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The Banquets of the King 1:1 Now it took place in the days of Ahasuerus, the Ahasuerus who reigned from India to Ethiopia over 127 provinces,
2 in those days as King Ahasuerus sat on his royal throne which was at the citadel in Susa,
3 in the third year of his reign he gave a banquet for all his princes and attendants, the army officers of Persia and Media, the nobles and the princes of his provinces being in his presence.
4 And he displayed the riches of his royal glory and the splendor of his great majesty for many days, 180 days.
5 When these days were completed, the king gave a banquet lasting seven days for all the people who were present at the citadel in Susa, from the greatest to the least, in the court of the garden of the king’s palace.
6 There were hangings of fine white and violet linen held by cords of fine purple linen on silver rings and marble columns, and couches of gold and silver on a mosaic pavement of porphyry, marble, mother-of-pearl and precious stones.
7 Drinks were served in golden vessels of various kinds, and the royal wine was plentiful according to the king’s bounty.
8 The drinking was done according to the law, there was no compulsion, for so the king had given orders to each official of his household that he should do according to the desires of each person.
9 Queen Vashti also gave a banquet for the women in the palace which belonged to King Ahasuerus.
Queen Vashti’s Refusal 10 On the seventh day, when the heart of the king was merry with wine, he commanded Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, Abagtha, Zethar and Carkas, the seven eunuchs who served in the presence of King Ahasuerus,
11 to bring Queen Vashti before the king with her royal crown in order to display her beauty to the people and the princes, for she was beautiful.
12 But Queen Vashti refused to come at the king’s command delivered by the eunuchs. Then the king became very angry and his wrath burned within him.
13 Then the king said to the wise men who understood the times--for it was the custom of the king so to speak before all who knew law and justice
14 and were close to him: Carshena, Shethar, Admatha, Tarshish, Meres, Marsena and Memucan, the seven princes of Persia and Media who had access to the king’s presence and sat in the first place in the kingdom--
15 “According to law, what is to be done with Queen Vashti, because she did not obey the command of King Ahasuerus delivered by the eunuchs?”
16 In the presence of the king and the princes, Memucan said, “Queen Vashti has wronged not only the king but also all the princes and all the peoples who are in all the provinces of King Ahasuerus.
17 For the queen’s conduct will become known to all the women causing them to look with contempt on their husbands by saying, ‘King Ahasuerus commanded Queen Vashti to be brought in to his presence, but she did not come.’
18 This day the ladies of Persia and Media who have heard of the queen’s conduct will speak in the same way to all the king’s princes, and there will be plenty of contempt and anger.
19 If it pleases the king, let a royal edict be issued by him and let it be written in the laws of Persia and Media so that it cannot be repealed, that Vashti may no longer come into the presence of King Ahasuerus, and let the king give her royal position to another who is more worthy than she.
20 When the king’s edict which he will make is heard throughout all his kingdom, great as it is, then all women will give honor to their husbands, great and small.”
21 This word pleased the king and the princes, and the king did as Memucan proposed.
22 So he sent letters to all the king’s provinces, to each province according to its script and to every people according to their language, that every man should be the master in his own house and the one who speaks in the language of his own people.
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Vashti’s Successor Sought 2:1 After these things when the anger of King Ahasuerus had subsided, he remembered Vashti and what she had done and what had been decreed against her.
2 Then the king’s attendants, who served him, said, “Let beautiful young virgins be sought for the king.
3 Let the king appoint overseers in all the provinces of his kingdom that they may gather every beautiful young virgin to the citadel of Susa, to the harem, into the custody of Hegai, the king’s eunuch, who is in charge of the women; and let their cosmetics be given them.
4 Then let the young lady who pleases the king be queen in place of Vashti.” And the matter pleased the king, and he did accordingly.
5 Now there was at the citadel in Susa a Jew whose name was Mordecai, the son of Jair, the son of Shimei, the son of Kish, a Benjamite,
6 who had been taken into exile from Jerusalem with the captives who had been exiled with Jeconiah king of Judah, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had exiled.
7 He was bringing up Hadassah, that is Esther, his uncle’s daughter, for she had no father or mother. Now the young lady was beautiful of form and face, and when her father and her mother died, Mordecai took her as his own daughter.
Esther Finds Favor 8 So it came about when the command and decree of the king were heard and many young ladies were gathered to the citadel of Susa into the custody of Hegai, that Esther was taken to the king’s palace into the custody of Hegai, who was in charge of the women.
9 Now the young lady pleased him and found favor with him. So he quickly provided her with her cosmetics and food, gave her seven choice maids from the king’s palace and transferred her and her maids to the best place in the harem.
10 Esther did not make known her people or her kindred, for Mordecai had instructed her that she should not make them known.
11 Every day Mordecai walked back and forth in front of the court of the harem to learn how Esther was and how she fared.
12 Now when the turn of each young lady came to go in to King Ahasuerus, after the end of her twelve months under the regulations for the women--for the days of their beautification were completed as follows: six months with oil of myrrh and six months with spices and the cosmetics for women--
13 the young lady would go in to the king in this way: anything that she desired was given her to take with her from the harem to the king’s palace.
