Called Out of Darkness

The story of Esther depicts one of the many scenarios of an ongoing controversy; a controversy that will eventually be settled in God’s time—not ours. The age-old controversy is based on a challenge over one of the most profound questions of all time— ”Who is God?” A question at the root of a game of thrones contest that has existed since the fall of the cherub who was once perfect in wisdom and beauty until iniquity was found in him (Ezekiel 28:11–19).

This fallen angel is known by many names; the serpent, Lucifer, HaSatan, the devil, Appollyon, the evil one, and the anti-Christ—just to name a few. Satan has used various people and situations over the centuries to discredit God and oppress the people that are called by his name. The list is long and includes radical Jihadists and their leaders, Arab authorities and their wars, Hitler and the Holocaust, the Pograms, the Inquisition, the Crusades, Greek and Roman emperors such as Titus and Hadrian, the Selucid emperor Antiochus Epiphanes, Jabin (the king of Canaan), the Philistines, the Pharaoh in Egypt, and Haman—the ruler whose horrific choice challenged Esther to make a far more heavenly choice of her own. However, it is not just political leaders and historic events that have the power to influence others. The enemy of God is also using the common voices of everyday people to create world opinion. These common voices pressure and condemn Israel when they build neighborhoods for the increasing numbers of oppressed Jews, who are returning home. They ridicule and weaken the political influence of Israel’s democratic leaders and openly support her dictator enemies. They believe (and repeat) the talking heads of bias who spin news vilifying Israel as tyrants, and they support the UN as it calls for disinvestment of her companies and a boycott of her products. Simply put, the enemy does not favor Zion.

What is Zion? The biblical understanding of Zion is the covenant plan God has for his people, his nation and his land all the way to its culmination of complete restoration when the Messiah takes his place on the throne in Jerusalem.

“For it is the day of the Lord’s vengeance, and the year of recompenses for the controversy of Zion” (Isaiah 34:8).

God’s enemy uses the nations to fight the eternal promise that the generations of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob would exist forever. The efforts and reasoning of the enemy of God are that if these people are annihilated, or if they cease to be a nation, then God would ultimately be a liar. Discredit and discard God’s chosen people, and you discredit and discard God himself. Satan has attempted to destroy God’s plan by using leading figures in history in vain attempts to overthrow God’s honor and his throne.

In the Book of Esther, we have such an example—the attempted destruction of the Jewish people at the hands of a misguided and manipulative ruler. Haman, the viceroy to King Xerxes, concocted a plan to destroy all the Jews in Sushan and its provinces. The plan was born as a result of envy and jealousy of Mordechai, the king’s advisor. Mordechai was Queen Esther’s cousin— and he was also a Jew. Haman hated Jews. It was a secret that Esther—the wife of King Xerxes—was a Jew, and when the queen was informed of Haman’s insidious plot, she realized the fate of the Jewish people rested on her—and she had a choice to make. According to Esther 3, Haman’s goal was to “destroy, kill and exterminate all Jews, from young to old, including small children and women, on a specific day (the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, the month of Adar) and to seize their goods as plunder” (Esther 3:12–13). He instructed the king’s secretaries to write down his orders and to send these letters by courier to all the royal provinces—ordering the king’s army commanders, governors, and officials to carry out his heinous orders.

When Esther was informed of the diabolical plot, she knew the part she played was more than just being an influence over her husband. Before she risked an uninvited audience with the king of the empire (considered a crime punishable by death,) she had to first call on the King of the universe. She knew it was paramount to implore the One who held the hearts of kings in his hands. Esther knew first and foremost where her help would come from. The situation was overwhelming and far beyond just retracting the official edict. Esther needed divine wisdom and intercession— she needed counsel from God.

“The Lord bringeth the counsel of the heathen to nought: he maketh the devices of the people of none effect. The counsel of the Lord standeth forever, the thoughts of his heart to all generations. Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord; and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance” (Psalm 33:10-12, KJV).

Though the evil one is powerful and uses brilliant plots of destruction to bring the chosen people to an end, God has his own plans for them. Plans that trump the powers of hell. The plans of the “challenger” to destroy God’s people who are called by his Name (Jew or Christian) will never come into full fruition unless God allows it . . . and He never will.

