative, Esther.

7. The direct bestowment of the king, Ahasuerus.

8. Manifest in the palace,

9. Extending to all the provinces of the vast empire, where his fame was known and his power was felt.

10. Progressive, for he became greater and greater,

11. Exercised for the public good; in this respect a signal contrast to him he replaced,

12. Recorded in the chronicles of the Persian kingdom for the information of future generations,

13. Recorded and sanctified in a book of canonical Scripture for the instruction and encouragement of fidelity and piety throughout all time.

14. Permanently commemorated in the interesting Jewish festival of Purim.

Esther 10:3

The wealth and peace of a people the patriot's aim.

It is a fine description of the aim of Mordecai's public life with which this book closes. What more could be said of the patriotic statesman in any kingdom than this: that he was ever found "seeking the wealth of his people, and speaking peace to all his seed"?

I. WEALTH. Under this we include not simply riches, but welfare in every sense: prosperity, security, progress, happiness—all that can truly enrich and bless a nation. Patriotism, observe, has regard to the people. It is no special class or interest that the true patriot seeks to benefit, but all his countrymen. Now, whilst this virtue does not take so wide a range as philanthropy, it is, like philanthropy, opposed to self-seeking. It is an expansive, liberal, generous, and withal practical attitude of mind. And this end is sought by personal effort, by the exercise of wisdom in the choice of means, and by diligence in their use.

II. PEACE. Under this must be included peace of heart, such as arises from a sense of justice and security of government; social peace, such as prevails where neighbours dwell in amity; political peace, or freedom from civil broils and tumults; general peace, or concord between different races and nations; universal peace, such as is destined, according to prophetic declarations, to pervade the whole earth. All these will be dear to the patriot's heart, and he will use every endeavour to bring about these high and noble ends. Causes of disaffection and disunion and discord he will seek to remove, and he will do all that lies within his power to bring on the reign of righteousness, of liberty, of happiness, of concord. And in his endeavours the Christian patriot will be animated by the love and grace of the Divine Son of man, whose mission it was to bring "peace and good-will to men."

HOMILIES BY W. DINWIDDLE

Esther 10:1-3

Wisdom at the helm.

These concluding verses give a brief and comprehensive view of the results of Mordecai's advancement to power. The influence of the great Jew soon made itself felt to the utmost boundaries of the wide empire.

I. A UNIVERSAL TAXING. The laying of "a tribute on the land and the isles of the sea" may seem very arbitrary, but it was probably in the manner of a notable reform. It is to be attributed to Mordecai, and is given as a special instance of his wisdom and power. Despots have many ways of extracting money from those whom they govern, but the only proper way of supporting government is through just and systematic taxation. If the satraps or governors of provinces send in abundant supplies, shahs and sultans are content; they pay no heed to the manner in which the supplies have been secured. From this cause corruption and oppression still abound in the East. Mordecai adopted a system of direct taxation which embraced the whole empire, and for this he succeeded in getting the king's sanction. Let us remark—

1. That tribute is necessary. Government cannot be efficiently maintained without adequate support; it is worth paying for.

2. Tribute should only be raised for necessary purposes; not for selfish indulgences or vainglorious conquests, but for the legitimate needs of the state.

3. Tribute should be equitable in its incidence. It should be borne by all, but at the same time it should exhibit a just regard to the varying conditions and abilities of citizens.

4. Tribute should be levied openly, and only through legally-appointed channels. Otherwise injustice and corruption are encouraged.

5. Tribute is most satisfactory when estimated and determined by a people themselves through appointed representatives. Self-government and self-taxation are in all respects better than an irresponsible despotism.

6. Tribute when just or necessary should always be cheerfully given. We have a duty to our rulers. The protection, freedom, and peace secured to us by a good government are cheaply purchased by a taxation that is equally levied on all.

7. Tribute is due to the heavenly King as well as to earthly monarchs and states. Whilst rendering to Caesar what is Caesar's, we should be careful to render to God what is God's (Matthew 22:21).

