Syd Maynard - First Testimony - Western Australia Convention - January 1932

Esther 9:27-29, "The Jews ordained, and took upon them, and upon their seed, and upon all such as joined themselves unto them, so as it should not fail, that they would keep these two days according to their writing and according to their appointed time every year. Then Esther the queen, the daughter of Abihail, and Mordecai the Jew, wrote with all authority, to confirm this second letter of Purim."

These people kept these two days of feasting without fail year by year. The book of Esther gives us an account of a kingdom. The reason that this kingdom stands out above every other kingdom, as being most like the Kingdom of God, is because of it being the greatest in the world. This king reigned over nearly all the world - one hundred and twenty-seven provinces. It was the desire of this king for his subject to see the riches and beauty of his kingdom so that they would know that it was a kingdom, worth fighting for and would keep it out of the enemy's hands. It was possible for some to live and die in the kingdom, and yet never know or see all the riches of it. That is why they sell it so cheaply. Let us, as individuals, see if there are right motives there, in taking certain steps that would be for the good of the kingdom. Golden vessels - lives that are precious to God, drinking of the wine of the kingdom. Some would get their eyes on to the things that were there, and would know that they were theirs as long as they were loyal subjects of the kingdom.

A tragedy at the end of the feast - Vashti was asked to do what had never been asked of her before. Women always had their feasts separate from the men, and were never asked to go into where the men were feasting, and she refused. She would feel pretty safe being the queen, and would think it all right in refusing. God may ask something of us here that He has never asked before, and will never ask it again, so what are we going to do? It is going to have an effect; that is the sad part of being in the kingdom. The men saw that the disobedience of the queen was going to have a very bad effect on all other wives, and so they wanted it dealt with. Vashti was never again asked to go into the King's presence, and her name was blotted out because of unwillingness to do what the king had every right to ask of her. She was the most precious treasure of the kingdom, but proved unworthy of his love. All that is needed in His Kingdom is trueness and willingness of heart. They had to go a long way to get someone else to fill Vashti's place. A few were gathered out of the millions and Esther was the chosen one out of the chosen to fill the place - she was the king's choice. By nature she had no claim, by bringing up she had no claim, but she found favour with the one who sat on the throne. Jesus chooses that which is most like Himself.

Soon the Jewess maid was made conscious of the reason that she was in the palace. Mordecai said to her, "and who knoweth thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?" (Chapter 4:14) The Jews were in distress and sorrow, because of the decree that had gone forth for them all to be destroyed on such a day of such a month - young and old alike. Mordecai was greatly distressed on account of this and he appealed to Esther to go into the presence of the king and make supplication for the life of her people. Mordecai got into a lot of trouble because he refused to bow to what was wrong. We often save ourselves from trouble by bowing to the wrong thing. The most important lesson in this book is Esther going into the king's presence to intercede for her people. She had not seen the king's face for a month, so would feel that she had lost favour with him, and she knew she could not intercede for others when in this state. She said she would go into the king to intercede for her people, "and if I perish, I perish." She was willing to go as far as she could, she stood back in the corner, but she found favour and came into the king's presence. He told her to make her petition known to him but she couldn't seem to ask what she desired. It was because there was one there that she afterwards called the "wicked one," and it is the wicked one that makes it hard for us when we go into the King's presence. He will make it hard for us to open our hearts, and talk to the One that can help us.

Esther asked for her life and the life of her people (Chapter 7:3). (There is the victory when we have found favour in the king's eyes.) The decree had gone forth that all Jews were to die. The message made known to the people their hopelessness, and left them at that.  The message of the false prophets is a message of hopelessness. Esther knew that a decree had gone forth, and was anxious to save her people from death. It was only through her finding favour with the king that all this was altered and changed. From this source (Esther finding favour), there came deliverance for thousands. These things should cause us to press into the king's presence to ask for others. Later, the other messages were sent out, the king's message sealed with the king's seal, a message of hope to those who were under condemnation and living in fear, to be turned into a day of gladness and joy. They would be glad to spur the messengers to tell the others; it was a great kingdom and a long journey to journey to reach all. It is possible to hinder the messengers by our own wickedness and selfishness. This was the reason of the Jews binding themselves to keep the two days of the feast of Purim in remembrance of this great deliverance. It would be told to every generation, and hearts would be moved. The pressure was on Esther's heart, she was moved there. If a person has privileges and undervalues them, and sees the influence on others that is never going to die, it will be torment enough for them in eternity.

These Jews were never going to let it die out of their memory. It was not some new thing that they were going to talk about during those two days of Purim, but how Esther was willing to put her life in danger so that they could have deliverance. Something to be remembered, in the ages to come, as a result of living our lives right now. Let us therefore fear that we should miss it like foolish Vashti, and look back and see the place we undervalued, with longing eyes, and desire to have it back again. The sentence of death passed on Esther so that she could help her people. May we pass sentence of death on ourselves so that we can reach others, be willing to go as far as we can to bring the blessing of God on others. Esther did not take the message, but she was the one that found favour with the king, who sent the messengers at her request. There is the need for those who like Esther, will make petitions for those who are condemned so that the right messengers will be sent forth.