“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end”(Jeremiah 29:11).

What is the “expected end?” God tells us in his Word what to expect in the acharit hayamim. The typical translation of this Hebrew term is “the end of the era.” What is not understood is the inference of this “era.” The era that is coming to an end is “the era of man governing himself.” This era ends as God sets up his Kingdom, establishes his rulership, and causes all nations to confess that Israel’s God is the One True God. It will be at a set time that God will bring about all that is prophesied to build up Zion. He will orchestrate the nations to hang themselves in their hatred and envy for God and his chosen Israel.

“Thou shalt arise, and have mercy upon Zion: for the time to favour her, yea, the set time, is come. For thy servants take pleasure in her stones, and favour the dust thereof. So the heathen shall fear the name of the Lord, and all the kings of the earth thy glory. When the Lord shall build up Zion, he shall appear in his glory” (Psalms 102:13-16 KJV).

The many attempts of the challenger to dethrone God and destroy his people have come to naught, and they will continue to fail until the set time when God finishes his plan.

“Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing? The kings of the earth set themselves, The many attempts of the challenger to dethrone God and destroy his people have come to naught, and they will continue to fail until the set time when God finishes his plan and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord, and against his anointed, saying, Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us. He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision. Then shall he speak unto them in his wrath, and vex them in his sore displeasure. Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion” (Psalms 2:1-6 KJV).

At the end of the acherit hayamim, at that appointed time, God will arise and defend Zion. The rightful King of the Universe, who favors Zion and is protecting her, will take action to build her up, in order to establish his throne within her. There will never be a powerful enough “Hitler” or “Haman” that can overcome the spoken Word of God, even when the enemy himself enters into a time of a one world leader. He is still no match for the Almighty Creator of all things. The plans of evil men will not—and cannot—succeed.

Esther consulted her God. She implored her people to do the same. She knew she would be used of him in her time and circumstances because he had placed her in the position of influence concerning his people, his Zion. She trusted God first and waited for him to deposit his wisdom in her as to what she was to do. Yes, God can supernaturally intervene in the affairs of man—but his preferred way is to use his servants—those who will consult him first and who have an ear to listen. God can—and does—use his children to change the course of history. We are in the time that God is actively building Zion at a rapid speed. The evidence is all around us as Jews are flooding back to their ancient land as was prophesied. Anti-Semitism in the world has been the catalyst to prove God’s Word of His people’s return to their promised land. And as the nations “prepare the gallows” to lure them back only to push them into the sea of war, God has other plans to punish the nations that have gathered against them in their own gallows of war.

Throughout time and history, the Jews have been displaced, exiled, and scattered. And even though they have not always been a sovereign nation, in the eyes of God, they were always his holy nation. A nation set apart for God’s use and his glory. A covenant nation, not only being built in the physical realm but also in the spiritual realm. As we face what many view as uncertainty, those of us who are his true servants like Esther are certain of God’s sovereignty. And like Esther, we need to pray and fast, seek His face, and count on his wisdom to manifest through our behavior and actions.

He calls us a peculiar people made up of many races and ethnicities, both genders united in the Lord. He calls us a royal priesthood. A people that have the authority and power of the Spirit within us to pray and intercede for his Kingdom to come. And he calls us his holy nation, Zion, showing forth the praises of him who has called us out of the darkness of the enemy into his Kingdom and Light (1 Peter 2:9).

God uses his servants as instruments in his hands. He puts his own people who are bridled and submitted unto him in positions of prominence, power and influence. We see this in people such as Daniel, David, and Esther. We must pray for people in leadership—that they would not succumb to arrogance and self-exultation but rather approach the One who holds the entire world in his hands in humility and awe. He uses those who fear (reverence) him and love his Word. He is no respecter of persons. He has used and will continue to use great men and women of influence, poor and humbled servants, Jews and non-Jews alike to advance his Kingdom purposes.

God has expanded his Kingdom to other people as he promised Abraham he would. It is through the new covenant in Yeshua, that we are all grafted into the promises of this people and the commonwealth of their nation. All who repent of their arrogance and selfish natures, and who declare that Israel’s God is God and there is no other, will be bearers of light to a dark world. We are all his people called to make an impact during “such a time as this.”

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