Wednesday, March 23, 2016

The Esther Anointing by Rev. Lonnie C. Crowe

Purim celebrates the biblical heroine Esther.  This year, Purim begins at sunset on Wednesday, March 23 and ends at sunset on Thursday, March 24.  The word “purim” is a reference to the lots cast by Haman, the villain in the story, to determine the day on which the Jews were to be slaughtered.  If you are unfamiliar with the story, read the book of “Esther” in the Bible.

Remember, at that time, most of the Jews were held in captivity in Persia.  Esther, a Jewess whose Hebrew name is Hadassah, had married the king of Persia and become queen.  Haman is a representative of that demonic spirit which has sought throughout history to destroy the Jews. 

Hadassah (Esther), as queen, is in a position to save her people. She is hesitant because no one, not even his wife, could appear before the king without his permission.   
In Esther 4:14,  Mordecai, Queen Esther’s guardian, speaks to her: “For if you remain completely silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”

Remember that women in the Old Testament many times represent the Church. We are the bride of Christ.  We are the bride of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.  We have come into His Kingdom for such a time as this.  The Church, in the anointing of Hadassah, is to be a hedge of protection for Israel.

In the heart of God, the Church has not replaced Israel.  In Genesis 17:7, God established an everlasting covenant with Abraham.  Everlasting is everlasting.  The covenant with Abraham still stands.  Christians have been grafted into that covenant.  (Romans 11).  Because of the sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross, we are in blood covenant with Him and with Israel.  

I have been to Israel twice.  Each time the plane touched down at the airport in Tel Aviv, both the flight attendant and the captain assured us, “We are now in Israel.  Welcome home.”  That sense of being “home” was powerful.  While our nation has political ties to Israel, Christians have a spiritual tie.  Our roots are in Bethlehem, around the Sea of Galilee, along the streets of Jerusalem, and at the foot of Golgotha.  In Israel, we walk where Jesus walked and sense His presence.

After Daniel the prophet had prayed, an angel had to war against the demonic Prince of Persia before he could deliver the answer to Daniel’s prayer.  Haman was the personification of that spirit in Hadassah’s day.  The nation of Iran moves in that spirit today.

             Another demonic stronghold over that area of the world is the Hittite spirit.  The Hittites were an ancient empire that spread over much of the Middle East.  Translated, “Hittite” means “terrorist.”  Both the Prince of Persia and the Hittite spirit seek the destruction of Israel.  The battle is not political.  It is spiritual.   

Jesus said, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.” (Matthew 18:8 NKJV). Jesus has given that authority to us.  (Mark 13:34; Luke 10:19) We have authority in the heavenlies to stand against the power of Hell that seeks the destruction of Israel
           Hadassah and the Jewish people fasted in preparation for the battle.  God gave them the victory.   
         Paul admonished Christians to “be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.  For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace;  above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.” (Ephesians 6:10-18 NKJV)
            Through standing on the promises of God and equipped in His armor, we, like Daniel and Hadassah, can stand for Israel.  We must stand, first of all, in prayer.  Psalm 122:6-9 encourages us to pray for the peace of Jerusalem. 
         Let’s celebrate Purim by joining King David in prayer for the city of our soon and coming King:
Psalm 122:6-9 (NKJV) 
 Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: "May they prosper who love you.
 Peace be within your walls, Prosperity within your palaces."
 For the sake of my brethren and companions, I will now say, "Peace be within you."
 Because of the house of the LORD our God I will seek your good.

            Today, the Church is the house of the Lord our God.  It is for our own good as well as the good of Israel to pray for the peace of Jerusalem. We are the Hadassah, the Esther, of our time. We were born for such a time as this. We were born to contend for the promises of God in our time.

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