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                      "EXPATRIATE EXTRAORDINAIRE"

                              Esther 2:5-7


1. A much loved story in the Bible is that of Esther (Hadassa)...
   a. A young beautiful Jewish girl who becomes Queen of Persia - Es
   b. Who at great risk to her life intercedes for and saves her people
      - Es 4:15-16
   -- Which led to the establishment of the days of Purim for the Jews
      - Es 9:26-32

2. Integral to the story of Esther is the involvement of Mordecai the
   a. The first cousin of Esther, who also lived in Shushan of Persia
      - Es 2:5-7
   b. Whose greatness is described in the last verse - Es 10:3
   -- In fact, the Feast of Purim is called "the day of Mordecai" in
      2 Mac 15:36

[Mordecai was truly an "Expatriate Extraordinaire".  As such, he
provides an example in many respects for Christians today...]


      1. Expatriate - One who has taken up residence in a foreign
      2. His great-grandfather Kish had been taken away into Babylonian
         captivity - Es 2:5-6
      3. The Jews had begun to return to Jerusalem nearly fifty years
         earlier - cf. Ezr 1:1-5
      -- Mordecai, like many other Jews, remained in the country of

      1. Extraordinaire - Extraordinary; beyond what is ordinary or
         usual; highly unusual or exceptional; remarkable
      2. He raised his orphan cousin Esther - Es 2:7
      3. He served as her mentor and protector - Es 2:10-11,20
      4. He displayed patriotic loyalty by saving the king from
         assassination - Es 2:21-23
      5. He refused to give Haman homage due only to God - Es 3:1-4
         a. The Jews all think that Mordecai refused this prostration
            because it implied idolatrous adoration. - Clarke
         b. Hence, in the Apocryphal additions to this book, Mordecai is
            represented praying thus: "Thou knowest that if I have not
            adored Haman, it was not through pride, nor contempt, nor
            secret desire of glory; for I felt disposed to kiss the
            footsteps of his feet (gladly) for the salvation of Israel:
            but I feared to give to a man that honor which I know
            belongs only to my God." - ibid.
      6. He did what he could to save his people, the Jews
         a. Tearing his clothes, mourning in sackcloth and ashes before
            the king's gate - Es 4:1-2
         b. Sending word to Esther that she must be willing to risk her
            own life - Es 4:13-14
         c. Heeding her plea for him and all the Jews to fast and pray
            for her - Es 4:15-17
      7. Together with Esther he wrote a decree that countered the one
         by Haman - Es 8:7-12
      8. He wrote the letters establishing the Feast of Purim for the
         Jews - Es 9:20-28
      -- Mordecai was truly an extraordinary person, his greatness
         extolled in the book of Esther - cf. Es 9:4; 10:2-3

[With the example of Mordecai fresh on our minds, what parallels or
applications might we draw related to our service as Christians...?]


      1. Like the Jews in exile, we are 'pilgrims of the Dispersion'
         - 1Pe 1:1
      2. We are 'sojourners and pilgrims' in this world - 1Pe 2:11
      3. Our citizenship is in heaven - Php 3:20
      -- During our earthly sojourn, we are truly expatriates, residing
         in a world not our own

      1. With honorable conduct among the Gentiles - 1Pe 2:12
      2. Children of God without fault, shining as lights in the world
         - Php 2:14-15
      3. Practicing pure religion, as did Mordecai raising Esther - cf.
         Jm 1:27
      4. Encouraging one another to do what's right, as Mordecai
         exhorted Esther - cf. He 3:12-14
      5. Fulfilling our duties to the governments in which we live
         a. Obeying the laws, paying taxes, showing respect - Ro 13:1-7;
            1Pe 2:13-17
         b. Praying for those in authority - 1Ti 2:1-2
      6. Obeying God rather than man, should there be a conflict - Ac
      7. Devoted to the people of God, the church, as Mordecai was to
         the Jews - 1Th 4:9-10
      -- Such conduct would certainly be extraordinary; beyond what is
         ordinary or usual; highly unusual or exceptional; remarkable


1. Do you know anyone like that...?
   a. How about the apostle Paul?  Other faithful Christians in the New
   b. How about faithful Christians today?
   -- If so, mark them well and follow their example - Php 3:17

2. Add to your role models other Old Testament examples...
   a. Men like Joseph, Moses, Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego
   b. Women like Ruth, and of course Esther
   -- Who histories were written for our learning - cf. Ro 15:4

These were "expatriates extraordinaires" like Mordecai. So we can be, if
we follow in their footsteps of faith fighting against our enemy (Satan,
not Haman).  Are you willing to accept the challenge...?

   "...Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a
   time as this?" - Es 4:14b
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