Why Was God So Hidden?: The Context Behind Megillat Esther
1א
(ה) אִ֣ישׁ יְהוּדִ֔י הָיָ֖ה בְּשׁוּשַׁ֣ן הַבִּירָ֑ה וּשְׁמ֣וֹ מָרְדֳּכַ֗י בֶּ֣ן יָאִ֧יר בֶּן־שִׁמְעִ֛י בֶּן־קִ֖ישׁ אִ֥ישׁ יְמִינִֽי׃ (ו) אֲשֶׁ֤ר הָגְלָה֙ מִיר֣וּשָׁלַ֔יִם עִם־הַגֹּלָה֙ אֲשֶׁ֣ר הָגְלְתָ֔ה עִ֖ם יְכָנְיָ֣ה מֶֽלֶךְ־יְהוּדָ֑ה אֲשֶׁ֣ר הֶגְלָ֔ה נְבוּכַדְנֶאצַּ֖ר מֶ֥לֶךְ בָּבֶֽל׃ (ז) וַיְהִ֨י אֹמֵ֜ן אֶת־הֲדַסָּ֗ה הִ֤יא אֶסְתֵּר֙ בַּת־דֹּד֔וֹ כִּ֛י אֵ֥ין לָ֖הּ אָ֣ב וָאֵ֑ם וְהַנַּעֲרָ֤ה יְפַת־תֹּ֙אַר֙ וְטוֹבַ֣ת מַרְאֶ֔ה וּבְמ֤וֹת אָבִ֙יהָ֙ וְאִמָּ֔הּ לְקָחָ֧הּ מָרְדֳּכַ֛י ל֖וֹ לְבַֽת׃
(5) In the fortress Shushan lived a Jew by the name of Mordecai, son of Jair son of Shimei son of Kish, a Benjaminite. (6) [Kish] had been exiled from Jerusalem in the group that was carried into exile along with King Jeconiah of Judah, which had been driven into exile by King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon.— (7) He was foster father to Hadassah—that is, Esther—his uncle’s daughter, for she had neither father nor mother. The maiden was shapely and beautiful; and when her father and mother died, Mordecai adopted her as his own daughter.
2ב
אסתר מן התורה מנין (דברים לא, יח) ואנכי הסתר אסתיר מרדכי מן התורה מנין דכתיב (שמות ל, כג) מר דרור ומתרגמינן מירא דכיא:
They also asked Rav Mattana: From where in the Torah can one find an allusion to the events involving Esther? He replied to them that the verse states: “Then My anger shall be kindled against them on that day, and I will forsake them, and I will hide My face from them, and they shall be devoured, and many evils and troubles shall come upon them; so that they will say in that day: Have not these evils come upon us because our God is not among us? And I will hide [haster astir] My face on that day for all the evil which they shall have wrought, in that they are turned to other gods” (Deuteronomy 31:17–18). They also asked him: From where in the Torah can one find an allusion to the greatness bestowed upon Mordecai? He replied: As it is written with regard to the anointing oil in the Tabernacle: “And you shall also take the chief spices, of flowing myrrh [mor deror]” (Exodus 30:23); and we translate mor deror into Aramaic as: Mira dakhya, which resembles the name Mordecai.
3ג
(כז) וַיְהִי֩ בִשְׁלֹשִׁ֨ים וָשֶׁ֜בַע שָׁנָ֗ה לְגָלוּת֙ יְהוֹיָכִ֣ין מֶֽלֶךְ־יְהוּדָ֔ה בִּשְׁנֵ֤ים עָשָׂר֙ חֹ֔דֶשׁ בְּעֶשְׂרִ֥ים וְשִׁבְעָ֖ה לַחֹ֑דֶשׁ נָשָׂ֡א אֱוִ֣יל מְרֹדַךְ֩ מֶ֨לֶךְ בָּבֶ֜ל בִּשְׁנַ֣ת מָלְכ֗וֹ אֶת־רֹ֛אשׁ יְהוֹיָכִ֥ין מֶֽלֶךְ־יְהוּדָ֖ה מִבֵּ֥ית כֶּֽלֶא׃
(27) In the thirty-seventh year of the exile of King Jehoiachin of Judah, on the twenty-seventh day of the twelfth month, King Evilmerodach of Babylon, in the year he became king, took note of King Jehoiachin of Judah and released him from prison.
4ד
(א) בָּעֵ֣ת הַהִ֡וא שָׁלַ֡ח מְרֹדַ֣ךְ בַּ֠לְאֲדָן בֶּֽן־בַּלְאֲדָ֧ן מֶֽלֶךְ־בָּבֶ֛ל סְפָרִ֥ים וּמִנְחָ֖ה אֶל־חִזְקִיָּ֑הוּ וַיִּשְׁמַ֕ע כִּ֥י חָלָ֖ה וַֽיֶּחֱזָֽק׃
(1) At that time, Merodach-baladan son of Baladan, the king of Babylon, sent [envoys with] a letter and a gift to Hezekiah, for he had heard about his illness and recovery.
5ה
(כג) וְאַתָּ֣ה קַח־לְךָ֮ בְּשָׂמִ֣ים רֹאשׁ֒ מָר־דְּרוֹר֙ חֲמֵ֣שׁ מֵא֔וֹת וְקִנְּמָן־בֶּ֥שֶׂם מַחֲצִית֖וֹ חֲמִשִּׁ֣ים וּמָאתָ֑יִם וּקְנֵה־בֹ֖שֶׂם חֲמִשִּׁ֥ים וּמָאתָֽיִם׃
(23) Next take choice spices: five hundred weight of solidified myrrh, half as much—two hundred and fifty—of fragrant cinnamon, two hundred and fifty of aromatic cane,
6ו
(כ) כֹּ֥ה אָמַ֖ר יְהוָ֣ה צְבָא֑וֹת עֹ֚ד אֲשֶׁ֣ר יָבֹ֣אוּ עַמִּ֔ים וְיֹשְׁבֵ֖י עָרִ֥ים רַבּֽוֹת׃ (כא) וְֽהָלְכ֡וּ יֹשְׁבֵי֩ אַחַ֨ת אֶל־אַחַ֜ת לֵאמֹ֗ר נֵלְכָ֤ה הָלוֹךְ֙ לְחַלּוֹת֙ אֶת־פְּנֵ֣י יְהוָ֔ה וּלְבַקֵּ֖שׁ אֶת־יְהוָ֣ה צְבָא֑וֹת אֵלְכָ֖ה גַּם־אָֽנִי׃ (כב) וּבָ֨אוּ עַמִּ֤ים רַבִּים֙ וְגוֹיִ֣ם עֲצוּמִ֔ים לְבַקֵּ֛שׁ אֶת־יְהוָ֥ה צְבָא֖וֹת בִּירוּשָׁלִָ֑ם וּלְחַלּ֖וֹת אֶת־פְּנֵ֥י יְהוָֽה׃ (ס) (כג) כֹּ֥ה אָמַר֮ יְהוָ֣ה צְבָאוֹת֒ בַּיָּמִ֣ים הָהֵ֔מָּה אֲשֶׁ֤ר יַחֲזִ֙יקוּ֙ עֲשָׂרָ֣ה אֲנָשִׁ֔ים מִכֹּ֖ל לְשֹׁנ֣וֹת הַגּוֹיִ֑ם וְֽהֶחֱזִ֡יקוּ בִּכְנַף֩ אִ֨ישׁ יְהוּדִ֜י לֵאמֹ֗ר נֵֽלְכָה֙ עִמָּכֶ֔ם כִּ֥י שָׁמַ֖עְנוּ אֱלֹהִ֥ים עִמָּכֶֽם׃ (ס)
(20) Thus said the LORD of Hosts: Peoples and the inhabitants of many cities shall yet come— (21) the inhabitants of one shall go to the other and say, “Let us go and entreat the favor of the LORD, let us seek the LORD of Hosts; I will go, too.” (22) The many peoples and the multitude of nations shall come to seek the LORD of Hosts in Jerusalem and to entreat the favor of the LORD. (23) Thus said the LORD of Hosts: In those days, ten men from nations of every tongue will take hold—they will take hold of every Jew by a corner of his cloak and say, “Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you.”
