Ester 3

1 The king ordered that Haman, the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, was lifted up and given a position of honor and a higher place than all the other captains who were with him.

2 All the king's servants who were in the king's house went down to the earth before Haman and gave him honor just as the king ordered. But Mordecai did not go down before him or give him honor.

3 Then the king's servants in the king's house said to Mordecai, »Why do you go against the king's order?«

4 Now when they repeatedly said this to him day after day and he gave no attention, they told Haman about it. To see if Mordecai's behavior would be overlooked: for he said to them that he was a Jew.

5 Haman saw that Mordecai did not go before him and give him honor. Haman was very angry.

6 But it was not enough for him to attack Mordecai only. They made clear to him who Mordecai's people were. So Haman made it his purpose to put an end to all the Jews, even Mordecai's people, through all the kingdom of Ahasuerus.

7 In the first month, the month Nissan, in the twelfth year of King Ahasuerus, from day to day and from month to month they went on looking for a sign given by Pur that is chance before Haman, till the sign came out for the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, the month Adar.

8 Haman said to King Ahasuerus, »There is a nation living here and there in small groups among the people in all the divisions of your kingdom. Their laws are different from those of any other nation. They do not keep the king's laws. For this reason it is not right for the king to let them be.

9 »If it is the king's pleasure, let a statement ordering their destruction be put in writing. I will give to those responsible for the king's business, ten thousand talents of silver for the king's storehouse.«

10 The king took his ring from his hand and gave it to Haman, the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, the hater of the Jews.

11 The king said to Haman: »The money is yours, and the people, to do with them whatever seems right to you.«

12 Then on the thirteenth day of the first month, the king's scribes were summoned. They put in writing Haman's orders to all the king's captains and the rulers of every division of his kingdom and the chiefs of every people. It was to be for every division of the kingdom in the writing commonly used there, and to every people in the language which was theirs. It was signed in the name of King Ahasuerus and stamped with the king's ring.

13 Runners delivered letters to every division of the kingdom. They ordered the death and destruction of all Jews, young and old, little children and women, on the same day, even the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, the month Adar, and the taking of all their goods by force.

14 A copy of the writing, to be made public in every part of the kingdom, was sent out to all the peoples, so that they might be ready when that day came.

15 The runners went out quickly with the king's order. A public statement was made in Shushan. The king and Haman took wine together, but the town of Shushan was troubled.