“And when Haman saw that Mordecai did not bow down or pay homage to him, Haman was filled with fury. But he disdained to lay hands on Mordecai alone. So, as they had made known to him the people of Mordecai, Haman sought to destroy all the Jews, the people of Mordecai, throughout the whole kingdom of Ahasuerus.” [Esther 3:5-6]
Just last week, Jews all over the world celebrated the annual holy day of Purim, which remembers God’s faithfulness to save His people from annihilation through Esther, Queen of Persia. The story of Esther is as beautiful as the Queen herself — how it comes alive on the pages of Scripture with astonishing irony and divine sovereignty.
The villain of the story is a ruthless and powerful man by the name of Haman, who had been promoted to highest position of authority in the kingdom beside the king himself. Haman’s seething disdain for the Jew Mordecai — Esther’s cousin — grew into a full-blown plot to totally annihilate the Jewish people living in the provinces of Media and Persia. Haman manipulated King Ahasuerus into issuing a royal decree throughout all the land to destroy the Jews in one day. Once again the spirit of antichrist was at work in the heart of Haman.
“Letters were sent by couriers to all the king’s provinces with instruction to destroy, to kill, and to annihilate all Jews, young and old, women and children, in one day, the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which is the month of Adar, and to plunder their goods.”
THE Spirit of Antichrist
Both historically and in our modern times, if anyone wants to discover where the spirit of antichrist is at work, he must look no further than to the persecution of God’s people — Jews and Christians. Although great injustice and genocide has been carried out historically against all the different people groups of the world at one time or another, the most concentrated and persistent acts of evil have been and always will be directed toward either the Jews or Christians. From the horrors of the Holocaust during WW II to the thousands of persecuted Christians of our day, the spirit of antichrist targets the people of God. Any government or ideology that promotes hatred of Jews or Christians is by definition of the antichrist.
And Esther said, “A foe and enemy! This wicked Haman!” [Esther 7:6]
Satan hates God and all of God’s people and will always seek to deceive and destroy them. Haman is the perfect example of how the spirit of antichrist targets leaders and those in position of power. By positioning Haman at the king’s right hand, Satan was able to devise an evil plot of epic proportions. Had God not intervened through Esther and Mordecai, no Jew would have survived this onslaught of satanic wrath.
The Bible tells us that there is coming another like Haman in the last days whose sole purpose will be to make war with the saints and annihilate the Jewish people. Antichrist will be given authority for 42 months (3 1/2 years) and will be “allowed to make war on the saints and to conquer them. And authority was given it over every tribe and people and language and nation, and all who dwell on earth will worship it, everyone whose name has not been written before the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who was slain.” [Revelation 13:7-8]
One need to look no further than the present spiritual climate in the Middle East to find the greatest concentration of anti-semitic and anti-christian nations surrounding the holy land. The spirit of antichrist is clearly already at work. The stage is set and the players in place. All it will take is the right leader to unify all of these nations together under one cause, and I believe that unifying force will be the unmitigated hatred of God’s people.
The Antichrist and his demonic armies will bring such relentless, ruthless force against Jews and Christians during the great tribulation that no flesh would survive unless that time be cut short.
“So when you see the abomination of desolation spoken of by the prophet Daniel, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand), 16then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 17Let the one who is on the housetop not go down to take what is in his house, 18and let the one who is in the field not turn back to take his cloak. 19And alas for women who are pregnant and for those who are nursing infants in those days! 20Pray that your flight may not be in winter or on a Sabbath. 21For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be. 22And if those days had not been cut short, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short.
THe LORD is Mighty to SAve
Purim is a perpetual celebration of joy and gladness and serves as a reminder to God’s people that despite all the evil efforts of antichrist, our God is mighty to save His people. Such was true in Esther’s day and such will be true in the last days. Just as Haman and his 10 wicked sons were all exposed and eventually put to death under the judgment of Almighty God, the Beast and his 10 kings also will be destroyed at the LORD’s coming. The LORD delivered His people in their darkest hour primarily because the Jews humbled themselves before Him through prayer and fasting and placed their faith in the LORD, as the only One who could save them from destruction.
If there has ever been a call for God’s people to humble themselves through fasting and prayer, it is now. If there has ever been a time to exercise faith in the Only One who can save us, it is now. His name is Yeshua – Jesus the Messiah. This is a call for the faithful endurance of the saints. Like Esther, we just happen to be the generation living “at such a time as this.”
“Sing aloud, O daughter of Zion;
shout, O Israel!
Rejoice and exult with all your heart,
O daughter of Jerusalem!
15The LORD has taken away the judgments against you;
he has cleared away your enemies.
The King of Israel, the LORD, is in your midst;
you shall never again fear evil.
16On that day it shall be said to Jerusalem:
“Fear not, O Zion;
let not your hands grow weak.
17The LORD your God is in your midst,
a mighty one who will save;
he will rejoice over you with gladness;
he will quiet you by his love;
he will exult over you with loud singing.”