Esther Plans a Banquet
5 Now it came about on the third day that Esther put on her royal robes and stood in the inner court of the king’s palace in front of the king’s [a]rooms, and the king was sitting on his royal throne in the [b]throne room, opposite the entrance to the palace. 2 When the king saw Esther the queen standing in the court, she obtained favor in his sight; and the king extended to Esther the golden scepter which was in his hand. So Esther came near and touched the top of the scepter. 3 Then the king said to her, “What is troubling you, Queen Esther? And what is your request? Even to half of the kingdom it shall be given to you.” 4 Esther said, “If it pleases the king, may the king and Haman come this day to the banquet that I have prepared for him.”
5 Then the king said, “Bring Haman quickly that we may do [c]as Esther desires.” So the king and Haman came to the banquet which Esther had prepared. 6 [d]As they drank their wine at the banquet, the king said to Esther, “What is your petition, for it shall be granted to you. And what is your request? Even to half of the kingdom it shall be done.” 7 So Esther replied, “My petition and my request is: 8 if I have found favor in the sight of the king, and if it pleases the king to grant my petition and do [e]what I request, may the king and Haman come to the banquet which I will prepare for them, and tomorrow I will do [f]as the king says.”
Not only does the king extend the golden scepter to Esther (sparing her life), but he makes quite the show of favor by offering her anything she desires, up to half the kingdom. Whether it was the sheer bravery of her approach that must be prompted by dire circumstances, or something in her expression, the king knew all was not well with his queen.
Esther knows the stakes though, and so she wants to be sure she has the full favor of the king. So she invites him to dinner, which is, as some would say, the surest way to a man’s heart. After all, she is about to accuse his right-hand man of treachery, and the king will have to choose between the two.
This whole scenario is a contrast to the relationship we have with our King. That is, our God who is the King of the Universe, yet he is described as our father, and yet the Bible also likens our relationship with Jesus to a marriage relationship. However you want to look at it, Hebrews 4:16 tells us to approach God boldly “so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”
When we need something, or when something in our lives is worrying us, God asks us to draw near to him, and to cast our cares on him. We do not approach in fear, for much like Ahasuerus, but more so, our King loves us and would move heaven and earth for us. Indeed, he’s already done so, and now God welcomes us to approach his throne, anytime, no matter what we need, or even just to chat about our day.
So do not worry or fret that God will “smite” you for daring to approach him. And don’t think he isn’t interested in what you have to say, or that your problems are too small for him. God wants to be involved in our lives, like a father, but more. Like a spouse, but more. He is our king, but more than that, he desires our hearts in return for his.