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So, when this day came,
there in the city of Shushan, there were five hundred men that were slain by the Jews ( Esther 9:6 ).
Men who were seeking the evil of the Jews. And so they were able to take their vengeance upon their enemies, and throughout all the provinces actually there were a great number of people that the Jews actually put to death as they defended themselves. Seventy-five thousand were destroyed.
On the fourteenth day of the same month they rested, and made it a day of feasting and gladness. But the Jews that were at Shushan assembled together on the thirteenth day, and on the fourteenth day, and on the fifteenth day they rested, and made it a day of feasting and gladness. Therefore the Jews of the villages, that dwelt in the unwalled towns, made the fourteenth day of the month of Adar the day of gladness and feasting, and a good day, of sending portions one to another ( Esther 9:17-19 ).
Now, here was then instituted the Feast of Purim. Remember the word Pur? It means lot, and im is like an s. It makes it a plural in Hebrew. And so the Purim means lots. And so the Feast of Purim is actually a feast of lots, because Haman had determined by casting lots which day the Jews would be destroyed. And so, to the present day, on the thirteenth day of March in the Jewish calendar they have a day of, sort of, fasting and all, but then on the fourteenth day in the villages, and on the fifteenth day of March in the city of Jerusalem, the walled city, they celebrate the Feast of Purim to the present day.
Now they've modified the celebrations quite a bit. And the children dress up in costumes much like Halloween costumes. And the little girls will usually dress up like Esther, and some of the boys will dress up like Haman the bad guy, and others, of course, will dress in cowboy outfits and everything else, just like you see kids here at Halloween. Rather than trick-or-treating, they invite their friends over, and as it says here, there was feasting and gladness. They invite their friends over and they have cookies and goodies that they share together. And they have parties much like Halloween parties with the children all in costume, and it is a time of festival and all, in March there in Israel.
We have been over there the last two years during the Feast of Purim and I've seen the little children in their costumes, and they have cookies that they make that they call Haman's ears. And they're good cookies. But they will, a lot of times, have little plays, and the children will play-act the story of Esther and the villain, wicked Haman, and so forth. And they have these plays, and of course, its very colorful and very interesting; the Feast of Purim which was inaugurated here in the book of Esther, and is celebrated to the present day over there in Israel. One day in the villages on the fourteenth, and on the fifteenth within the city of Jerusalem, so it stretches out the holiday a little bit. "
Copyright © 2014, Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa, Ca.
Smith, Charles Ward. "Commentary on Esther 9". "Smith's Bible Commentary". https://studylight.org/
the Fourth Sunday after Epiphany