II. OTHER ACTS OF WISDOM AND GREATNESS. These are only noted, not described They were many and illustrious. But though our narrative passes by these acts with a simple allusion to them, it refers us for detailed and complete information to a good authority—"are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Media and Persia?" No doubt the writer thought that archives of the great empire would outlive his little story.. But where now are they? Where is the empire itself? Where are other empires, greater and more brilliant, that succeeded it as the dominant world-power? All vanished, and their records with them! The only chronicle preserved of Mordecai's doings is that given in the Book of Esther, and its preservation is owing to its having been bound up with the word of God to men. Let us learn—

1. The evanescent character of all worldly things.

2. The indestructibility of God's truth and kingdom (Matthew 5:18; 1 Peter 1:24, 1 Peter 1:25).

III. A PLEASANT RECOGNITION OF HONEST AND HONOURABLE GREATNESS. Mordecai was powerful not only with the king and his heathen subjects, but with "the multitude of his own brethren" throughout the empire. His power, however, was not forced, or grudgingly acknowledged. He was "great among the Jews" because he was "accepted of," or acceptable to them. All power that relies on force and exacts an unwilling submission is bad and precarious; that power only is legitimate and secure which is based on the confidence and affection of a willing people. Mordecai's acceptableness with his brethren of Israel sprang from two things:—

1. He sought their wealth. In other words, he studied their prosperity. All the laws of the empire were so framed as to secure their freedom of industry and commercial intercourse.

2. He spoke peace to them. His acts had the effect of delivering them from the fear of their enemies. He held over them the shield of the king's protection, and enabled them to live and work in quiet contentedness. We have here an emblematic picture of Christ's kingdom. Prosperity and peace are the two great blessings promised to the people of Zion (Psalms 122:6, Psalms 122:7). "Quietness and assurance for ever" is "the effect of righteousness" (Isaiah 32:17, Isaiah 32:18). Christ is the "King of glory" and the "Prince of peace." "The good Shepherd" watches, defends, guides, and feeds his sheep; he makes them "lie down in green pastures," and leads them "beside the still waters" (Psalms 23:2).—D.

HOMILIES BY P.C. BARKER

Esther 10:3

The beneficent statesman.

It is reserved for the very last sentences of this book to give to one of the chiefest of its characters, perhaps the chiefest, the place and testimony he had well earned. For a time these seemed withheld, and both the name of Mordecai and himself also seemed kept somewhat unduly in the background. But when we come to the end, it looks rather as though all the book had been in deep reality about him, and as though all had hinged on him. We are left at the close of the book with our last impressions as of him, and he is placed before us under a very strong light. There is no doubt much of the patriot in the portrait we have of Mordecai. But the honourable summary of this verse reminds us that he had passed the mere politician and patriot. He has won for himself the name of the great and the good statesman. He is "next to Ahasuerus;" and what he did and what he was affected not the Jews only, but the whole empire—all of the various and wide dominion of the king. He is stamped on the sacred page as the type of A BENEFICENT STATESMAN. There have been not a few who have extorted from their own day and generation the title of great statesmen, but the claim has not survived them long.. The number of the really beneficent statesmen is much smaller, but their renown is for ever. In the amazing wealth and variety of Scripture lesson for every need of human life, and of Scripture model for every office of authority and influence in human society, this of the honest and beneficent statesman is not overlooked. Neither must we overlook it, nor omit to notice, as afresh suggested by it, how intrinsic an argument is herein given us for the Divine inspiration of the Bible. Whence but from such an original could have come to us so many, so perfect models? It is doubly important that we should remark how ample a share of these the Book of Esther contains—evidences of inspiration of the highest kind and value. The brief summary of this verse is the more impressive as coming at the very end of the book. But passing by all other suggestions, it speaks of a certain greatness, and a greatness evidently of very comprehensive character. It is the greatness of an emphatically good statesman. Let us take the opportunity suggested by a leading instance of considering—

I. THE STATESMAN'S OFFICE.

1. It is the expression of government. If man were only gregarious, he would need, and undoubtedly be subjected to. government. ALL living things are subject to government, need it, and are rapidly being brought under the rule of man, according to the charter originally given to man.

