[Back] - [Menu] - [Next]

Esther 2

1 After these things, when the wrath of King Ahasuerus subsided, he remembered Vashti, what she had done, and what had been decreed against her.
2 Then the king's servants who ministered to him said: Let beautiful young virgins be sought for the king;
3 and let the king appoint officers in all the provinces of his kingdom, that they may gather all the beautiful young virgins to Shushan the palace, into the women's house, under the hand of Hegai the king's official, custodian of the women. And let cosmetics be given to them.
4 Then let the young woman who pleases the king be queen instead of Vashti. And the thing pleased the king, and he did so.
5 Now in Shushan the palace there was a certain Jew whose name was Mordecai the son of Jair, the son of Shimei, the son of Kish, a Benjamite.
6 Kish had been carried away from Jerusalem with the captives who had been captured with Jeconiah king of Judah, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had carried away.
7 And Mordecai had brought up Hadassah (that is, Esther), his uncle's daughter, for she had neither father nor mother. And the young woman was of a beautiful figure and good appearance. At the death of her father and mother Mordecai had taken her as his own daughter.
8 So it was, when the king's command and decree were heard, and when many young women were gathered at Shushan the palace, under the hand of Hegai, that Esther also was taken to the king's house, into the hand of Hegai the custodian of the women.
9 Now the young woman was good in his eyes, and she obtained his favor; so he rushed to supply her cosmetics, along with her other provisions. And seven choice maidservants were provided for her from the king's house, and he moved her and her maidservants to the best place in the house of the women.
10 Esther had not revealed her people or family, for Mordecai had charged her not to reveal it.
11 And every day Mordecai walked around in front of the court of the women's house, to learn of Esther's welfare and what was happening with her.
12 Each young woman's turn came to go in to King Ahasuerus after she had completed twelve months according to the regulations for the women, for thus were the days of their beautification accomplished: six months with oil of myrrh, and six months with perfumes and preparations for beautifying women.
13 Thus prepared, each young woman went to the king, and she was given whatever she requested to take with her from the women's house to the king's house.
14 In the evening she went, and in the morning she returned to the second house of the women, to the hand of Shaashgaz, the king's official who kept the concubines. She would not go in to the king again unless the king delighted in her and summoned her by name.
15 Now when the turn came for Esther (the daughter of Abihail the uncle of Mordecai, who had taken her as his daughter), to go in to the king, she requested nothing but what Hegai the king's official, the custodian of the women, commanded. And Esther rose to favor in the eyes of all who saw her.
16 So Esther was taken to King Ahasuerus, into his royal house, in the tenth month, which is the month of Tebeth, in the seventh year of his reign.
17 And the king loved Esther more than all the other women, and she obtained grace and favor in his presence more than all the virgins; so he set the royal crown upon her head and made her queen instead of Vashti.
18 And the king made a great feast, the Feast of Esther, for all his rulers and servants; and he instituted a holiday in the provinces and gave gifts according to the hand of the king.
19 And when the virgins were gathered together the second time, then Mordecai sat in the king's gate.
20 Now Esther had not revealed her kindred nor her people, just as Mordecai had charged her, for Esther obeyed the command of Mordecai as when she was brought up by him.
21 In those days, while Mordecai sat in the king's gate, two of the king's officials, Bigthan and Teresh, doorkeepers, became furious and sought to lay hands on King Ahasuerus.
22 And the matter became known to Mordecai, who told Queen Esther, and Esther informed the king in Mordecai's name.
23 And when an inquiry was made into the matter, it was confirmed, and both were hanged on a gallows; and it was written in the book of the chronicles in the presence of the king.
[Back] - [Menu] - [Next]