SPIRITUAL NOURISHMENT FOR TODAY
“And King Ahasuerus imposed tribute on the land and on the islands of the sea. 2 Now all the acts of his power and his might, and the account of the greatness of Mordecai, to which the king advanced him, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Media and Persia? 3 For Mordecai the Jew was second to King Ahasuerus, and was great among the Jews and well received by the multitude of his brethren, seeking the good of his people and speaking peace to all his countrymen” Esther 10:1-3.
Memory Verse: Proverbs 22:1 (NIV).
A GOOD NAME IS MORE DERISABLE THAN RICHES; TO BE ESTEEMED IS BETTEER THAN SILVER OR GOLD.
Since the fall of mankind, death has become part of the human race. Every human being is appointed to die once according to Scripture.
JUST AS MAN WAS DESTINED TO DIE ONCE, AND AFTER THAT TO FACE JUDGMENT.. (Hebrews 9:27 NIV).
However, what we do while we live here on this earth has influence on the life after death. Apart from the fact that our life here will determine where we spend eternity, mankind will also be judged by present and future generations according to what we did while on earth. People will be remembered by fellow human beings after they have left this world. In fact many people are still remembered today for what they did while they were alive. For instance, it is very hard to forget people such as Adolf Hitler, Martin Luther, Martin Luther King Jnr. George Washington, Nelson Mandela, St Augustine of Hippo, St Francis of Assisi, Isaac Newton, Mother Theresa, the Wesley brothers, the Wright brothers, John Wycliffe, Spurgeon, Erasmus, Aristotle, Plato, John Calvin, etcetera. We also cannot forget, Mohammed, the Apostles, the Prophets, Gautama Bhuddah, etcetera. The people mentioned here and many more unmentioned are remembered for something good or bad. In our passage for today, Mordecai is remembered by the Jews for something they think he did right.
After Mordecai had been elevated to a higher position in the Province of Susa, he worked with the King and the Queen to help maintain the peace and development of Susa. During the time of Queen Esther’s reign, Susa enjoyed relative peace and progress, and Mordecai’s contribution as the man next to the King was recognized. According to the Scripture, Mordecai’s rise to prominence was not just to help the King and the Queen; it was more about the welfare of his people, the Jews. He was held in high esteem by all the people, especially the Jews because he worked for their good and spoke for their welfare. Mordecai did not think about himself alone. He did not forget or abandon the needs of his people. He was concerned about his own people and fought for their welfare. Due to his position, the Jews in Susa prospered as their native counterparts, and at least enjoyed some amount of freedom without much intimidation or discrimination. This is what people who are put into any positions of authority are required to do; to serve their people and work for their good. Unfortunately, this has not always been the case.
Many people who have been called into leadership positions in ministry, politics, economics, etc have ended up exploiting the very people they are put there to serve. There are many pastors, prophets and teachers who are exploiting the flock they ought to feed. Today, they are many people whose ‘tactics’ for getting money from the members of their congregations could be described as exploitation. There are many ‘Christians’ who have been called into political positions to serve but have ended up stealing, promoting corruption and endorsing policies that bring hardships on the very people they claimed they were going to serve. Is that what we learnt from Christ?
How about other individual Christians doing small things here and there? Do you know that as a Christian wherever the Lord places you to work is part of your calling? What are you doing in that small corner of yours? What legacy are you leaving behind after you have left this world? Apart from God determining where you will spend eternity, what will people say after your death? You may acquire all the wealth in this life and live a very happy life. You may have a big ministry and enjoy all the fame but what else will people say after you have left the scene? What are you leaving behind for posterity?
Mordecai was remembered for working hard for the good of his people and speaking up for their welfare. This is sacrificial service. He thought more of others than himself. However, like any other human being, Mordecai cannot be used as a example of true sacrificial life. This is because he was human and therefore sinful. Many negative things can also be found about Mordecai. It is therefore important to imitate the sacrificial life of Jesus Christ. We all know that even though Jesus is God and therefore holy, he loved sinful humanity to the extent of becoming human, suffering in the hands of men to the point of death for the salvation of sinful humanity. The love Jesus demonstrated is none like any other. Jesus demonstrated the greatest love to mankind and is calling us to emulate him. The Apostle Paul said that we should imitate the attitude of Christ Jesus. Jesus’ love for mankind was not because mankind did anything for him, or he was expecting anything good from us. He did it just for the sake of his love for us.
There are many people who are trying to sacrifice for the good of other people but a closer look at their intentions may reveal that they have ulterior motives. But that is not what Christ taught Christ. As Christians, we should do something different from the ways of the world. We should do good to all men and pursue the welfare of others not because of what we expect from them but because of what Christ has done for us and taught us. We should not be selfish especially when the Lord blesses us and elevates us. We should always remember that several people are looking up to us for help, and that is why the Lord placed us where we are now. Do not disappoint God. Do not disappoint humanity. Do the little you can to brighten the corner where you are because good name is better than wealth!
THE WORD OF THE LORD!
Pastor Nana Kobina Baisie
Teacher/Pastor at Nadrim Mission International School, Busan, Korea.