7ז
(א) וַיֹּ֨אמֶר דָּוִ֤יד הַמֶּ֙לֶךְ֙ לְכָל־הַקָּהָ֔ל שְׁלֹמֹ֨ה בְנִ֥י אֶחָ֛ד בָּֽחַר־בּ֥וֹ אֱלֹהִ֖ים נַ֣עַר וָרָ֑ךְ וְהַמְּלָאכָ֣ה גְדוֹלָ֔ה כִּ֣י לֹ֤א לְאָדָם֙ הַבִּירָ֔ה כִּ֖י לַיהוָ֥ה אֱלֹהִֽים׃
(1) King David said to the entire assemblage, “God has chosen my son Solomon alone, an untried lad, although the work to be done is vast—for the temple is not for a man but for the LORD God.
8ח
(יט) וְלִשְׁלֹמֹ֣ה בְנִ֗י תֵּ֚ן לֵבָ֣ב שָׁלֵ֔ם לִשְׁמוֹר֙ מִצְוֺתֶ֔יךָ עֵדְוֺתֶ֖יךָ וְחֻקֶּ֑יךָ וְלַעֲשׂ֣וֹת הַכֹּ֔ל וְלִבְנ֖וֹת הַבִּירָ֥ה אֲשֶׁר־הֲכִינֽוֹתִי׃ (פ)
(19) As to my son Solomon, give him a whole heart to observe Your commandments, Your admonitions, and Your laws, and to fulfill them all, and to build this temple for which I have made provision.”
9ט

(א) וַיְהִ֖י בִּימֵ֣י אֲחַשְׁוֵר֑וֹשׁ ה֣וּא אֲחַשְׁוֵר֗וֹשׁ הַמֹּלֵךְ֙ מֵהֹ֣דּוּ וְעַד־כּ֔וּשׁ שֶׁ֛בַע וְעֶשְׂרִ֥ים וּמֵאָ֖ה מְדִינָֽה׃ (ב) בַּיָּמִ֖ים הָהֵ֑ם כְּשֶׁ֣בֶת ׀ הַמֶּ֣לֶךְ אֲחַשְׁוֵר֗וֹשׁ עַ֚ל כִּסֵּ֣א מַלְכוּת֔וֹ אֲשֶׁ֖ר בְּשׁוּשַׁ֥ן הַבִּירָֽה׃ (ג) בִּשְׁנַ֤ת שָׁלוֹשׁ֙ לְמָלְכ֔וֹ עָשָׂ֣ה מִשְׁתֶּ֔ה לְכָל־שָׂרָ֖יו וַעֲבָדָ֑יו חֵ֣יל ׀ פָּרַ֣ס וּמָדַ֗י הַֽפַּרְתְּמִ֛ים וְשָׂרֵ֥י הַמְּדִינ֖וֹת לְפָנָֽיו׃ (ד) בְּהַרְאֹת֗וֹ אֶת־עֹ֙שֶׁר֙ כְּב֣וֹד מַלְכוּת֔וֹ וְאֶ֨ת־יְקָ֔ר תִּפְאֶ֖רֶת גְּדוּלָּת֑וֹ יָמִ֣ים רַבִּ֔ים שְׁמוֹנִ֥ים וּמְאַ֖ת יֽוֹם׃ (ה) וּבִמְל֣וֹאת ׀ הַיָּמִ֣ים הָאֵ֗לֶּה עָשָׂ֣ה הַמֶּ֡לֶךְ לְכָל־הָעָ֣ם הַנִּמְצְאִים֩ בְּשׁוּשַׁ֨ן הַבִּירָ֜ה לְמִגָּ֧דוֹל וְעַד־קָטָ֛ן מִשְׁתֶּ֖ה שִׁבְעַ֣ת יָמִ֑ים בַּחֲצַ֕ר גִּנַּ֥ת בִּיתַ֖ן הַמֶּֽלֶךְ׃ (ו) ח֣וּר ׀ כַּרְפַּ֣ס וּתְכֵ֗לֶת אָחוּז֙ בְּחַבְלֵי־ב֣וּץ וְאַרְגָּמָ֔ן עַל־גְּלִ֥ילֵי כֶ֖סֶף וְעַמּ֣וּדֵי שֵׁ֑שׁ מִטּ֣וֹת ׀ זָהָ֣ב וָכֶ֗סֶף עַ֛ל רִֽצְפַ֥ת בַּהַט־וָשֵׁ֖שׁ וְדַ֥ר וְסֹחָֽרֶת׃ (ז) וְהַשְׁקוֹת֙ בִּכְלֵ֣י זָהָ֔ב וְכֵלִ֖ים מִכֵּלִ֣ים שׁוֹנִ֑ים וְיֵ֥ין מַלְכ֛וּת רָ֖ב כְּיַ֥ד הַמֶּֽלֶךְ׃ (ח) וְהַשְּׁתִיָּ֥ה כַדָּ֖ת אֵ֣ין אֹנֵ֑ס כִּי־כֵ֣ן ׀ יִסַּ֣ד הַמֶּ֗לֶךְ עַ֚ל כָּל־רַ֣ב בֵּית֔וֹ לַעֲשׂ֖וֹת כִּרְצ֥וֹן אִישׁ־וָאִֽישׁ׃ (ט) גַּ֚ם וַשְׁתִּ֣י הַמַּלְכָּ֔ה עָשְׂתָ֖ה מִשְׁתֵּ֣ה נָשִׁ֑ים בֵּ֚ית הַמַּלְכ֔וּת אֲשֶׁ֖ר לַמֶּ֥לֶךְ אֲחַשְׁוֵרֽוֹשׁ׃ (ס)

(1) It happened in the days of Ahasuerus—that Ahasuerus who reigned over a hundred and twenty-seven provinces from India to Ethiopia. (2) In those days, when King Ahasuerus occupied the royal throne in the fortress Shushan, (3) in the third year of his reign, he gave a banquet for all the officials and courtiers—the administration of Persia and Media, the nobles and the governors of the provinces in his service. (4) For no fewer than a hundred and eighty days he displayed the vast riches of his kingdom and the splendid glory of his majesty. (5) At the end of this period, the king gave a banquet for seven days in the court of the king’s palace garden for all the people who lived in the fortress Shushan, high and low alike. (6) [There were hangings of] white cotton and blue wool, caught up by cords of fine linen and purple wool to silver rods and alabaster columns; and there were couches of gold and silver on a pavement of marble, alabaster, mother-of-pearl, and mosaics. (7) Royal wine was served in abundance, as befits a king, in golden beakers, beakers of varied design. (8) And the rule for the drinking was, “No restrictions!” For the king had given orders to every palace steward to comply with each man’s wishes. (9) In addition, Queen Vashti gave a banquet for women, in the royal palace of King Ahasuerus.
