The Jews Destroy Their Enemies
9 sNow in the twelfth month, which is the month of Adar, ton the thirteenth day of the same, uwhen the king's command and edict were about to be carried out, jon the very day when the enemies of the Jews hoped to gain the mastery over them, the reverse occurred: the Jews gained mastery over those who hated them. 2 vThe Jews gathered in their cities throughout all the provinces of King Ahasuerus to lay hands on those who sought their harm. And no one could stand against them, wfor the fear of them had fallen on all peoples. 3 All the officials of the provinces and xthe satraps and the governors and the royal agents also helped the Jews, for the fear of Mordecai had fallen on them. 4 For Mordecai was great in the king's house, and his fame spread throughout all the provinces, for the man Mordecai grew ymore and more powerful. 5 The Jews struck all their enemies with the sword, killing and destroying them, and did as they pleased to those who hated them. 6 In Susa the citadel itself the Jews killed and destroyed 500 men, 7 and also killed Parshandatha and Dalphon and Aspatha 8 and Poratha and Adalia and Aridatha 9 and Parmashta and Arisai and Aridai and Vaizatha, 10 zthe ten sons of Haman the son of Hammedatha, athe enemy of the Jews, bbut they laid no hand on the plunder.
11 That very day the number of those killed in Susa the citadel was reported to the king. 12 And the king said to Queen Esther, “In Susa the citadel the Jews have killed and destroyed 500 men and also the ten sons of Haman. What then have they done in the rest of the king's provinces! cNow what is your wish? It shall be granted you. And what further is your request? It shall be fulfilled.” 13 And Esther said, “If it please the king, let the Jews who are in Susa be allowed dtomorrow also to do according to this day's edict. And let the ten sons of Haman be hanged on the gallows.”1 14 So the king commanded this to be done. A decree was issued in Susa, and the ten sons of Haman were hanged. 15 The Jews who were in Susa gathered also on the fourteenth day of the month of Adar and they killed 300 men in Susa, but they laid no hands on the plunder.
16 eNow the rest of the Jews who were in the king's provinces also fgathered to defend their lives, and got relief from their enemies and killed 75,000 of those who hated them, but they laid no hands on the plunder. 17 This was gon the thirteenth day of the month of Adar, and on the fourteenth day they rested and made that a day of feasting and gladness. 18 But the Jews who were in Susa gathered gon the thirteenth day and on the fourteenth, and rested hon the fifteenth day, making that a day of feasting and gladness. 19 Therefore the Jews of the villages, who live in ithe rural towns, hold the fourteenth day of the month of Adar as a day for gladness and feasting, as ja holiday, and kas a day on which they send gifts of food to one another.
The Feast of Purim Inaugurated
20 And Mordecai recorded these things and sent letters to all the Jews who were in all the provinces of King Ahasuerus, both near and far, 21 obliging them to keep the fourteenth day of the month Adar and also the fifteenth day of the same, year by year, 22 as the days on which the Jews got relief from their enemies, and as the month that had been turned for them from sorrow into gladness and from mourning into ja holiday; that they should make them days of feasting and gladness, days for sending gifts of food to one another and gifts to the poor.
23 So the Jews accepted what they had started to do, and what Mordecai had written to them. 24 For Haman the Agagite, the son of Hammedatha, lthe enemy of all the Jews, mhad plotted against the Jews to destroy them, and nhad cast Pur (that is, cast lots), to crush and to destroy them. 25 But when it came before the king, he gave orders in writing othat his evil plan that he had devised against the Jews pshould return on his own head, and that he and his sons should be hanged on the gallows. 26 Therefore they called these days Purim, after the term nPur. Therefore, because of all that was written in qthis letter, and of what they had faced in this matter, and of what had happened to them, 27 the Jews firmly obligated themselves and their offspring and rall who joined them, that without fail they would keep sthese two days according to what was written and at the time appointed every year, 28 that these days should be remembered and kept throughout every generation, in every clan, province, and city, and that these days of Purim should never fall into disuse among the Jews, nor should the commemoration of these days cease among their descendants.
29 Then Queen Esther, tthe daughter of Abihail, and Mordecai the Jew gave full written authority, confirming uthis second letter about Purim. 30 Letters were sent to all the Jews, vto the 127 provinces of the kingdom of Ahasuerus, in words of peace and truth, 31 that these days of Purim should be observed at their appointed seasons, as Mordecai the Jew and Queen Esther obligated them, and as they had obligated themselves and their offspring, with regard to wtheir fasts and their lamenting. 32 The command of Esther confirmed these practices of xPurim, and it was recorded in writing.
The Greatness of Mordecai
10 King Ahasuerus imposed tax on the land and on ythe coastlands of the sea. 2 And all the acts of his power and might, and the full account of the high honor of Mordecai, zto which the king advanced him, are they not written in athe Book of the Chronicles of the kings of Media and Persia? 3 For Mordecai the Jew was bsecond in rank to King Ahasuerus, and he was great among the Jews and popular with the multitude of his brothers, for he csought the welfare of his people and spoke peace to all his people.
23 And someone said to him, “Lord, owill those who are saved be few?” And he said to them, 24 p“Strive qto enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able. 25 rWhen once the master of the house has risen and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and to knock at the door, saying, s‘Lord, open to us,’ then he will answer you, t‘I do not know where you come from.’ 26 Then you will begin to say, u‘We ate and drank in your presence, and you taught in our streets.’ 27 But he will say, ‘I tell you, tI do not know where you come from. vDepart from me, all you workers of evil!’ 28 wIn that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you see wAbraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God but wyou yourselves cast out. 29 And wpeople will come from east and west, and from north and south, and xrecline at table in the kingdom of God. 30 And behold, ysome are last who will be first, and some are first who will be last.”
Lament over Jerusalem
31 At that very hour some Pharisees came and said to him, “Get away from zhere, for aHerod wants to kill you.” 32 And he said to them, “Go and tell that fox, ‘Behold, I cast out demons and perform cures today and tomorrow, and the third day bI finish my course. 33 Nevertheless, cI dmust go on my way today and tomorrow and the day following, for it cannot be that ea prophet should perish away from Jerusalem.’ 34 fO Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that gkills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! hHow often would I have igathered jyour children together kas a hen gathers her brood lunder her wings, and myou were not willing! 35 Behold, nyour house is forsaken. And I tell you, you will not see me until you say, o‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!’”