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Esther 5:1-8 (New International Reader's Version)

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Esther Invites the King and Haman to a Big Dinner

1 On the third day Esther put her royal robes on. She stood in the inner courtyard of the palace. It was in front of the king's hall. The king was sitting on his royal throne in the hall. He was facing the entrance. 2 He saw Queen Esther standing in the courtyard. He was pleased with her. So he reached out toward her the gold rod that was in his hand. Then Esther approached him. She touched the tip of the rod. 3 The king asked, "What is it, Queen Esther? What do you want? I'll give it to you. I'll even give you up to half of my kingdom." 4 Esther replied, "King Xerxes, if it pleases you, come to a big dinner today. I've prepared it for you. Please have Haman come with you." 5 "Bring Haman at once," the king said to his servants. "Then we'll do what Esther asks." So the king and Haman went to the big dinner Esther had prepared. 6 As they were drinking wine, the king asked Esther the same question again. He said, "What do you want? I'll give it to you. What do you want me to do for you? I'll even give you up to half of my kingdom." 7 Esther replied, "Here is what I want. Here is my appeal to you. 8 I hope you will show me your favor. I hope you will be pleased to give me what I want. And I hope you will be pleased to listen to my appeal. If you are, I'd like you and Haman to come tomorrow to the big dinner I'll prepare for you. Then I'll answer your question."
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