10י

בְּהַרְאוֹתוֹ אֶת עוֹשֶׁר כְּבוֹד מַלְכוּתוֹ אָמַר רַבִּי יוֹסֵי בַּר חֲנִינָא מְלַמֵּד שֶׁלָּבַשׁ בִּגְדֵי כְהוּנָּה כְּתִיב הָכָא יְקָר תִּפְאֶרֶת גְּדוּלָּתוֹ וּכְתִיב הָתָם לְכָבוֹד וּלְתִפְאֶרֶת...

וְהַשְׁקוֹת בִּכְלֵי זָהָב וְכֵלִים מִכֵּלִים שׁוֹנִים מְשׁוּנִּים מִיבְּעֵי לֵיהּ אָמַר רָבָא יָצְתָה בַּת קוֹל וְאָמְרָה לָהֶם רִאשׁוֹנִים כָּלוּ מִפְּנֵי כֵלַי וְאַתֶּם שׁוֹנִים בָּהֶם וְיֵין מַלְכוּת רָב אָמַר רַב מְלַמֵּד שֶׁכׇּל אֶחָד וְאֶחָד הִשְׁקָהוּ יַיִן שֶׁגָּדוֹל הֵימֶנּוּ בְּשָׁנִים וְהַשְּׁתִיָּה כַדָּת (אֵין אוֹנֵס) מַאי כַּדָּת אָמַר רַבִּי חָנָן מִשּׁוּם רַבִּי מֵאִיר כְּדָת שֶׁל תּוֹרָה מָה דָּת שֶׁל תּוֹרָה אֲכִילָה מְרוּבָּה מִשְּׁתִיָּה אַף סְעוּדָּתוֹ שֶׁל אוֹתוֹ רָשָׁע אֲכִילָה מְרוּבָּה מִשְּׁתִיָּה

The verse states: “When he showed the riches of his glorious [kevod] kingdom and the honor of his majestic [tiferet] greatness” (Esther 1:4). Rabbi Yosei bar Ḥanina said: This teaches that Ahasuerus wore the priestly vestments. Proof for this assertion may be adduced from the fact that the same terms are written with regard to the priestly vestments, as it is written here: “The riches of his glorious [kevod] kingdom and the honor of his majestic [tiferet] greatness.” And it is written there, with regard to the priestly garments: “For glory [kavod] and for majesty [tiferet]” (Exodus 28:2)...

The verse states: “And they gave them drink in vessels of gold, the vessels being diverse [shonim] from one another” (Esther 1:7). The Gemara asks: Why does the verse use the term shonim to express that they are different? It should have said the more proper term meshunim. Rava said: A Divine Voice issued forth and said to them: The early ones, referring to Belshazzar and his people, were destroyed because they used these vessels, the vessels of the Temple, and yet you use them again [shonim]? The verse continues: “And royal wine in abundance [rav]” (Esther 1:7). Rav said: This teaches that each and every guest at the feast was poured well-aged wine that was older [rav] than himself in years. The verse states: “And the drinking was according to the law; none did compel” (Esther 1:8). The Gemara asks: What is the meaning of “according to the law”? Rabbi Ḥanan said in the name of Rabbi Meir: The drinking was according to the law of the Torah. Just as, according to the law of the Torah, with regard to offerings, the food sacrificed on the altar is greater in quantity than the drink, for the wine libation is quantitatively much smaller than the sacrificial offerings it accompanies, so too, at the feast of that wicked man, the food was greater in quantity than the drink.

11יא

הָיָה רַבִּי יוֹסֵי אוֹמֵר אֵימָתַי הִתְחִילוּ מִלּוּאִים, בְּעֶשְׂרִים וּשְׁלשָׁה בַּאֲדָר, וּבְאֶחָד בְּנִיסָן שָׁלְמוּ יְמֵי הַמִּלּוּאִים, וְכָל שִׁבְעַת יְמֵי הַמִּלּוּאִים הָיָה משֶׁה מַעֲמִיד אֶת הַמִּשְׁכָּן, וְכָל בֹּקֶר וָבֹקֶר מַקְרִיב קָרְבְּנוֹתָיו עָלָיו...

Rebbe Yosie used to say when did the inauguration of the Mishkan start? On the 23rd of Adar, and then 7 days of initiation. All 7 days Moshe would erect the Mishkan, and every morning and morning he would offer sacrifices on it...