14 In the evening she would go in and in the morning she would return to the second harem, to the custody of Shaashgaz, the king’s eunuch who was in charge of the concubines. She would not again go in to the king unless the king delighted in her and she was summoned by name.
15 Now when the turn of Esther, the daughter of Abihail the uncle of Mordecai who had taken her as his daughter, came to go in to the king, she did not request anything except what Hegai, the king’s eunuch who was in charge of the women, advised. And Esther found favor in the eyes of all who saw her.
16 So Esther was taken to King Ahasuerus to his royal palace in the tenth month which is the month Tebeth, in the seventh year of his reign.
Esther Becomes Queen 17 The king loved Esther more than all the women, and she found favor and kindness with him more than all the virgins, so that he set the royal crown on her head and made her queen instead of Vashti.
18 Then the king gave a great banquet, Esther’s banquet, for all his princes and his servants; he also made a holiday for the provinces and gave gifts according to the king’s bounty.
19 When the virgins were gathered together the second time, then Mordecai was sitting at the king’s gate.
20 Esther had not yet made known her kindred or her people, even as Mordecai had commanded her; for Esther did what Mordecai told her as she had done when under his care.
Mordecai Saves the King21 In those days, while Mordecai was sitting at the king’s gate, Bigthan and Teresh, two of the king’s officials from those who guarded the door, became angry and sought to lay hands on King Ahasuerus.
22 But the plot became known to Mordecai and he told Queen Esther, and Esther informed the king in Mordecai’s name.
23 Now when the plot was investigated and found to be so, they were both hanged on a gallows; and it was written in the Book of the Chronicles in the king’s presence.
« Proverbs 27 | Proverbs 28 | Proverbs 29 »
Warnings and Instructions28:1 The wicked flee when no one is pursuing, But the righteous are bold as a lion.
2 By the transgression of a land many are its princes, But by a man of understanding and knowledge, so it endures.
3 A poor man who oppresses the lowly Is like a driving rain which leaves no food.
4 Those who forsake the law praise the wicked, But those who keep the law strive with them.
5 Evil men do not understand justice, But those who seek the LORD understand all things.
6 Better is the poor who walks in his integrity Than he who is crooked though he be rich.
7 He who keeps the law is a discerning son, But he who is a companion of gluttons humiliates his father.
8 He who increases his wealth by interest and usury Gathers it for him who is gracious to the poor.
9 He who turns away his ear from listening to the law, Even his prayer is an abomination.
10 He who leads the upright astray in an evil way Will himself fall into his own pit, But the blameless will inherit good.
11 The rich man is wise in his own eyes, But the poor who has understanding sees through him.
12 When the righteous triumph, there is great glory, But when the wicked rise, men hide themselves.
13 He who conceals his transgressions will not prosper, But he who confesses and forsakes them will find compassion.
14 How blessed is the man who fears always, But he who hardens his heart will fall into calamity.
15 Like a roaring lion and a rushing bear Is a wicked ruler over a poor people.
16 A leader who is a great oppressor lacks understanding, But he who hates unjust gain will prolong his days.
17 A man who is laden with the guilt of human blood Will be a fugitive until death; let no one support him.
18 He who walks blamelessly will be delivered, But he who is crooked will fall all at once.
19 He who tills his land will have plenty of food, But he who follows empty pursuits will have poverty in plenty.
20 A faithful man will abound with blessings, But he who makes haste to be rich will not go unpunished.
21 To show partiality is not good, Because for a piece of bread a man will transgress.
22 A man with an evil eye hastens after wealth And does not know that want will come upon him.
23 He who rebukes a man will afterward find more favor Than he who flatters with the tongue.
24 He who robs his father or his mother And says, “It is not a transgression,” Is the companion of a man who destroys.
25 An arrogant man stirs up strife, But he who trusts in the LORD will prosper.
26 He who trusts in his own heart is a fool, But he who walks wisely will be delivered.
27 He who gives to the poor will never want, But he who shuts his eyes will have many curses.
28 When the wicked rise, men hide themselves; But when they perish, the righteous increase.
« Luke 7 | Luke 8 | Luke 9 »
Ministering Women 8:1 Soon afterwards, He began going around from one city and village to another, proclaiming and preaching the kingdom of God. The twelve were with Him,
2 and also some women who had been healed of evil spirits and sicknesses: Mary who was called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out,
3 and Joanna the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward, and Susanna, and many others who were contributing to their support out of their private means.
Parable of the Sower 4 When a large crowd was coming together, and those from the various cities were journeying to Him, He spoke by way of a parable:
5 “The sower went out to sow his seed; and as he sowed, some fell beside the road, and it was trampled under foot and the birds of the air ate it up.
6 Other seed fell on rocky soil, and as soon as it grew up, it withered away, because it had no moisture.
7 Other seed fell among the thorns; and the thorns grew up with it and choked it out.
8 Other seed fell into the good soil, and grew up, and produced a crop a hundred times as great.” As He said these things, He would call out, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”
9 His disciples began questioning Him as to what this parable meant.
10 And He said, “To you it has been granted to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God, but to the rest it is in parables, so that SEEING THEY MAY NOT SEE, AND HEARING THEY MAY NOT UNDERSTAND.
