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Greek Esther 9Common English Bible (CEB)

The fateful day

On the thirteenth day of the twelfth month (that is, the month of Adar[a]), the letters written by the king were to be enforced. On that day, the Jews’ enemies perished. Out of fear for the Jews, no one stood in their way. All the leaders of the provinces, the governors, and those in charge of the king’s business respected the Jews. They were afraid of Mordecai, because the king decreed that Mordecai’s name was to be honored throughout the kingdom.[b] In the city of Susa, the Jews killed five hundred people. They also killed Parshandatha, Dalphon, Aspatha, Poratha, Adalia, Aridatha, Parmashta, Arisai, Aridai, and Vaizatha, 10 and they plundered their houses. These were the ten sons of Haman the enemy of the Jews, the son of Hammedatha, a Bougaean.

11 That same day, a report concerning the number killed in Susa reached the king that it was five hundred people. 12 So the king said to Esther in the city of Susa, “The Jews have killed five hundred people in Susa as well as the ten sons of Haman. What have they done in the rest of the royal provinces? What more do you wish now? I’ll give it to you.”

13 Esther said to the king, “Give the Jews leave to do likewise tomorrow so that they may hang Haman’s ten sons.” 14 The king ordered that this be done, and he allowed the Jews in the city to hang the bodies of Haman’s ten sons.

15 The Jews in Susa joined together again on the fourteenth day of Adar.[c] They killed three hundred people, but they didn’t take anything the people owned. 16 The rest of the Jews throughout the kingdom also came together and helped each other. They found rest from their enemies, for they had destroyed fifteen thousand of them on the thirteenth of Adar, and they didn’t take anything their enemies owned. 17 They rested on the fourteenth day of the same month. They spent it as a day of rest, with joy and celebration. 18 The Jews in Susa joined together for self-defense on the fourteenth day and did not rest. But they rested on the fifteenth day with joy and celebration. 19 This is why Jews out in the country celebrate the fourteenth of Adar as a holiday, sending gifts of food to their neighbors, but those who live in the big cities celebrate the fifteenth of Adar as a holiday, sending gifts of food to their neighbors.

The new holiday of Purim

20 Mordecai wrote these things down in a scroll and sent copies to the Jews throughout Artaxerxes’ kingdom, both near and far away. 21 He made it a rule that Jews keep the fourteenth and fifteenth days of Adar[d] as special days each and every year. 22 They are the days on which the Jews found rest from their enemies. The whole of Adar, the month in which sadness was turned into joy and mournful weeping into a holiday, was to be celebrated as a special time for weddings, for parties, and for sending gifts of food to friends and to the poor.

23 The Jews accepted what Mordecai had written to them— 24 how Haman, Hammedatha’s son, the Macedonian, declared war on the Jews, how he made an edict and cast lots to destroy them, 25 and how he went to the king to have Mordecai impaled. But whatever evils Haman tried to bring upon the Jews turned back on him instead, and he and his sons ended up impaled. 26 This is why people call these days Purim—on account of the lots, which are called purim in the Hebrew language. Mordecai established the festival on the basis of the contents of this letter, on the basis of what the Jews suffered because of all these events, and on the basis of how it all turned out for them. 27 The Jews took it upon themselves, their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, as well as all non-Jews who become Jews, to celebrate these two days[e] and never do otherwise. These days are a commemoration to be observed generation after generation in every city, land, and region. 28 These days of Purim will be observed for all time, and the events they commemorate will never be forgotten.

29 Queen Esther, Aminadab’s daughter, along with Mordecai the Jew, wrote about all they had done and confirmed the letter about Purim.[f] 31 Mordecai and Queen Esther established this ruling by their own authority, at the same time that they secured their own well-being and plan.[g] 32 Esther’s order made this decree binding for all time, and it was written down for posterity.


  1. Greek Esther 9:1 February–March
  2. Greek Esther 9:4 Some manuscripts add as 9:5 The Jews struck all their enemies with sword blows, killing, and destruction. They did whatever they wanted with those who hated them.
  3. Greek Esther 9:15 February–March
  4. Greek Esther 9:21 February–March
  5. Greek Esther 9:27 Gk lacks to celebrate these two days.
  6. Greek Esther 9:29 9:30 in Heb is omitted in Gk Peaceful and honest words were sent by letter to every Jew in one hundred twenty-seven provinces in Ahasuerus’ kingdom.
  7. Greek Esther 9:31 Gk uncertain
Common English Bible (CEB)

Copyright © 2011 by Common English Bible


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