12יב
(י) כִּֽי־כֹה֙ אָמַ֣ר יְהוָ֔ה כִּ֠י לְפִ֞י מְלֹ֧את לְבָבֶ֛ל שִׁבְעִ֥ים שָׁנָ֖ה אֶפְקֹ֣ד אֶתְכֶ֑ם וַהֲקִמֹתִ֤י עֲלֵיכֶם֙ אֶת־דְּבָרִ֣י הַטּ֔וֹב לְהָשִׁ֣יב אֶתְכֶ֔ם אֶל־הַמָּק֖וֹם הַזֶּֽה׃ (יא) כִּי֩ אָנֹכִ֨י יָדַ֜עְתִּי אֶת־הַמַּחֲשָׁבֹ֗ת אֲשֶׁ֧ר אָנֹכִ֛י חֹשֵׁ֥ב עֲלֵיכֶ֖ם נְאֻם־יְהוָ֑ה מַחְשְׁב֤וֹת שָׁלוֹם֙ וְלֹ֣א לְרָעָ֔ה לָתֵ֥ת לָכֶ֖ם אַחֲרִ֥ית וְתִקְוָֽה׃ (יב) וּקְרָאתֶ֤ם אֹתִי֙ וַֽהֲלַכְתֶּ֔ם וְהִתְפַּלַּלְתֶּ֖ם אֵלָ֑י וְשָׁמַעְתִּ֖י אֲלֵיכֶֽם׃ (יג) וּבִקַּשְׁתֶּ֥ם אֹתִ֖י וּמְצָאתֶ֑ם כִּ֥י תִדְרְשֻׁ֖נִי בְּכָל־לְבַבְכֶֽם׃ (יד) וְנִמְצֵ֣אתִי לָכֶם֮ נְאֻם־יְהוָה֒ וְשַׁבְתִּ֣י אֶת־שביתכם [שְׁבוּתְכֶ֗ם] וְקִבַּצְתִּ֣י אֶ֠תְכֶם מִֽכָּל־הַגּוֹיִ֞ם וּמִכָּל־הַמְּקוֹמ֗וֹת אֲשֶׁ֨ר הִדַּ֧חְתִּי אֶתְכֶ֛ם שָׁ֖ם נְאֻם־יְהוָ֑ה וַהֲשִׁבֹתִ֣י אֶתְכֶ֔ם אֶל־הַ֨מָּק֔וֹם אֲשֶׁר־הִגְלֵ֥יתִי אֶתְכֶ֖ם מִשָּֽׁם׃
(10) For thus said the LORD: When Babylon’s seventy years are over, I will take note of you, and I will fulfill to you My promise of favor—to bring you back to this place. (11) For I am mindful of the plans I have made concerning you—declares the LORD—plans for your welfare, not for disaster, to give you a hopeful future. (12) When you call Me, and come and pray to Me, I will give heed to you. (13) You will search for Me and find Me, if only you seek Me wholeheartedly. (14) I will be at hand for you—declares the LORD—and I will restore your fortunes. And I will gather you from all the nations and from all the places to which I have banished you—declares the LORD—and I will bring you back to the place from which I have exiled you.
13יג
בַּיָּמִים הָהֵם כְּשֶׁבֶת הַמֶּלֶךְ וּכְתִיב בָּתְרֵיהּ בִּשְׁנַת שָׁלֹשׁ לְמׇלְכוֹ אָמַר רָבָא מַאי כְּשֶׁבֶת לְאַחַר שֶׁנִּתְיַישְּׁבָה דַּעְתּוֹ אָמַר בֵּלְשַׁצַּר חַשֵּׁב וּטְעָה אֲנָא חָשֵׁיבְנָא וְלָא טָעֵינָא מַאי הִיא דִּכְתִיב כִּי לְפִי מְלֹאת לְבָבֶל שִׁבְעִים שָׁנָה אֶפְקוֹד אֶתְכֶם וּכְתִיב לְמַלֹּאות לְחׇרְבוֹת יְרוּשָׁלִַם שִׁבְעִים שָׁנָה חַשֵּׁוב אַרְבְּעִין וַחֲמֵשׁ דִּנְבוּכַדְנֶצַּר וְעֶשְׂרִים וּתְלָת דֶּאֱוִיל מְרוֹדַךְ וְתַרְתֵּי דִּידֵיהּ הָא שִׁבְעִים אַפֵּיק מָאנֵי דְּבֵי מַקְדְּשָׁא וְאִשְׁתַּמַּשׁ בְּהוּ
§ The second verse in Esther states: “In those days when the king Ahasuerus sat on the throne of his kingdom” (Esther 1:2), implying that the events to follow took place during the first year of his reign; and one verse afterward it is written: “In the third year of his reign” (Esther 1:3), indicating that it was the third year, not the first. Rava said: There is no contradiction. What is the meaning of “when he sat” [keshevet]? It is intended to indicate that he acted not immediately upon his rise to the throne, but rather after his mind was settled [shenityasheva], and he overcame his anxiety and worry with regard to the redemption of the Jewish people. He said to himself as follows: Belshazzar, the king of Babylonia, calculated and erred with regard to the Jewish people’s redemption. I too will calculate, but I will not err. The Gemara explains: What is this calculation? As it is written with regard to Jeremiah’s prophecy of a return to Eretz Yisrael: “After seventy years are accomplished for Babylonia I will remember you and perform My good word toward you, enabling you to return to this place” (Jeremiah 29:10), and elsewhere it is written in a slightly different formulation: “In the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, meditated in the books, over the number of the years, which the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah the prophet, that He would accomplish for the desolations of Jerusalem seventy years” (Daniel 9:2). He, Belshazzar, calculated as follows: Forty-five years of Nebuchadnezzar, and twenty-three of Evil-merodach, and two of his own, for a total of seventy years that had passed without redemption. He was therefore certain that Jeremiah’s prophecy would no longer be fulfilled, and he therefore said: I will take out the vessels of the Holy Temple and use them.
14יד
(יב) וַיִּקָּרְאוּ֩ סֹפְרֵ֨י הַמֶּ֜לֶךְ בַּחֹ֣דֶשׁ הָרִאשׁ֗וֹן בִּשְׁלוֹשָׁ֨ה עָשָׂ֣ר יוֹם֮ בּוֹ֒ וַיִּכָּתֵ֣ב כְּֽכָל־אֲשֶׁר־צִוָּ֣ה הָמָ֡ן אֶ֣ל אֲחַשְׁדַּרְפְּנֵֽי־הַ֠מֶּלֶךְ וְֽאֶל־הַפַּח֞וֹת אֲשֶׁ֣ר ׀ עַל־מְדִינָ֣ה וּמְדִינָ֗ה וְאֶל־שָׂ֤רֵי עַם֙ וָעָ֔ם מְדִינָ֤ה וּמְדִינָה֙ כִּכְתָבָ֔הּ וְעַ֥ם וָעָ֖ם כִּלְשׁוֹנ֑וֹ בְּשֵׁ֨ם הַמֶּ֤לֶךְ אֲחַשְׁוֵרֹשׁ֙ נִכְתָּ֔ב וְנֶחְתָּ֖ם בְּטַבַּ֥עַת הַמֶּֽלֶךְ׃
(12) On the thirteenth day of the first month, the king’s scribes were summoned and a decree was issued, as Haman directed, to the king’s satraps, to the governors of every province, and to the officials of every people, to every province in its own script and to every people in its own language. The orders were issued in the name of King Ahasuerus and sealed with the king’s signet.
