Addition C

Mordecai and Esther pray for deliverance

1 Then, calling to mind all the works of the Lord, Mordecai pleaded with the Lord,
2 saying, “Lord, Lord, you are the king who rules over all things. The universe is in your power, and there is no one to stop you when you have resolved to save Israel.
3 You made the heavens and the earth, and everything that is wonderful under heaven.
4 You are Lord of all, and there is no one who will oppose you, Lord.
5 “You know all things. You know, Lord, that it wasn't out of disrespect, pride, or self-importance that I didn't bow down before proud Haman.
6 To save Israel, I would have been glad to kiss the soles of his feet.
7 Rather, I did this to avoid setting the honor of any human being above God's honor. I won't bow down before anyone except you, my Lord. Nor will I do these things out of pride.
8 "Now, Lord God, King, God of Abraham, spare your people, because the enemy seeks our ruin. They desire to destroy what has been your possession from the beginning.
9 Don't neglect your people, whom you delivered out of Egypt.
10 Listen to my appeal, and have mercy on the people who are your lot. Turn our mourning into feasting, that we might live and sing praises to your name, Lord. Don't silence the voice of those who praise you."
11 And all Israel cried out with all their might, for death was staring right at them.
12 Queen Esther, overcome by this contest with death, turned to the Lord for protection.
13 She took off her royal garments and put on mourning clothes. Instead of the finest spices, she smeared her head and body with ashes and dung, and humbled herself. Each place she had once joyfully beautified, she now covered with her tangled hair.
14 Then she begged the Lord God of Israel: “My Lord, you alone are our king. Help me! I have no one to help me but you,
15 and I am in great danger now.
16 From my birth, Lord, I have heard how you chose Israel from among the rest of the nations, and our fathers from their ancestors, to be an everlasting inheritance. I have heard how you did for them all that you had promised.
17 But now we have sinned before you, and you have delivered us into the power of our enemies
18 because we worshipped their gods. You are just, Lord.
19 Yet the enemies weren't satisfied with our bitter slavery, so they shook hands with their idols in partnership.
20 They plan to set aside the promises you made, to rob you of your inheritance, to silence those who praise you, and to stamp out the honor of your temple and your altar.
21 They want to open the mouths of the nations to praise the wonderful deeds of useless idols so that a human king might be honored forever.
22 “Don't surrender your scepter, Lord, to things that don't exist. Don't let them mock our downfall. Instead, turn their scheme against them and make an example of the one who started this against us.
23 Remember us, Lord, and reveal yourself in the time of our distress. Give me courage, king of the gods and ruler of every authority.
24 When I speak, let my words be persuasive before the lion, and turn the king's heart to hatred toward the one who is fighting against us, to bring his life to an end along with those who agree with him.
25 Deliver us by your actions, and help me, I who am alone and have no one except you, Lord. "You know all things.
26 You know that I hate the honor of those who don't follow your Law. I detest sharing the bed of this uncircumcised king or indeed of any foreigner.
27 You know my trouble: I hate the crown that is on my head when I appear in public. I despise it as I would a menstrual rag, and I don't wear it when I am in private.
28 I, your servant, didn't dine at Haman's table. Nor did I honor the king's banquet or drink wine that had been offered to the gods.
29 From the day of my crowning until now, your servant hasn't had any joy except in you, Lord, God of Abraham.
30 All-powerful God, listen to the voice of those who despair, and deliver us from the hands of those who do wrong, and deliver me from my fear!"