|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
10:1-3 Greatness of Ahasuerus-Mordecai's advancement. - Many instances of the grandeur of Ahasuerus might have been given: these were written in the Persian chronicles, which are long since lost, while the sacred writings will live till time shall be no more. The concerns of the despised worshippers of the Lord are deemed more important by the Holy Spirit, than the exploits of the most illustrious monarch on earth. Mordecai was truly great, and his greatness gave him opportunities of doing the more good. He did not disown his people the Jews, and no doubt kept to the true religion. He did not seek his own wealth, but the welfare of his people. Few have it in their power to do so much good as Mordecai; but all have it in their power to do hurt, and who has it not in his power to do some good? We are not required to do what is not in our power, or is unsuited to our station; but all are bound to live under the influence of the tempers displayed in the saints, whose examples are recorded in the Bible. If we live by the faith of Christ, we shall be active according to the ability and opportunities he gives us, in promoting his glory and the best interests of men. If our faith be genuine, it will work by love. Wait in faith and prayer, and the event will be safe and glorious; our salvation is sure, through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Verse 3. - Next unto king Ahasuerus. Compare Genesis 41:40; Daniel 5:7; Daniel 6:3. Profane history neither confirms this nor contradicts it. We know almost nothing of Xerxes from profane sources after his return to Susa in B.C. 479. Accepted cf. Or, "beloved by." The wealth of his people. i.e. their welfare. Speaking peace to all his seed. It is generally allowed that by "his seed", we must understand those of the same stock with himself - "the seed of Israel." "Speaking peace" to them seems to mean "promoting their peace and safety" - insuring them, so long as he lived and ruled, a quiet and peaceful existence.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
For Mordecai the Jew was next unto Ahasuerus,.... The second man in the kingdom, the principal of the counsellors, and prime minister of state:
and great among the Jews; highly respected by them, in great honour and esteem with them, for which there was great reason:
and accepted of the multitude of his brethren; or of many, of most, of the greatest part of them; for, let a man be ever so deserving, there are some that will envy his greatness, cavil at everything done by him, and speak evil of him without any just reason:
seeking the wealth of his people; their good, their welfare and happiness, temporal and spiritual:
and speaking peace to all his seed; not only to his family, but to all the Jews who were of the same seed with him, the seed of Abraham; either speaking to them in an humble and condescending manner, being very humane, affable, and courteous; or speaking for them to the king, asking of him for them what might conduce to their peace, prosperity, and happiness. No mention is made in this history of the death and burial either of Mordecai or Esther; but the author of Cippi Hebraici says (z), that Mordecai was buried in the city of Shushan, and that all the Jews in those parts assemble at his grave on the day of Purim, and sing songs, playing on tabrets and pipes, rejoicing that there was a miracle wrought; and the same writer says (a), they do the like at that time at the grave of Esther, half a mile from Tzephat, read this book that bears her name, eat, drink, and rejoice. Benjamin of Tudela says (b), they were both buried before a synagogue, at a place called Hamdan.
(z) P. 70. Ed. Hottinger. (a) Ib. p. 64. (b) Itinerar. p. 96.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
3. For Mordecai … was next unto King Ahasuerus … great among the Jews, &c.—The elevation of this pious and patriotic Jew to the possession of the highest official power was of very great importance to the suffering church at that period; for it enabled him, who all along possessed the disposition, now to direct the royal influence and authority in promoting the interests and extending the privileges of his exiled countrymen. Viewed in this light, the providence of God is plainly traceable in all the steps that led to his unexpected advancement. This providential interposition is all the more remarkable, that, as in the analogous case of Joseph, it was displayed in making the ordinary and natural course of things lead to the most marvellous results. To use the pious words of an eminent prelate, "though in the whole of this episode there was no extraordinary manifestation of God's power, no particular cause or agent that was in its working advanced above the ordinary pitch of nature, yet the contrivance, and suiting these ordinary agents appointed by God, is in itself more admirable than if the same end had been effected by means that were truly miraculous." The sudden advancement of individuals from obscurity and neglect to the highest stations of power and influence is, in Eastern courts, no extraordinary nor infrequent occurrence. The caprice, the weak partiality of the reigning sovereign, or, it may be, his penetrating discernment in discovering latent energy and talent, has often "raised the beggar from the dunghill, and set him among princes" [1Sa 2:8]. Some of the all-powerful viziers in modern Persia, and not a few of the beys in Egypt, have been elevated to their respective dignities in this manner. And, therefore, the advancement of "Mordecai, who was next unto Ahasuerus, and great among the Jews," was in perfect accordance with the rapid revolution of "the wheel of fortune" in that part of the world. But, considering all the circumstances of Mordecai's advancement, not only his gaining the favor of the king, but his being "accepted of the multitude of his brethren, it was beyond all controversy the doing of the Lord, and was truly marvellous in his people's eyes."
accepted of the multitude of his brethren—Far from being envious of his grandeur, they blessed God for the elevation to official power of so good a man.
speaking peace to all his seed—While his administration was conducted with a mild and impartial hand, he showed a peculiarly warm and friendly feeling to all his countrymen when asked his counsel or his aid.
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