15טו
(ט) וַיִּקָּרְא֣וּ סֹפְרֵֽי־הַמֶּ֣לֶךְ בָּֽעֵת־הַ֠הִיא בַּחֹ֨דֶשׁ הַשְּׁלִישִׁ֜י הוּא־חֹ֣דֶשׁ סִיוָ֗ן בִּשְׁלוֹשָׁ֣ה וְעֶשְׂרִים֮ בּוֹ֒ וַיִּכָּתֵ֣ב כְּֽכָל־אֲשֶׁר־צִוָּ֣ה מָרְדֳּכַ֣י אֶל־הַיְּהוּדִ֡ים וְאֶ֣ל הָאֲחַשְׁדַּרְפְּנִֽים־וְהַפַּחוֹת֩ וְשָׂרֵ֨י הַמְּדִינ֜וֹת אֲשֶׁ֣ר ׀ מֵהֹ֣דּוּ וְעַד־כּ֗וּשׁ שֶׁ֣בַע וְעֶשְׂרִ֤ים וּמֵאָה֙ מְדִינָ֔ה מְדִינָ֤ה וּמְדִינָה֙ כִּכְתָבָ֔הּ וְעַ֥ם וָעָ֖ם כִּלְשֹׁנ֑וֹ וְאֶ֨ל־הַיְּהוּדִ֔ים כִּכְתָבָ֖ם וְכִלְשׁוֹנָֽם׃
(9) So the king’s scribes were summoned at that time, on the twenty-third day of the third month, that is, the month of Sivan; and letters were written, at Mordecai’s dictation, to the Jews and to the satraps, the governors and the officials of the one hundred and twenty-seven provinces from India to Ethiopia: to every province in its own script and to every people in its own language, and to the Jews in their own script and language.
16טז
(ו) וּבְמַלְכוּת֙ אֲחַשְׁוֵר֔וֹשׁ בִּתְחִלַּ֖ת מַלְכוּת֑וֹ כָּתְב֣וּ שִׂטְנָ֔ה עַל־יֹשְׁבֵ֥י יְהוּדָ֖ה וִירוּשָׁלִָֽם׃ (ס) (ז) וּבִימֵ֣י אַרְתַּחְשַׁ֗שְׂתָּא כָּתַ֨ב בִּשְׁלָ֜ם מִתְרְדָ֤ת טָֽבְאֵל֙ וּשְׁאָ֣ר כנותו [כְּנָוֺתָ֔יו] עַל־ארתחששתא [אַרְתַּחְשַׁ֖שְׂתְּ] מֶ֣לֶךְ פָּרָ֑ס וּכְתָב֙ הַֽנִּשְׁתְּוָ֔ן כָּת֥וּב אֲרָמִ֖ית וּמְתֻרְגָּ֥ם אֲרָמִֽית׃ (פ) (ח) רְח֣וּם בְּעֵל־טְעֵ֗ם וְשִׁמְשַׁי֙ סָֽפְרָ֔א כְּתַ֛בוּ אִגְּרָ֥ה חֲדָ֖ה עַל־יְרוּשְׁלֶ֑ם לְאַרְתַּחְשַׁ֥שְׂתְּא מַלְכָּ֖א כְּנֵֽמָא׃ (ט) אֱדַ֜יִן רְח֣וּם בְּעֵל־טְעֵ֗ם וְשִׁמְשַׁי֙ סָֽפְרָ֔א וּשְׁאָ֖ר כְּנָוָתְה֑וֹן דִּ֠ינָיֵא וַאֲפַרְסַתְכָיֵ֞א טַרְפְּלָיֵ֣א אֲפָֽרְסָיֵ֗א ארכוי [אַרְכְּוָיֵ֤א] בָבְלָיֵא֙ שֽׁוּשַׁנְכָיֵ֔א דהוא [דֶּהָיֵ֖א] עֵלְמָיֵֽא׃ (י) וּשְׁאָ֣ר אֻמַּיָּ֗א דִּ֤י הַגְלִי֙ אָסְנַפַּר֙ רַבָּ֣א וְיַקִּירָ֔א וְהוֹתֵ֣ב הִמּ֔וֹ בְּקִרְיָ֖ה דִּ֣י שָׁמְרָ֑יִן וּשְׁאָ֥ר עֲבַֽר־נַהֲרָ֖ה וּכְעֶֽנֶת׃ (יא) דְּנָה֙ פַּרְשֶׁ֣גֶן אִגַּרְתָּ֔א דִּ֚י שְׁלַ֣חוּ עֲל֔וֹהִי עַל־אַרְתַּחְשַׁ֖שְׂתְּא מַלְכָּ֑א עַבְדָ֛יךְ אֱנָ֥שׁ עֲבַֽר־נַהֲרָ֖ה וּכְעֶֽנֶת׃ (פ) (יב) יְדִ֙יעַ֙ לֶהֱוֵ֣א לְמַלְכָּ֔א דִּ֣י יְהוּדָיֵ֗א דִּ֤י סְלִ֙קוּ֙ מִן־לְוָתָ֔ךְ עֲלֶ֥ינָא אֲת֖וֹ לִירוּשְׁלֶ֑ם קִרְיְתָ֨א מָֽרָדְתָּ֤א ובאישתא [וּבִֽישְׁתָּא֙] בָּנַ֔יִן ושורי [וְשׁוּרַיָּ֣א] אשכללו [שַׁכְלִ֔ילוּ] וְאֻשַּׁיָּ֖א יַחִֽיטוּ׃ (יג) כְּעַ֗ן יְדִ֙יעַ֙ לֶהֱוֵ֣א לְמַלְכָּ֔א דִּ֠י הֵ֣ן קִרְיְתָ֥א דָךְ֙ תִּתְבְּנֵ֔א וְשׁוּרַיָּ֖ה יִֽשְׁתַּכְלְל֑וּן מִנְדָּֽה־בְל֤וֹ וַהֲלָךְ֙ לָ֣א יִנְתְּנ֔וּן וְאַפְּתֹ֥ם מַלְכִ֖ים תְּהַנְזִֽק׃ (יד) כְּעַ֗ן כָּל־קֳבֵל֙ דִּֽי־מְלַ֤ח הֵֽיכְלָא֙ מְלַ֔חְנָא וְעַרְוַ֣ת מַלְכָּ֔א לָ֥א אֲ‍ֽרִֽיךְ לַ֖נָא לְמֶֽחֱזֵ֑א עַ֨ל־דְּנָ֔ה שְׁלַ֖חְנָא וְהוֹדַ֥עְנָא לְמַלְכָּֽא׃ (טו) דִּ֡י יְבַקַּר֩ בִּֽסְפַר־דָּכְרָ֨נַיָּ֜א דִּ֣י אֲבָהָתָ֗ךְ וּ֠תְהַשְׁכַּח בִּסְפַ֣ר דָּכְרָנַיָּא֮ וְתִנְדַּע֒ דִּי֩ קִרְיְתָ֨א דָ֜ךְ קִרְיָ֣א מָֽרָדָ֗א וּֽמְהַנְזְקַ֤ת מַלְכִין֙ וּמְדִנָ֔ן וְאֶשְׁתַּדּוּר֙ עָבְדִ֣ין בְּגַוַּ֔הּ מִן־יוֹמָ֖ת עָלְמָ֑א עַ֨ל־דְּנָ֔ה קִרְיְתָ֥א דָ֖ךְ הָֽחָרְבַֽת׃ (טז) מְהוֹדְעִ֤ין אֲנַ֙חְנָה֙ לְמַלְכָּ֔א דִּ֠י הֵ֣ן קִרְיְתָ֥א דָךְ֙ תִּתְבְּנֵ֔א וְשׁוּרַיָּ֖ה יִֽשְׁתַּכְלְל֑וּן לָקֳבֵ֣ל דְּנָ֔ה חֲלָק֙ בַּעֲבַ֣ר נַהֲרָ֔א לָ֥א אִיתַ֖י לָֽךְ׃ (פ)
