SERMON SUMMARY. This sermon served at least two purposes. First, to “remember that we are royalty.” The challenges that life throw our way sometimes bring us down, bring us doubt, and even bring us despair. Evil would love to see the family of God walking around with heads hung low. But we are reminded in 1 Peter 2:9 that God has made us as royalty in God’s kingdom. Kings, queens, princes and princesses do not walk with hung heads; we stand strong and erect – heads held high and ready for whatever comes. But, we also have to be humble. Christ reminds us that we are royalty “for a reason.” Never forget – as God told Abraham in Genesis – that we are blessed to be a blessing. Yes, we are part of God’s royal priesthood but our purpose is to be of service. True royalty is a position of service. And as we see in the narrative of Esther Chapter 4, God places us in situations when we need to stand up for God despite fears or discomfort. Remember you are royalty . . . for a reason – for such a time as this.
Royalty. God has set his people apart from the rest of the world – as royalty. The Kingdom of the world has a particular way that it carries itself. The Kingdom of God does as well. You are royalty. Read 1Peter 2:9 and reflect on who God says you are.
- What does this verse say about God’s people?
- How does this make you think about your life in Christ?
Esther. Remember, Esther was a woman, a Jew and an orphan. And yet, God chose her like he does her and placed her in a seat of royalty. She, like us, had a new life.
Crisis in the City (v1-3). In Esther 4:1-3, we see crisis in the life of one man and in the life of the people. Mordecai, Esther’s uncle, is in mourning because government has issued a law that will destroy his people. And, it is not just Mordecai but many of the people who are distraught and in despair.
- What do we see that shows us the despair of Mordecai and the people?
- What types of things today might cause this level of grief in our lives, the lives of our families, or the lives of our community?
Comfort in the Castle (v4-5). Esther has lived a blessed life – to a place of royalty. She has become queen. But, does she use her royalty … her position … to be of service to others? There are some troubling things in these verses.
- Esther seems disconnected from the uncle who raised her and from the challenges of her people. What do we see in verses 4-5 to show her disconnectedness?
- Does it surprise us that Esther is unaware of what is happening with her uncle or that her people are suffering under the laws of the land? Are we connected to “our people?”
- How do we feel about Esther sending a change of clothes to her uncle who was clearly in a time of deep and ritual grief and mourning?
Comfort In The Castle Pt 2 (v6-11). Esther was disconnected from the plight of her people but she does found out what was happening. Mordecai delivers the message and requests her help. Esther was not just disconnected from the condition of her people but she appeared to be too comfortable in her royal position. She forgot that God had placed her there for a reason.
- In verses 6-8, Mordecai communicates the condition of the people to Esther; they need her to utilize her royalty to help them. What is it that Mordecai asked her to do?
- What types of things do “our people” (family, community, etc.) seek from us? from church? Given where Esther came from, the plight of her people, and the position God has placed her in how would we expect her to respond?
- Are we surprised that she responds from the comfort of the castle and a place of fear? How do we respond?
Crisis and Calls. Sometimes in life we need to be confronted with a crisis to be reminded of God's call on our life. Mordecai, the elder, reminds Esther of God's positioning her for just such a time of this. He brings to the forefront a thought for Esther and for all of us – God places us in situations – as His representatives – so at the appropriate time we could stand up and represent Him with. “And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this.” What do we do?
- Reflect on the times in your life when you have been confronted with this similar situation – God is calling you out of your place of comfort in here to take action to help others. How did Esther respond? How should we respond?
As we go along this journey, be reminded that we are God's royal priesthood but even more so we serve the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. Jesus was and is supreme royalty . But, Jesus did not claim His position as one that was lofty and distant from His people. He did not come to be served but He came to serve His people. We must always remember that we are God's royalty and keep our heads held high. And we must always remember that we are royalty for a reason… to stand up for God “at such a time as this.”