"Coincidences" in Esther

06 Nov 2021 11:04 AM | Josh Hunt (Administrator)

Here are some of those “coincidences” or “stuff” Dever says “just seems to happen” in Esther:

  • Esther just happens to be Jewish, and she just happens to be beautiful.
  • Esther just happens to be favored by the king.
  • Mordecai just happens to overhear the plot against the king’s life.
  • A report of this just happens to be written in the king’s chronicles.
  • Haman just happens to notice that Mordecai does not kneel down before him, and he just happens to find out that Mordecai is a Jew.
  • When Haman plots his revenge, the dice just happen to indicate that the date for exacting revenge is put off for almost a year! (What does Prov 16:33 say? “The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the LORD.”)
  • Esther just happens to get the king’s approval to speak, but then she happens to put off her request for another day.
  • Her deferral just happens to send Haman out by Mordecai one more time, …
  • … which just happens to cause him to recount it to his friends.
  • They, in turn, just happen to encourage him to build a scaffold immediately!
  • So Haman just happens to be excited to approach the king early the next morning.
  • It just so happens that the previous night, the mighty king could not command a moment’s sleep, …
  • … and he just happened to have had a book brought to him that recounted Mordecai’s deed.
  • He then happened to ask whether Mordecai had been rewarded, to which his attendants happened to know the answer. Simply consider for a moment the fact that Mordecai happened not to have been rewarded for having saved the king’s life. How unusual this must have been! Someone who saved the king’s life never rewarded? I wonder if Mordecai ever chafed under that: “Doesn’t he realize what I did for him?” Well, it all just happened.
  • Haman happens to approach the king just when the king is wondering how Mordecai should be honored.
  • Later on the king happens to return to the queen just when Haman happens to be pleading with Esther in a way that can be misconstrued.
  • The gallows Haman built for Mordecai just happens to be ready when King Xerxes wants to hang Haman (Dever, The Message of the Old Testament, 455–56; emphasis original).

All of these “coincidences” show that the events in Esther are not determined by chance but by control, not by luck but by the Lord. To see it any other way is dangerous. — Landon Dowden, Exalting Jesus in Esther (Nashville, TN: Holman Reference, 2019).

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