To promote an understanding of the Jewishness of the Scriptures which were written by Jewish men, about the Jewish Messiah, within the context of first century Jewish culture in Israel.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Feast of Purim

Purim is one of the most joyous and fun holidays on the Jewish calendar. It commemorates a time when the Jewish people living in Persia were saved from extermination.  Beginning at sundown, March 19 (14th of Adar), Purim is the celebration of Esther's courage to stand up and expose the evil Haman who wanted to exterminate the Jews living in Susa (Babylon), as found in the book of Esther in the Tanakh (Old Testament).

Purim is celebrated with a festive party where the children dress up as their favorite character from the story.  At some point during the festivities, the book of Esther (the Megillah) is read aloud and every time Esther's or Mordecai's names are mentioned, the crowd cheers in excitement; but every time the name of the evil Haman is mentioned, the crowd makes loud noises trying to drown out the sound of his name.  The kids can get pretty rambunctious, but its all in good fun.

A modern day echo of Purim was during the Nuremberg war crime trials. In the Book of Esther, Haman's ten sons were hanged on the gallows (Esther 9:13); in 1946, ten of Hitler's top associates were put to death by hanging for their war crimes (including the crime of murdering 6 million Jews).  One of the men seems to have been aware of the parallel and on the way to the gallows, he shouted "Purim Fest 1946!"  (

Another echo of Purim is found in the Soviet Union a few years later. In early 1953, Stalin was planning to deport most of the Jews in the Soviet Union to Siberia, but just before he was able to carry out his plans, he suffered a stroke and died. This happened the night of March 1, 1953: the night of Purim. Stalin's plans were never carried out  (

Throughout the ages, there has continually been some who wanted to wipe out the Jewish people. But like the failed plans of the past, the present attempts will also fall by the wayside, as the God of the Jewish people stands guard to protect His chosen ones.


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