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Esther 8

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 1 On that day King Ahasuerus gave the house of Haman, the Jews' enemy, to Esther the queen. And Mordecai came before the king for Esther had told how he was related to her.

 2 And the king took off his signet ring, which he had reclaimed from Haman, and gave it to Mordecai. And Esther set Mordecai over the house of Haman.

 3 And Esther spoke yet again to the king and fell down at his feet and besought him with tears to avert the evil plan of Haman the Agagite and his scheme that he had devised against the Jews.

 4 Then the king held out the golden scepter toward Esther. So Esther arose and stood before the king,

 5 And said, "If it pleases the king and if I have favor in his sight and the thing seem right before the king and I am pleasing in his eyes, let an order be written to reverse the letters devised by Haman the son of Hammedatha, the Agagite, which he wrote to destroy the Jews who are in all the king's provinces.

 6 For how can I endure to see the evil that will come to my people? Or how can I endure to see the destruction of my kindred?"

 7 Then King Ahasuerus said to Esther the queen and to Mordecai the Jew, "Behold, I have given Esther the house of Haman, and they have hung him upon the gallows because he laid his hand upon the Jews.

 8 Now write concerning the Jews as you please in the king's name, and seal it with the king's ring for whatever is written in the king's name and sealed with the king's ring, no man may reverse."

 9 Then the king's scribes were called, on the twentieth third day of the third month, the month Sivan, and it was written according to all that Mordecai commanded to the Jews, the governors, and the deputies and rulers of the provinces from India to Ethiopia, a hundred twenty seven provinces, to every province in its own writing and to every people in their own language, and to the Jews in their own writing and language.

 10 He wrote in the King Ahasuerus' name and sealed it with the king's ring and sent letters by couriers on horseback, riders on swift steeds sired by the royal horses.

 11 In which the king granted the Jews who were in every city to gather together and protect their lives; to destroy, to slay and to annihilate the armed forces of any people or province that attacked them, their little ones and their women; and to take the enemies' possessions as plunder.

 12 On one day in all the provinces of King Ahasuerus, on the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which is the month Adar,

 13 A copy of the writing was to be issued as a decree in every province and published to all people, and the Jews should be ready on that day to avenge themselves on their enemies.

 14 So the couriers, who rode upon swift horses, went out, being hastened and pressed on by the king's command. And the decree was issued at the citadel in Shushan.

 15 Then Mordecai went out from the presence of the king in royal apparel of blue and white, with a great crown of gold and a garment of fine linen and purple; and the city of Shushan rejoiced and was glad.

 16 The Jews had light and gladness and joy and honor.

 17 And in every province and in every city, wherever the king's command and his decree came, the Jews had joy and gladness, a feast and a holiday. And many of the people of the land became Jews, for the fear of the Jews fell upon them.


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