1. We started on Sunday by thinking back on the book as a whole & specifically chapter 4 with Esther.
Q: When thinking about why Esther initially refused Mordecai’s request to act, it was said that her response was one based in PRAGMATISM. Pragmatism was defined as “doing what works best to get what you desire.” What are examples of pragmatism that you’ve seen from your experiences?
Q: The main issues with pragmatism stem from its goals & means. The goal is centered around the self & the means on what works rather than what’s right. How can this kind of thinking creep into the life of a church?
2. After reading Esther 9:1-17, we considered what was said in v. 1-4.
Q: The writer of Esther is succinct in saying, “The reverse occurred” in speaking of the apex of this story. How has the reversal given you a new perspective & confidence to place your hope in God?
Q: We also see that Mordecai has received power & prestige in these verses. Even though our levels of authority, power & prestige vary…we all have influence in one way or another, how can you use yours to glorify God? What comes to mind as an example of using power & prestige for the glory of God?
Q: We even see that fear of the Jews & Mordecai had come, and it was said that this was because they rightly understood the source of their power…in God Himself! What happens when we acknowledge God to the source of any & all good that is found in our lives?
3. Then several observations were made based off Esther 9:5-10.
Q: One of the observations concerned Haman’s son. They followed in their father’s footsteps & that led to their deaths. How does this idea of children following the example of their parents shape your prayers for families? As a parent, what do you hope to train your children to do? If you are past the training up portion of parenthood, what are you thankful you trained your children to do?
Q: Another observation dealt with hatred. It was said that hatred is evil & leads to greater evil. What are examples of this being true?
4. We then read Esther 9:11-17 & asked several questions.
Q: When looking at the transformation of Esther, she goes from timid to bold in this account. What are some ways that God has transformed your life since you became a Christian?
Q: The passage points out several times that the Jews did not take the plunder. This was a reversal of the past (1 Samuel 15). What are ways that you have learned from the past?
Q: The humiliation of Haman’s son shows us what we all deserve on our own. The fact that Christ takes our humiliation & our punishment (Galatians 3:13) is beautiful. How do we express our thankfulness to God for what Christ has done on our behalf?