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Esther
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Book of Esther free images and Bible art. Search art and lessons in Esther by verse. Free high resolution images and study resource.

The right of the Book of Esther to be included among the canonical or inspired Scriptures was not granted without serious opposition. Some have objected to the book's lack of religious teaching; others to its uncertain historical character. But among the mass of Jews the book has always been a particularly popular work. It accounts for the origin of one of their feasts, that of Purim, to the observance of which it seeks to encourage the people; and its reading aloud constitutes one of the main features of that occasion.

Its authorship is wholly unknown. It seems by its character to be of comparatively late date, most probably the third century B.C. if not later. The book treats of the fate of the Jews while dwelling in Babylonia under the Persian kings. It tells of a special danger which threatened the race in the days of the king Ahasuerus, and of their deliverance by Esther and Mordecai. Ahasuerus is probably identical with the Xerxes whom the Greeks defeated; and as this monarch's reign extended from B.C. 485 to 465 the events narrated would have occurred during the unrecorded interval of sixty years in the middle of the book of Ezra.

The Greek version of the Bible adds to the story of Esther passages which do not exist in the Hebrew, and have never been part of the Hebrew canon. Hence these passages are not included in modern Protestant Bibles, though they are accepted by the Catholic Church along with the other apocryphal books. The passages add much to the religious tone of the story.

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 Esther Denouncing Haman, Esther 7:1-7
Esther Denouncing Haman, Ernest Normand c. 1915
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Esther Chapter 1
The royal feast of Ahasuerus 1-9. Vashti's refusal to appear, the king's decree 10-22.
Esther Chapter 2
Esther chosen queen 1-20. Mordecai discovers a plot against the king 21-23.
Esther Chapter 3
Haman seeks to destroy the Jews 1-6. He obtains a decree against the Jews 7-15.
Esther Chapter 4
The Jews lament their danger 1-4. Esther undertakes to plead for the Jews 5-17.
Esther Chapter 5
Esther's application received 1-8. Haman prepares to hang Mordecai 9-14.
Esther Chapter 6
Providence recommends Mordecai to the king's favor 1-3. Haman's counsel honors Mordecai 4-11. Haman's friends tell him of his danger 12-14.
Esther Chapter 7
Esther accuses Haman 1-6. Haman hanged on his own gallows 7-10.
Esther Chapter 8
Mordecai is advanced 1,2. Esther makes suit for the Jews 3-14. Mordecai honored, the joy of the Jews 15-17.
Esther Chapter 9
The success of the Jews 1-19. The feast of Purim in remembrance of this 20-32.
Esther Chapter 10
Greatness of Ahasuerus-Mordecai's advancement.

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