2. It is the expression of order. Man is emphatically not merely gregarious; he is social. The variety of his sympathies and antipathies is very large, and their range amazing. So much so, that the saying, "The chiefest study of mankind is man," might, if reversed, express to perfection a great truth for some, and read, "The chiefest study of man is mankind."

3. It is the expression of concentrated purpose, of intelligent, united advance. The highest and most beneficent results of SOCIETY would without it he unattainable by the human species. Development of society is always tending toward higher developments of government. And the beneficial reaction is sometimes abundantly evident. Again, the higher-developed form of government is always tending to render possible higher social results.

4. It is in some degree the expression of morality and religion. Where the religious sense is lowest, then it is lowest, and vice versa It has been well said that "the organisation of every human community indicates some sense of a Divine presence, some consciousness of a higher law, some pressure of a solemn necessity." Government (and therefore the chief personage of government) is the outcome of the most elementary necessities of humanity in some of the very highest aspects of that same humanity. From the very first this was testified; and through exceedingly various forms, lower and higher in type, the principle has ever held its ground, and still excites attention and interest second to not one of the profoundest problems.

II. SOME OF THE GENERAL REQUISITES FOR IT.

1. A certain passion for humanity as considered in large masses.

2. A natural gift for discerning the genius of a people.

3. Natural qualifications for exercising rule.

(1) Sympathy strong.

(2) Justice clear and inviolable.

(3) Authority, often indefinable in its elements, but evidencing its own existence conclusively.

(4) Temper and moderation.

4. Carefully-trained ability to calculate the effects of certain legislative treatment on Whole communities of people, and on their mutual adjustments.

5. Favourableness of position, as marked out by Providence.

III. SOME OF THE MORE SPECIALLY MORAL AND BENEFICENT REQUISITES OF IT.

1. The "greatness" which it inevitably marks will he, as far as possible, free from the taint of personal ambition. Surely there was a minimum of this in Mordecai, as there was a loathsome maximum of it in Haman. The very way in which high position is attained will be a happy omen, or the reverse.

2. Its "greatness" will partake largely of the moral element.

(1) It will have ready for the hour of special need of it an inflexible moral courage. What an illustration of this Mordecai gave before he attained high office, and when he would not bow to wrong, and, when wrong became more wrong, still refused to "move," though dread punishment overhung.

(2) The natural temper and gift of authority will more and more become transmuted into moral authority, and become superseded by moral influence. Express mention is made of this in the career of Mordecai. "The fear of him," of the moral power that was behind him, spread over enemy and grew comfortingly in friend.

3. Its greatness will lay itself out in practical devotion to the interests of the crowded multitude. Mordecai "sought the wealth of his people," and it made him "accepted of the multitude of his brethren."

4. Its greatness will speak the things of peace. Special emphasis is laid on the fact that Mordecai "spoke peace to all his seed." The statesman is not to seek to give the impression of caste. He is not to flourish upon war or strife. He is not to propagate the methods and the ideas of the high-handed, but all the contrary. Like the spiritual teacher, he also must not "cry, Peace, peace, when there is no peace;" but he is to make peace as far as may be possible by breathing peace upon all.

IV. SOME OF ITS REWARD. Beside all such as he will have in common with every obscurest fellow-man who is faithful, in the satisfaction of fulfilling duty, in peace of conscience, and in a persuasion of Divine approval, he may reckon upon—

1. The joy of seeing a prospered community, due in some part to his work.

2. The gratitude of a discerning people growing round his accumulating years.

3. An honourable, enduring place on the best of the pages of history.—B.

HOMILIES BY F. HASTINGS

Esther 10:3

A life summed up.

"For Mordecai the Jew was next unto king Ahasuerus, and great." Gather from Mordecai's history something to stimulate our spirits in the baffle of life.

