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The text for this lesson is the Book of Esther

Key Point

  • In the actions of Esther, we see the pattern of deliverance that God sketches throughout the story of Israel, a pattern that finds its fulfillment in Jesus, our Savior.
  • Law: In my sin, I am apathetic and anxious, and I despair in this life.
  • Gospel: No matter how desperate the times or how hidden God and His ways seem to be, the Lord has a plan to save me in Jesus, His Son.

Discussion Points

  1. Have you ever been in a situation that seemed hopeless, as if no matter what you did, the results would hurt somebody, maybe yourself? How did you deal with this situation? How did God work things out?
  2. The story begins with Vashti, the queen, being banished and divorced for her refusal to obey the king’s command. But who is really in the wrong? What are the various ways King Ahasuerus has sinned?
  3. What is Esther’s dilemma as described in chapter 4? What is the counsel given her by Mordecai? What is Mordecai confident of, and how does this strengthen and encourage Esther?
  4. The Lord turns the hearts of the various decision makers to accomplish His will: Mordecai is moved to enter Esther in the “competition” to become queen; Hegai the eunuch favors Esther and gives her helpful advice (2:9, 15); Ahasuerus chooses her to be queen. What other event of chapter 2 works specifically into God’s plan in chapter 6? How does God use all this to foreshadow the downfall of Haman?
  5. In the midst of the celebration and triumph of the Jews, did you catch what else happens? Check 8:17–9:19.
  6. At the end of chapter 4, Esther commands a fast for all the Jews in the capital city (4:16), in preparation for her approach to the king. What is the purpose of fasting? How may we use fasting as a discipline in our own lives?

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