(6) And in the reign of Ahasuerus, at the start of his reign, they drew up an accusation against the inhabitants of Judah and Jerusalem. (7) And in the time of Artaxerxes, Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of their colleagues wrote to King Artaxerxes of Persia, a letter written in Aramaic and translated. Aramaic: (8) Rehum the commissioner and Shimshai the scribe wrote a letter concerning Jerusalem to King Artaxerxes as follows: ( (9) Then Rehum the commissioner and Shimshai the scribe, and the rest of their colleagues, the judges, officials, officers, and overseers, the men of Erech, and of Babylon, and of Susa—that is the Elamites— (10) and other peoples whom the great and glorious Osnappar deported and settled in the city of Samaria and the rest of the province Beyond the River [wrote]—and now (11) this is the text of the letter which they sent to him:)—“To King Artaxerxes [from] your servants, men of the province Beyond the River. And now (12) be it known to the king that the Jews who came up from you to us have reached Jerusalem and are rebuilding that rebellious and wicked city; they are completing the walls and repairing the foundation. (13) Now be it known to the king that if this city is rebuilt and the walls completed, they will not pay tribute, poll-tax, or land-tax, and in the end it will harm the kingdom. (14) Now since we eat the salt of the palace, and it is not right that we should see the king dishonored, we have written to advise the king [of this] (15) so that you may search the records of your fathers and find in the records and know that this city is a rebellious city, harmful to kings and states. Sedition has been rife in it from early times; on that account this city was destroyed. (16) We advise the king that if this city is rebuilt and its walls are completed, you will no longer have any portion in the province Beyond the River.”
17יז
(א) וּבִשְׁנַ֣ת אַחַ֗ת לְכ֙וֹרֶשׁ֙ מֶ֣לֶךְ פָּרַ֔ס לִכְל֥וֹת דְּבַר־יְהוָ֖ה מִפִּ֣י יִרְמְיָ֑ה הֵעִ֣יר יְהוָ֗ה אֶת־ר֙וּחַ֙ כֹּ֣רֶשׁ מֶֽלֶךְ־פָּרַ֔ס וַיַּֽעֲבֶר־קוֹל֙ בְּכָל־מַלְכוּת֔וֹ וְגַם־בְּמִכְתָּ֖ב לֵאמֹֽר׃ (ב) כֹּ֣ה אָמַ֗ר כֹּ֚רֶשׁ מֶ֣לֶךְ פָּרַ֔ס כֹּ֚ל מַמְלְכ֣וֹת הָאָ֔רֶץ נָ֣תַן לִ֔י יְהוָ֖ה אֱלֹהֵ֣י הַשָּׁמָ֑יִם וְהֽוּא־פָקַ֤ד עָלַי֙ לִבְנֽוֹת־ל֣וֹ בַ֔יִת בִּירוּשָׁלִַ֖ם אֲשֶׁ֥ר בִּֽיהוּדָֽה׃ (ג) מִֽי־בָכֶ֣ם מִכָּל־עַמּ֗וֹ יְהִ֤י אֱלֹהָיו֙ עִמּ֔וֹ וְיַ֕עַל לִירוּשָׁלִַ֖ם אֲשֶׁ֣ר בִּיהוּדָ֑ה וְיִ֗בֶן אֶת־בֵּ֤ית יְהוָה֙ אֱלֹהֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל ה֥וּא הָאֱלֹהִ֖ים אֲשֶׁ֥ר בִּירוּשָׁלִָֽם׃ (ד) וְכָל־הַנִּשְׁאָ֗ר מִֽכָּל־הַמְּקֹמוֹת֮ אֲשֶׁ֣ר ה֣וּא גָֽר־שָׁם֒ יְנַשְּׂא֙וּהוּ֙ אַנְשֵׁ֣י מְקֹמ֔וֹ בְּכֶ֥סֶף וּבְזָהָ֖ב וּבִרְכ֣וּשׁ וּבִבְהֵמָ֑ה עִם־הַ֨נְּדָבָ֔ה לְבֵ֥ית הָאֱלֹהִ֖ים אֲשֶׁ֥ר בִּירוּשָׁלִָֽם׃ (ה) וַיָּק֜וּמוּ רָאשֵׁ֣י הָאָב֗וֹת לִֽיהוּדָה֙ וּבִנְיָמִ֔ן וְהַכֹּהֲנִ֖ים וְהַלְוִיִּ֑ם לְכֹ֨ל הֵעִ֤יר הָאֱלֹהִים֙ אֶת־רוּח֔וֹ לַעֲל֣וֹת לִבְנ֔וֹת אֶת־בֵּ֥ית יְהוָ֖ה אֲשֶׁ֥ר בִּירוּשָׁלִָֽם׃ (ו) וְכָל־סְבִיבֹֽתֵיהֶם֙ חִזְּק֣וּ בִֽידֵיהֶ֔ם בִּכְלֵי־כֶ֧סֶף בַּזָּהָ֛ב בָּרְכ֥וּשׁ וּבַבְּהֵמָ֖ה וּבַמִּגְדָּנ֑וֹת לְבַ֖ד עַל־כָּל־הִתְנַדֵּֽב׃ (ס) (ז) וְהַמֶּ֣לֶךְ כּ֔וֹרֶשׁ הוֹצִ֖יא אֶת־כְּלֵ֣י בֵית־יְהוָ֑ה אֲשֶׁ֨ר הוֹצִ֤יא נְבֽוּכַדְנֶצַּר֙ מִיר֣וּשָׁלִַ֔ם וַֽיִּתְּנֵ֖ם בְּבֵ֥ית אֱלֹהָֽיו׃ (ח) וַיּֽוֹצִיאֵ֗ם כּ֚וֹרֶשׁ מֶ֣לֶךְ פָּרַ֔ס עַל־יַ֖ד מִתְרְדָ֣ת הַגִּזְבָּ֑ר וַֽיִּסְפְּרֵם֙ לְשֵׁשְׁבַּצַּ֔ר הַנָּשִׂ֖יא לִיהוּדָֽה׃ (ט) וְאֵ֖לֶּה מִסְפָּרָ֑ם אֲגַרְטְלֵ֨י זָהָ֜ב שְׁלֹשִׁ֗ים אֲגַרְטְלֵי־כֶ֙סֶף֙ אָ֔לֶף מַחֲלָפִ֖ים תִּשְׁעָ֥ה וְעֶשְׂרִֽים׃ (ס)