I. We might remark upon THE WAY IN WHICH HE EARNED HIS ELEVATION. Perhaps as a Jew, he was a little revengeful towards aliens; but he filled well a lowly position, and so was prepared better for a higher. Shall we desire rather to reap rewards than to sow the seed which will produce them?

II. Gather stimulus from THE WAY IN WHICH HE PERFORMED HIS DUTY AND KEPT HIS INTEGRITY. In this he felt that he was already rewarded. And shall we not learn to be patient? Our impatience is our great hindrance. We do not wait, trusting in God, as Mordecai. Yet "he knoweth the way that we take," and in his own time will bring us forth when sufficiently tested.

III. Gather lessons from the fact that HIS PROSPERITY WAS MATERIALLY AIDED BY HIS FAITH AND PRAYER. By his words to Esther we are sure he looked to God for deliverance. When the deliverance came it involved his prosperity as well as that of his people, just as a stranded vessel, when again floating, carries forward not only the captain, but any passengers on board. Mordecai firmly believed that, even though Esther held her peace, "enlargement and deliverance would arise to the Jews from some other place." We can pray to be made faithful, holy, earnest, and in due time the reward will come. It will then be in a sense the result of prayer.

IV. Gather encouragement in seeing HOW HIS ELEVATION CAME WHEN HIS HOPES WERE AT THE LOWEST EBB. See on what a trifle they turned. And thus it is constantly seen in life. Be prepared to seize the trifles, and remember that the darkest night oft ushers in the brightest morning.

V. Gather also instruction in seeing HOW HIS ELEVATION WAS APPROVED BY HIS FELLOW-MEN. We are told he was "accepted of the multitude of his brethren." There was little envy at his rise, because there was much humility in the man. So there are men in whose prosperity we may delight, because, instead of being puffed up, or becoming purse-proud, they maintain their former humility, and practise greater liberality.

VI. Gather guidance from THE WAY IN WHICH MORDECAI USED HIS ELEVATION FOR THE BEST PURPOSES. He sought the welfare of his people, and spoke "peace to all his seed." Not only so, but there is a tradition that many of the Persians, and even the king, believed in God through him. Let us then go through life seeking opportunities to do good, and using those we find. Let us make the motto of Cromwell ours, not only to strike while the iron is hot, "but to make it hot by striking." As Christians, let us seek the welfare and eternal peace of others. We rust, we freeze when we live only for ourselves. We should be like the stream spoken of in a fable, "too active to freeze." "The mill-stream went dashing along, so that the frost could not seize and bind it. The traveller over the Alps in winter was so earnest in striving to save his brother, overcome by cold, that he was himself kept alive by the attempt." Remember that, after all, Mordecai's elevation was but a type of the heavenly honour and glory which awaits all those faithful in spiritual things. The "declaration of his glory" was written side by side with that of the king. He died full of years and of honour. That God who had been his guide in life was his refuge in death. When ushered into heaven, he doubtless felt that he had been, at best, an unprofitable servant. Still, God gave him, doubtless, in that world a position far more elevated, far more lasting, far more satisfactory than that which he, the whilom neglected deliverer, occupied as the prime minister of the Persian king. ― H.

HOMILIES BY D. ROWLANDS

Esther 10:3

Moral work.

Integrity must prosper sooner or later. Were it not so, we should lose faith in eternal righteousness. Appearances may be unfavourable for a time, wrong, sorrow, suffering may precede, but either here or hereafter a distinction will most assuredly be made between the true and the false. Joseph, though consigned to prison, was subsequently raised to power; Daniel, though cast into the lions' den, eventually sat with princes; Mordecai, though threatened with death, finally became "next unto king Ahasuerns." It is said that Mordecai was "great." What does greatness consist in?

1. Physical endowments. Strength, skill, courage are among these. The athlete, the warrior, the hunter were heroes in ancient times. The deeds of Hercules, Samson, Goliath were celebrated in song.

