Esther 3:13
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13  Accordingly, written instructions were dispatched by couriers to all the king’s provinces to destroy, massacre, and exterminate all the Yehudim, young

and old, children and women, on a single day, on the thirteenth day of the twelfth month—that is, the month of Adar—and to plunder their possessions.

יג  וְנִשְׁלוֹחַ סְפָרִים בְּיַד הָרָצִים אֶל־כָּל־מְדִינוֹת הַמֶּלֶךְ לְהַשְׁמִיד לַהֲרֹג וּלְאַבֵּד אֶת־כָּל־הַיְּהוּדִים מִנַּעַר וְעַד־זָקֵן טַף

 3:13   To destroy, massacre, and exterminate all the Yehudim

When the Children of Israel in Exile, the land always awaits their return.

Usually, the Torah gives us the reason why an individual, or the nation as a whole, are punished. Megillat Esther, however, does not explicitly state what the people did to deserve the threat of annihilation. When viewed in historical context, it becomes clear that the Jews of Shushan were guilty for not having returned to Eretz Yisrael even though they had the opportunity to do so. After the Persian king Cyrus conquered the Babylonians, he allowed the Children of Israel to return to the Land of Israel and begin reconstruction of the Beit Hamikdash. However, a mere 42,360 returned to Yerushalayim (Ezra 2:64) while close to a million remained in Babylonia. The generation was therefore punished for their lack of enthusiasm towards returning to Israel. This teaches us the importance of making every effort to embrace the land and to physically return to it whenever possible.

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Comments ( 2 )

The comments below do not necessarily reflect the beliefs and opinions of The Israel Bible™.

  • Is it because when told to kill everything, and Saul didn't. He spared Agag, and also the livestock. I thought that Haman was an Agagite. If Saul killed all the Agagites then how does Haman fit into all this, he must be a dscendant of Agag and thus revenge was on his agenda. Please correct me if I have got this wrong!

  • This is an interesting perspective that this event happened because the Jews didn’t return to Y’srael when they had the opportunity to do so.
    How does that apply to the manner Jewish people today that still live scattered throughout the nations of the world?
    While there are many instances of attacks and persecution reported world-wide, it still seems that there are many content to live out their lives where they are living now.
    It’s a mystery to me as I would love to have the opportunity to live in the Land, but I’m denied this blessing.
    Baruch Hashem.

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Esther 3:13

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