(1) In the first year of King Cyrus of Persia, when the word of the LORD spoken by Jeremiah was fulfilled, the LORD roused the spirit of King Cyrus of Persia to issue a proclamation throughout his realm by word of mouth and in writing as follows: (2) “Thus said King Cyrus of Persia: The LORD God of Heaven has given me all the kingdoms of the earth and has charged me with building Him a house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. (3) Anyone of you of all His people—may his God be with him, and let him go up to Jerusalem that is in Judah and build the House of the LORD God of Israel, the God that is in Jerusalem; (4) and all who stay behind, wherever he may be living, let the people of his place assist him with silver, gold, goods, and livestock, besides the freewill offering to the House of God that is in Jerusalem.” (5) So the chiefs of the clans of Judah and Benjamin, and the priests and Levites, all whose spirit had been roused by God, got ready to go up to build the House of the LORD that is in Jerusalem. (6) All their neighbors supported them with silver vessels, with gold, with goods, with livestock, and with precious objects, besides what had been given as a freewill offering. (7) King Cyrus of Persia released the vessels of the LORD’s house which Nebuchadnezzar had taken away from Jerusalem and had put in the house of his god. (8) These King Cyrus of Persia released through the office of Mithredath the treasurer, who gave an inventory of them to Sheshbazzar the prince of Judah. (9) This is the inventory: 30 gold basins, 1,000 silver basins, 29 knives,
18יח
(כ) וַיֶּ֛גֶל הַשְּׁאֵרִ֥ית מִן־הַחֶ֖רֶב אֶל־בָּבֶ֑ל וַֽיִּהְיוּ־ל֤וֹ וּלְבָנָיו֙ לַעֲבָדִ֔ים עַד־מְלֹ֖ךְ מַלְכ֥וּת פָּרָֽס׃ (כא) לְמַלֹּ֤אות דְּבַר־יְהוָה֙ בְּפִ֣י יִרְמְיָ֔הוּ עַד־רָצְתָ֥ה הָאָ֖רֶץ אֶת־שַׁבְּתוֹתֶ֑יהָ כָּל־יְמֵ֤י הָשַּׁמָּה֙ שָׁבָ֔תָה לְמַלֹּ֖אות שִׁבְעִ֥ים שָׁנָֽה׃ (פ) (כב) וּבִשְׁנַ֣ת אַחַ֗ת לְכ֙וֹרֶשׁ֙ מֶ֣לֶךְ פָּרַ֔ס לִכְל֥וֹת דְּבַר־יְהוָ֖ה בְּפִ֣י יִרְמְיָ֑הוּ הֵעִ֣יר יְהוָ֗ה אֶת־ר֙וּחַ֙ כּ֣וֹרֶשׁ מֶֽלֶךְ־פָּרַ֔ס וַיַּֽעֲבֶר־קוֹל֙ בְּכָל־מַלְכוּת֔וֹ וְגַם־בְּמִכְתָּ֖ב לֵאמֹֽר׃ (ס) (כג) כֹּה־אָמַ֞ר כּ֣וֹרֶשׁ ׀ מֶ֣לֶךְ פָּרַ֗ס כָּל־מַמְלְכ֤וֹת הָאָ֙רֶץ֙ נָ֣תַן לִ֗י יְהוָה֙ אֱלֹהֵ֣י הַשָּׁמַ֔יִם וְהֽוּא־פָקַ֤ד עָלַי֙ לִבְנֽוֹת־ל֣וֹ בַ֔יִת בִּירוּשָׁלִַ֖ם אֲשֶׁ֣ר בִּֽיהוּדָ֑ה מִֽי־בָכֶ֣ם מִכָּל־עַמּ֗וֹ יְהוָ֧ה אֱלֹהָ֛יו עִמּ֖וֹ וְיָֽעַל׃
(20) Those who survived the sword he exiled to Babylon, and they became his and his sons’ servants till the rise of the Persian kingdom, (21) in fulfillment of the word of the LORD spoken by Jeremiah, until the land paid back its sabbaths; as long as it lay desolate it kept sabbath, till seventy years were completed. (22) And in the first year of King Cyrus of Persia, when the word of the LORD spoken by Jeremiah was fulfilled, the LORD roused the spirit of King Cyrus of Persia to issue a proclamation throughout his realm by word of mouth and in writing, as follows: (23) “Thus said King Cyrus of Persia: The LORD God of Heaven has given me all the kingdoms of the earth, and has charged me with building Him a House in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Any one of you of all His people, the LORD his God be with him and let him go up.”