2. Mental powers. Genius is everywhere admired. Its mighty works are the most precious inheritances of our race. In literature, in science, in art, in the numberless inventions of civilised life, it continues to bless the world.

3. Exalted position. This may be due to mere accident. Kings, princes, noblemen are as a rule born to their high rank. When such is the case they deserve no credit for it. High places are sometimes snatched by the unscrupulous—by men who have no better recommendation than their audacity in the universal scramble for power which goes on round about us. There is no meanness that some will not stoop to, for the sake of the glittering honours of office, or even those petty distinctions which noble minds hold in utter contempt. But distinguished stations are also the rewards of physical endowments and mental powers honourably employed. Then are they to be coveted, to be held in high esteem. The case of Mordecai is a noted example. The text leads us to notice THE TESTS OF MORAL WORTH. Speaking generally, these are 'numerous; but we shall confine ourselves to those suggested here—popularity, unselfishness, peaceableness. Whom shall we consider morally great?

I. THE MAN WHO STANDS WELL WITH THE BEST PORTION OF THE COMMUNITY. "And accepted of the multitude of his brethren." Popularity as such has no intrinsic value, and to seek it for its own sake is degrading to the soul. Let any thoughtful man, while contemplating the quality of the exhibition that attracts the largest crowd, ask himself whether the admiration of such a crowd is really worth obtaining, and his inmost soul will answer, No. Crowds have been so often on the wrong side in great controversies that they have actually lost all claim to respect. They have generally applauded unjust wars; they have persecuted the pioneers of knowledge, both secular and religious; they acquiesced in the death of the Saviour. And yet, though the crowds of one age murder the prophets, the crowds of future ages will always build their sepulchres. History ever does justice to the memory of the martyr, and even he becomes popular when too late. But the Jews in captivity, the "brethren" of Mordecai, were a select community. They possessed a knowledge of things Divine which placed them on an incomparably higher level than the heathen among whom they lived. To be accepted of them, therefore, was a mark of worth. "The multitude of his brethren." A man may be the favourite of a party simply for party considerations. But when the upright among all parties agree to honour him, it must be on account of sterling qualities.

II. THE MAN WHO DEVOTES HIMSELF TO PROMOTE THE GOOD OF OTHERS. "Seeking the wealth of his people." Self-sacrifice was the Divinest quality in the Divinest Man. "The Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many." Into the kingdom which he came to establish no man can enter without denying himself, taking up his cross, and following him. Fallen man is essentially selfish. Look around you for a single moment, and the proofs of this will crowd upon your view. Most of the evils with which man afflicts his kind are traceable to this source. But look at the grand lives of history—lives which light up the gloom of sin and woe in which the world is enveloped—and what constitutes their glory? They are grand only in so far as they approach the sublime ideal which was fully realised only by One. Take the Apostle Paul. His memorable utterance to the Corinthians was the key-note of his entire life: "I will very gladly spend and be spent for you; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved."

III. THE MAN WHO EXERTS HIS INFLUENCE IN THE INTEREST OF PEACE. "And speaking peace to all his seed." The primary reference in these words is probably to the kindness of Mordecai's disposition, but they are capable of a somewhat wider application, so as to include the desire of maintaining harmony, order, peace. It has been said of mankind, with too much reason, that their "state of nature is a state of war." Sin divides men. In private life, in public affairs, in international relations, this is seen daily. Envy, rivalry, strife are found everywhere. Such is the state of things even in this enlightened age, that no nation feels itself safe except it be prepared for the most deadly struggle with its neighbour. The advocate of peace is consequently a benefactor of his kind. The kingdom of God is "peace." The birth of its Founder was heralded by angels who sang of "peace on earth." The most precious legacy which Christ left his people was his "peace." And among the grand utterances of the grandest sermon is found this: "Blessed are the peace-makers, for they shall be called the children of God."—R.

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Bibliographical Information
Exell, Joseph S; Spence-Jones, Henry Donald Maurice. "Commentary on Esther 10". The Pulpit Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/tpc/esther-10.html. 1897.