Last Sunday and this Sunday at The Way the message is Pride vs Humility. One of my favorite events in Scripture is found in the Book of Esther. It is also one of the best illustrations of PRIDE vs Humility.
Mordecai was Esther’s uncle, a righteous Jew. At the end of chapter 2, Mordecai learns of a plot to assassinate King Ahasuerus. He reports it to Queen Esther who then tells the king on Mordecai’s behalf. The plot thickens in Chapter 3 when the king honors a man named Haman. The king promotes him in rank and gives the command that everyone must bow down and pay homage to Haman. Mordecai will not do so, which enrages Haman. Haman plots to execute Mordecai and annihilate Mordecai’s people. That is when God enters the picture. God prepares Esther to intervene with the king at Mordecai’s request. Her rescue comes in chapters 7-10.
But my favorite part of the book happens in chapter 6, before Esther’s daring visit with the king and the rescue of her people. Chapter 6 is the duel between PRIDE and Humility.
I believe that God caused the king to have a restless night without sleep. During that night, while reading the record book of daily events, the king learns that Mordecai had foiled the plot of the assassins but had never been rewarded for it. He decides to honor Mordecai and looks around for someone to carry out that command. Wouldn’t you know, the first person on the scene is Haman who is coming to demand Mordecai be executed because of his refusal to bow.
Haman is commanded to put a royal garment on Mordecai, place him on the king’s horse and parade him around the city square shouting, “This is what is done for the man the king wants to honor.” [6:9 HCSB]
Haman’s PRIDE and Mordecai’s Humility came to blows and PRIDE lost. “Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.” [Prov 16:18]
Makes we wonder how many people are going to be leading horses around heaven, and how many people will be seated on them!