19יט
(טז) וַיֹּ֤אמֶר יְהוָה֙ אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֔ה הִנְּךָ֥ שֹׁכֵ֖ב עִם־אֲבֹתֶ֑יךָ וְקָם֩ הָעָ֨ם הַזֶּ֜ה וְזָנָ֣ה ׀ אַחֲרֵ֣י ׀ אֱלֹהֵ֣י נֵֽכַר־הָאָ֗רֶץ אֲשֶׁ֨ר ה֤וּא בָא־שָׁ֙מָּה֙ בְּקִרְבּ֔וֹ וַעֲזָבַ֕נִי וְהֵפֵר֙ אֶת־בְּרִיתִ֔י אֲשֶׁ֥ר כָּרַ֖תִּי אִתּֽוֹ׃ (יז) וְחָרָ֣ה אַפִּ֣י ב֣וֹ בַיּוֹם־הַ֠הוּא וַעֲזַבְתִּ֞ים וְהִסְתַּרְתִּ֨י פָנַ֤י מֵהֶם֙ וְהָיָ֣ה לֶֽאֱכֹ֔ל וּמְצָאֻ֛הוּ רָע֥וֹת רַבּ֖וֹת וְצָר֑וֹת וְאָמַר֙ בַּיּ֣וֹם הַה֔וּא הֲלֹ֗א עַ֣ל כִּֽי־אֵ֤ין אֱלֹהַי֙ בְּקִרְבִּ֔י מְצָא֖וּנִי הָרָע֥וֹת הָאֵֽלֶּה׃ (יח) וְאָנֹכִ֗י הַסְתֵּ֨ר אַסְתִּ֤יר פָּנַי֙ בַּיּ֣וֹם הַה֔וּא עַ֥ל כָּל־הָרָעָ֖ה אֲשֶׁ֣ר עָשָׂ֑ה כִּ֣י פָנָ֔ה אֶל־אֱלֹהִ֖ים אֲחֵרִֽים׃ (יט) וְעַתָּ֗ה כִּתְב֤וּ לָכֶם֙ אֶת־הַשִּׁירָ֣ה הַזֹּ֔את וְלַמְּדָ֥הּ אֶת־בְּנֵי־יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל שִׂימָ֣הּ בְּפִיהֶ֑ם לְמַ֨עַן תִּהְיֶה־לִּ֜י הַשִּׁירָ֥ה הַזֹּ֛את לְעֵ֖ד בִּבְנֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵֽל׃

(16) The LORD said to Moses: You are soon to lie with your fathers. This people will thereupon go astray after the alien gods in their midst, in the land that they are about to enter; they will forsake Me and break My covenant that I made with them. (17) Then My anger will flare up against them, and I will abandon them and hide My countenance from them. They shall be ready prey; and many evils and troubles shall befall them. And they shall say on that day, “Surely it is because our God is not in our midst that these evils have befallen us.” (18) Yet I will keep My countenance hidden on that day, because of all the evil they have done in turning to other gods. (19) Therefore, write down this poem and teach it to the people of Israel; put it in their mouths, in order that this poem may be My witness against the people of Israel.

20כ
(לו) כִּֽי־יָדִ֤ין יְהוָה֙ עַמּ֔וֹ וְעַל־עֲבָדָ֖יו יִתְנֶחָ֑ם כִּ֤י יִרְאֶה֙ כִּי־אָ֣זְלַת יָ֔ד וְאֶ֖פֶס עָצ֥וּר וְעָזֽוּב׃ (לז) וְאָמַ֖ר אֵ֣י אֱלֹהֵ֑ימוֹ צ֖וּר חָסָ֥יוּ בֽוֹ׃ (לח) אֲשֶׁ֨ר חֵ֤לֶב זְבָחֵ֙ימוֹ֙ יֹאכֵ֔לוּ יִשְׁתּ֖וּ יֵ֣ין נְסִיכָ֑ם יָק֙וּמוּ֙ וְיַעְזְרֻכֶ֔ם יְהִ֥י עֲלֵיכֶ֖ם סִתְרָֽה׃ (לט) רְא֣וּ ׀ עַתָּ֗ה כִּ֣י אֲנִ֤י אֲנִי֙ ה֔וּא וְאֵ֥ין אֱלֹהִ֖ים עִמָּדִ֑י אֲנִ֧י אָמִ֣ית וַאֲחַיֶּ֗ה מָחַ֙צְתִּי֙ וַאֲנִ֣י אֶרְפָּ֔א וְאֵ֥ין מִיָּדִ֖י מַצִּֽיל׃
(36) For the LORD will vindicate His people And take revenge for His servants, When He sees that their might is gone, And neither bond nor free is left. (37) He will say: Where are their gods, The rock in whom they sought refuge, (38) Who ate the fat of their offerings And drank their libation wine? Let them rise up to your help, And let them be a shield unto you! (39) See, then, that I, I am He; There is no god beside Me. I deal death and give life; I wounded and I will heal: None can deliver from My hand.
21כא
(ל) וַיִּשְׁלַ֨ח סְפָרִ֜ים אֶל־כָּל־הַיְּהוּדִ֗ים אֶל־שֶׁ֨בַע וְעֶשְׂרִ֤ים וּמֵאָה֙ מְדִינָ֔ה מַלְכ֖וּת אֲחַשְׁוֵר֑וֹשׁ דִּבְרֵ֥י שָׁל֖וֹם וֶאֱמֶֽת׃ (לא) לְקַיֵּ֡ם אֵת־יְמֵי֩ הַפֻּרִ֨ים הָאֵ֜לֶּה בִּזְמַנֵּיהֶ֗ם כַּאֲשֶׁר֩ קִיַּ֨ם עֲלֵיהֶ֜ם מָרְדֳּכַ֤י הַיְּהוּדִי֙ וְאֶסְתֵּ֣ר הַמַּלְכָּ֔ה וְכַאֲשֶׁ֛ר קִיְּמ֥וּ עַל־נַפְשָׁ֖ם וְעַל־זַרְעָ֑ם דִּבְרֵ֥י הַצֹּמ֖וֹת וְזַעֲקָתָֽם׃ (לב) וּמַאֲמַ֣ר אֶסְתֵּ֔ר קִיַּ֕ם דִּבְרֵ֥י הַפֻּרִ֖ים הָאֵ֑לֶּה וְנִכְתָּ֖ב בַּסֵּֽפֶר׃ (פ)
(30) Dispatches were sent to all the Jews in the hundred and twenty-seven provinces of the realm of Ahasuerus with an ordinance of “equity and honesty:” (31) These days of Purim shall be observed at their proper time, as Mordecai the Jew—and now Queen Esther—has obligated them to do, and just as they have assumed for themselves and their descendants the obligation of the fasts with their lamentations. (32) And Esther’s ordinance validating these observances of Purim was recorded in a scroll.
22כב
(יח) וַיְהִ֛י דְּבַר־יְהוָ֥ה צְבָא֖וֹת אֵלַ֥י לֵאמֹֽר׃ (יט) כֹּֽה־אָמַ֞ר יְהוָ֣ה צְבָא֗וֹת צ֣וֹם הָרְבִיעִ֡י וְצ֣וֹם הַחֲמִישִׁי֩ וְצ֨וֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִ֜י וְצ֣וֹם הָעֲשִׂירִ֗י יִהְיֶ֤ה לְבֵית־יְהוּדָה֙ לְשָׂשׂ֣וֹן וּלְשִׂמְחָ֔ה וּֽלְמֹעֲדִ֖ים טוֹבִ֑ים וְהָאֱמֶ֥ת וְהַשָּׁל֖וֹם אֱהָֽבוּ׃ (פ)
(18) And the word of the LORD of Hosts came to me, saying, (19) Thus said the LORD of Hosts: The fast of the fourth month, the fast of the fifth month, the fast of the seventh month, and the fast of the tenth month shall become occasions for joy and gladness, happy festivals for the House of Judah; but you must love honesty and integrity.