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Purim: Year 3404, 356 Years Before The Common Era

From the Exodus through the destruction of the First Temple, Mankind witnesses genuine and public miracles and prophecy. G-d‘s presence and management was relatively obvious.

[Mordechai & Haman]The Purim story introduces a new period. It takes place during the exile, shortly before the construction of the Second Temple. The story is documented in the Book of Esther and it contains no open miracles. Throughout the entire text, the name of G-d is not mentioned even once. Careful analysis of this dramatic story reveals an awesome demonstration of G-d's management of worldly affairs in concealed manner. The Persian/Median Empire is manipulated by G-d to test, stress, relieve, and then restore a degree of dignity to the Jewish people.

Evil as personified by Haman tries to block the construction of the Second Temple, achieve control of the Empire, and destroy the Jewish people, thus frustrating the plan of Creation. Haman is a descendent of Amalek.

Events come to pass in such a way that Haman himself plays a crucial role in the coronation of Queen Esther. No one realizes that she is Jewish. Haman then succeeds in authorizing a royal decree to annihilate a unspecified nation who is an enemy to the Crown. He does not initially identify the nation so that the King can later claim that he didn’t know that the decree was against the Jews.

Mordechai leads the Jews in prayer and return to G-d.

We then find Haman working through the night to construct gallows upon which to hang Mordechai. At daybreak, he appears before the King to denounce Mordechai. Unknown to Haman, the King had not slept the night before, suspecting a coup led by Haman. In desperation to get some sleep, he had asked his servants to read from the Royal Chronicles. They opened up to a long forgotten story of Mordechai who discovered an assassination plot against the King. Haman appears at the moment that this desperate King is inquiring whether Mordechai was rewarded for his loyalty. Before getting a chance to make his request, Haman is commissioned by the King to parade Mordechai through the capital city in the royal garments. Afterwards, Haman is whisked to a Royal banquet, hosted by Esther. At the banquet she reveals to the King that she is Jewish and that Haman is an enemy of the Crown because he seeks to destroy the Jewish people. The embarrassed King storms out of the room. Haman pleads to Esther for his life. He ‘somehow’ loses his balance and falls on the couch where Esther is reclining. The King comes back at just this moment. He blows up. On the spot, a royal minister tells the King about the gallows Haman constructed for Mordechai, who saved the King’s life. Haman is dead.

Esther becomes mother to the Emperor Darius who later authorizes the construction of the Second Temple. In retrospect, Haman has a major role in this construction. Too bad he doesn’t enjoy it.

Throughout the entire story, G-d maintains total control of the flow of events and remains completely hidden in the background.

There will be no more prophets; The Jewish people will be plunged into a deep exile for the next twenty-three hundred (plus) years.

As astonished as the world was during the Exodus when G-d’s management was obvious, all of Mankind will be even more astonished when it realizes G-d’s ability to manage in the background and manipulate evil. This will be part of the Messianic experience and it will usher in the completion of creation.

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Illustration: Mordechai paraded through the streets. Horse led by Haman.

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