11 “Now the parable is this: the seed is the word of God.
12 Those beside the road are those who have heard; then the devil comes and takes away the word from their heart, so that they will not believe and be saved.
13 Those on the rocky soil are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no firm root; they believe for a while, and in time of temptation fall away.
14 The seed which fell among the thorns, these are the ones who have heard, and as they go on their way they are choked with worries and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to maturity.
15 But the seed in the good soil, these are the ones who have heard the word in an honest and good heart, and hold it fast, and bear fruit with perseverance.
Parable of the Lamp 16 “Now no one after lighting a lamp covers it over with a container, or puts it under a bed; but he puts it on a lampstand, so that those who come in may see the light.
17 For nothing is hidden that will not become evident, nor anything secret that will not be known and come to light.
18 So take care how you listen; for whoever has, to him more shall be given; and whoever does not have, even what he thinks he has shall be taken away from him.”
19 And His mother and brothers came to Him, and they were unable to get to Him because of the crowd.
20 And it was reported to Him, “Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside, wishing to see You.”
21 But He answered and said to them, “My mother and My brothers are these who hear the word of God and do it.”
Jesus Stills the Sea 22 Now on one of those days Jesus and His disciples got into a boat, and He said to them, “Let us go over to the other side of the lake.” So they launched out.
23 But as they were sailing along He fell asleep; and a fierce gale of wind descended on the lake, and they began to be swamped and to be in danger.
24 They came to Jesus and woke Him up, saying, “Master, Master, we are perishing!” And He got up and rebuked the wind and the surging waves, and they stopped, and it became calm.
25 And He said to them, “Where is your faith?” They were fearful and amazed, saying to one another, “Who then is this, that He commands even the winds and the water, and they obey Him?”
The Demoniac Cured 26 Then they sailed to the country of the Gerasenes, which is opposite Galilee.
27 And when He came out onto the land, He was met by a man from the city who was possessed with demons; and who had not put on any clothing for a long time, and was not living in a house, but in the tombs.
28 Seeing Jesus, he cried out and fell before Him, and said in a loud voice, “What business do we have with each other, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg You, do not torment me.”
29 For He had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For it had seized him many times; and he was bound with chains and shackles and kept under guard, and yet he would break his bonds and be driven by the demon into the desert.
30 And Jesus asked him, “What is your name?” And he said, “Legion”; for many demons had entered him.
31 They were imploring Him not to command them to go away into the abyss.
32 Now there was a herd of many swine feeding there on the mountain; and the demons implored Him to permit them to enter the swine. And He gave them permission.
33 And the demons came out of the man and entered the swine; and the herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake and was drowned.
34 When the herdsmen saw what had happened, they ran away and reported it in the city and out in the country.
35 The people went out to see what had happened; and they came to Jesus, and found the man from whom the demons had gone out, sitting down at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind; and they became frightened.
36 Those who had seen it reported to them how the man who was demon-possessed had been made well.
37 And all the people of the country of the Gerasenes and the surrounding district asked Him to leave them, for they were gripped with great fear; and He got into a boat and returned.
38 But the man from whom the demons had gone out was begging Him that he might accompany Him; but He sent him away, saying,
39 “Return to your house and describe what great things God has done for you.” So he went away, proclaiming throughout the whole city what great things Jesus had done for him.
Miracles of Healing 40 And as Jesus returned, the people welcomed Him, for they had all been waiting for Him.
41 And there came a man named Jairus, and he was an official of the synagogue; and he fell at Jesus’ feet, and began to implore Him to come to his house;
42 for he had an only daughter, about twelve years old, and she was dying. But as He went, the crowds were pressing against Him.
43 And a woman who had a hemorrhage for twelve years, and could not be healed by anyone,
44 came up behind Him and touched the fringe of His cloak, and immediately her hemorrhage stopped.
45 And Jesus said, “Who is the one who touched Me?” And while they were all denying it, Peter said, “Master, the people are crowding and pressing in on You.”
46 But Jesus said, “Someone did touch Me, for I was aware that power had gone out of Me.”
47 When the woman saw that she had not escaped notice, she came trembling and fell down before Him, and declared in the presence of all the people the reason why she had touched Him, and how she had been immediately healed.
48 And He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace.”
49 While He was still speaking, someone came from the house of the synagogue official, saying, “Your daughter has died; do not trouble the Teacher anymore.”
50 But when Jesus heard this, He answered him, “Do not be afraid any longer; only believe, and she will be made well.”
51 When He came to the house, He did not allow anyone to enter with Him, except Peter and John and James, and the girl’s father and mother.
52 Now they were all weeping and lamenting for her; but He said, “Stop weeping, for she has not died, but is asleep.”
53 And they began laughing at Him, knowing that she had died.
54 He, however, took her by the hand and called, saying, “Child, arise!”
55 And her spirit returned, and she got up immediately; and He gave orders for something to be given her to eat.
56 Her parents were amazed; but He instructed them to tell no one what had happened.
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