Friday, April 29, 2005

Weary yet pursuing

Very tired at the moment. Like ridiculously so. Been studying the Book of Esther for the last few weeks and its been pretty hard work. I am just starting to break into the subject now and get an appreciation of the wonder of this little book. I've always enjoyed Esther as a story. It has all the elements of a gripping tale : a mighty king, a passionate romance, an evil Vizier, a wise leader, a beatiful princess, all blended with a dash of treachery, a splash of oriental charm and enough eastern obliqueness to entertain a Arabian shiek. Great stuff ... but I'm finding that digging any deeper than the story is hard work.

For starter, the book does not mention God once. In fact, no type of religious observance, utterance or words are mentioned at all (excluding fasting which is not necessarily a religous exercise). That makes it tricky given it's a Biblical book. Then there is the fact that no one quotes or references it. The rest of scripture gives neither validation or rejection to the Esther record. Finally(for this post anyway), I've found that all the bible commentaries are at odds with each other, on almost every verse. There appears to be little or no consensus among scholars on this book. A bit of an enigma all round really, and one that has consumed my time and my mind for the last month or so. Still, its a worthy exercise, I think. After all, seeking the mind of God hidden in His word, has to be the best use of time around, dont you think?

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