Esther 3:1, 2
After these things did king Ahasuerus promote Haman the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, and advanced him…
I. A SUDDEN ADVANCEMENT. In a short time Haman was placed above all the princes. The officials of the court were commanded to give him reverence and worship. There seemed to be nothing which the infatuated king was able to refuse him. A quick rise to power, and one that would be envied by many! In most hearts there is a strong craving for rapid success. But it is a mistake to suppose that sudden or easy success is a benefit. For observe -
1. Prosperity is better borne and enjoyed when it is the result of long and steady effort. It is a sweeter and more honourable possession when it comes as the reward of conscientious toil.
2. The self-denying labour which, as a rule, is necessary to prosperity is itself an incalculable benefit. It brings into healthy exercise the physical and mental endowments. It develops many manly qualities.
II. AN INORDINATE CRAVING FOR QUICK ADVANCEMENT HAS A BAD EFFECT ON THE HEART. Some who never realise their desire continue to cherish it even against hope until the end. This is a cruel thirst, which dries up all the springs of happiness and kindly good in the soul. It is an idolatry which hardens, withers, embitters, and which robs life of all that would make it noble and good and happy. Haste not to be rich. Haste not after any of the world's prizes. We should strive to preserve a worthy independence of mind and heart in connection with whatever end we may be working to achieve.
III. SUDDEN PROSPERITIES ARE OFTEN BADLY OR DOUBTFULLY GAINED. The rise of Haman was not the result of admirable personal qualities, or of important services rendered to the state. From what is recorded of him we are entitled to infer that the arts by which he won the king's favour were degrading both to himself and to the king. An atmosphere of suspicion gathers round all sudden and abnormal successes. They are not the rule amongst men who follow legitimate courses. It is a terrible folly to stake our all on anything the world can give. No wealth, or rank) or fame can compare with the treasure of God's friendship and love (Isaiah 33:6; Matthew 6:19-21). - D.
Parallel VersesKJV: After these things did king Ahasuerus promote Haman the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, and advanced him, and set his seat above all the princes that were with him.