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Esther 8 (GOD'S WORD Translation)

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1 On that same day King Xerxes gave the property of Haman, the enemy of the Jews, to Queen Esther. Also, Mordecai came to the king because Esther had told him how Mordecai was related to her. 2 Then the king took off his signet ring, which he had taken from Haman, and gave it to Mordecai. And Esther put Mordecai in charge of Haman's property. 3 Esther spoke again to the king. She fell down at his feet crying and begged him to have mercy and to undo the evil plot of Haman, who was from Agag, and his conspiracy against the Jews. 4 The king held out his golden scepter to Esther, and Esther got up and stood in front of the king. 5 She said, "Your Majesty, if it pleases you, and if I have found favor with you, if you consider my cause to be reasonable and if I am pleasing to you, cancel the official orders [concerning] the plot of Haman (who was the son of Hammedatha and was from Agag). He signed [the order] to destroy the Jews in all your provinces, Your Majesty. 6 I cannot bear to see my people suffer such evil. And I simply cannot bear to see the destruction of my relatives." 7 King Xerxes said to Queen Esther and Mordecai the Jew, "I have given Haman's property to Esther, and Haman's [dead body] was hung on the pole because he tried to kill the Jews. 8 You write what you think is best for the Jews in the king's name. Seal it also with the king's signet ring, because whatever is written in the king's name and sealed with the king's signet ring cannot be canceled." 9 At that time on the twenty-third day of Sivan, the third month, the king's scribes were summoned. What Mordecai had ordered was written to the Jews and to the satraps, governors, and officers of the 127 provinces from India to Sudan. It was written to each province in its own script, to each people in their own language, and to the Jews in their own script and their own language. 10 Mordecai wrote in King Xerxes' name and sealed the official documents with the king's signet ring. Then he sent them by messengers who rode special horses bred for speed. [He wrote] 11 that the king had given permission for the Jews in every city to assemble, to defend themselves, to wipe out, to kill, and to destroy every armed force of the people and province that is hostile to them, even women and children, and to seize their goods. 12 [This was permitted] on one day in all the provinces of King Xerxes, on the thirteenth day of Adar, the twelfth month. 13 The copy of the document was made public in a decree to every province for all people. On that day the Jews were to be ready to take revenge on their enemies. 14 The messengers rode the king's fastest horses. They left quickly, in keeping with the king's command. The decree was issued also in the fortress of Susa. 15 Mordecai went out from the presence of the king wearing the royal violet and white robe, a large gold crown, and a purple outer robe of fine linen. And the city of Susa cheered and rejoiced. 16 So the Jews were cheerful, happy, joyful, and successful. 17 In every province and every city where the king's message and decree arrived, the Jews were happy and joyful, feasting and enjoying a holiday. Then many common people pretended to be Jews because they were terrified of the Jews.
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