We use cookies to enhance your experience on our website. By continuing to use our website, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Find out more
Select Bible Use this Lookup to open a specific Bible and passage. Start here to select a Bible.
Make selected Bible the default for Lookup tool.
Book: Ch.V. Select book from A-Z list, enter chapter and verse number, and click "Go."
:
OR
  • Previous Result
  • Results
  • Look It Up Highlight any word or phrase, then click the button to begin a new search.
  • Highlight On / Off
  • Next Result

The Access Bible New Revised Standard Bible, written and edited with first-time Bible readers in mind.

Esther - Introduction

Set in the royal court of Persia, the book of Esther recounts how, through a series of dramatic events, a Jewish woman becomes queen and uses her influence to win for her people the right to fight off a threat of genocide. The Jewish holiday of Purim, described at the end of the book, celebrates this victory. The book's festival theme groups it within the five “megilloth” * (scrolls) of Jewish Scripture (along with Ruth, Lamentations, Song of Solomon, and Ecclesiastes). Esther is found among the historical books of the Christian canon. *

There are three ancient versions of the book of Esther: the Masoretic text * (MT), a Jewish manuscript tradition from the Middle Ages; the Septuagint, * a Greek version from an earlier period; and another Greek manuscript tradition called the A (or Alpha) Text. The MT is the shortest of the versions and is printed here. The longer Septuagint version is accepted as canon by Roman Catholic and Orthodox Christians and is found in the Apocryphal * /deuterocanonical * books.

Because details from the book do not easily fit with historical information about the Persian king Xerxes (called in the MT Ahasuerus and in the Septuagint Artaxerxes), the book is best considered “historical fiction.” Its acceptance (mixed with gentle mockery) of foreign rule, along with lack of concern with the land of Israel, suggests that it was written in the Diaspora * (communities living outside of Israel), perhaps late in the Persian era * (the fourth or early third century BCE).

  • Previous Result
  • Results
  • Look It Up Highlight any word or phrase, then click the button to begin a new search.
  • Highlight On / Off
  • Next Result
Oxford University Press

© 2019. All Rights Reserved. Cookie Policy | Privacy Policy | Legal Notice