Fasting can bring us Mercy and Favor

In the book of Esther we see a plot to kill all of the Jews. A man called Haman had been promoted by the King of the land and was given a place of high authority. The King had made a command that all of his servants were to bow down and pay respect to Haman.

Mordecai refused to bow down to Haman. When asked why he would not, he told them that he was a Jew. When Haman heard of this he became very angry and made a decree to kill all the Jews in the land and take their possessions.

When Mordecai and the Jewish people heard of this decree they begin fasting and crying out. Mordecai went down to the King’s gate in sackcloth and ashes.

3 And in every province, whithersoever the king’s commandment and his decree came, there was great mourning among the Jews, and fasting, and weeping, and wailing; and many lay in sackcloth and ashes. (Esther 4:3)

Esther who was Queen of the land was told of this decree and she was in great anguish. What Esther was about to do could end in her death if the King did not receive her. Esther’s plan was to go to the King and Haman and have the King overturn this decree. After relaying and receiving messages from Mordecai she told Mordecai and all the Jews to fast for her.

16 Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan, and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night or day: I also and my maidens will fast in like manner; and so will I go in unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish. (Esther 4:16)

When all was said and done, Mordecai was honored by the King in front of all the people and Haman was hung on the same gallows that he had prepared for Mordecai.

In this story we see that fasting came about in a time of crisis where all of the Jews were to be killed. We don’t see any mention of this crisis coming about as a direct relation to the people’s sin as we seen in the fasting of Nehemiah. However, we do see that the Jewish people needed Mercy and Favor from the King. In Esther 4:3 we can see that Mordecai began to fast and cry out to receive mercy for him and his people. In Esther 4:16, Esther called out to the Jews to fast for her so that she could obtain favor with the King.

About the Author:
Dwayne McLean is the editor, publisher and author of various Christian Articles on the People Get Ready website.

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