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Matthew Henry

Matthew Henry's Complete Commentary - Esther 4:1-4

Here we have an account of the general sorrow that there was among the Jews upon the publishing of Haman's bloody edict against them. It was a sad time with the church. 1. Mordecai cried bitterly, rent his clothes, and put on sackcloth, Est. 4:1, 2. He not only thus vented his grief, but proclaimed it, that all might take notice of it that he was not ashamed to own himself a friend to the Jews, and a fellow-sufferer with them, their brother and companion in tribulation, how despicable and how... read more

John Gill

John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary - Esther 4:1

When Mordecai perceived all that was done ,.... By the king, at the instigation of Haman, against the Jews; which he came to the knowledge of, either by some of the conflicts or by common fame, or on the sight of the edicts which were published in Shushan; though the Jews think it was made known to him in a supernatural way, either by Elijah, as the former Targum F24 So Midrash Esther, fol. 94. 1. , or by the Holy Ghost, as the latter: Mordecai rent his clothes : both behind and... read more

Adam Clarke

Adam Clarke's Commentary on the Bible - Esther 4:1

Mordecai rent his clothes - He gave every demonstration of the most poignant and oppressive grief. Nor did he hide this from the city; and the Greek says that he uttered these words aloud: Αιρεται εθνος μηδεν ηδικηκος , A people are going to be destroyed, who have done no evil! read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Esther 4:1

Mordecai rent his clothes . Compare Ezra 9:3 , Ezra 9:5 with the comment. The meaning of the act was well understood by the Persians. Put on sackcloth with ashes . So Daniel ( Daniel 9:3 ), and the king of Nineveh ( Jonah 3:6 ). Either act by itself was a sign of deep grief; both combined betokened the deepest grief possible . And went out into the midst of the city . The palace was not to be saddened by private griefs (see the next verse). Mordecai, therefore, having assumed the... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Esther 4:1-3

The cry of a doomed people. The decree against the Jews was not yet known in the palace; Esther herself was not yet informed of it. And the signs of sorrow and mourning were prohibited within the royal precincts; nothing of ill omen was suffered to come before the king and his household. But in the city evil tidings (which ever travel fast) soon came abroad. 1. THE FIRST NOTE OF LAMENTATION WAS UTTERED BY MORDECAI . The rending of clothes in grief was practised by the... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Esther 4:1-3

Distress. We have a very vivid picture, in these few touches, of a nation's exceeding sorrow. We are reminded of ― I. THE HEARTLESSNESS AND IMPOTENCE OF TYRANNY IN REGARD TO IT . The king could cheerfully speak the word which caused the calamity, and then, when its sorrow surged up to his palace wall, shut his doors against the entrance of any sign of it; "for none might enter into the king's gate clothed with sackcloth" ( Esther 4:2 ). The tyrant first becomes... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Esther 4:1-3

An unyielding grief. I. THE SUFFERING CAUSED BY ONE EVIL ACT CANNOT BE ESTIMATED . It was easy for Haman to draw up the instrument of destruction, and for the king to let him affix his signet to it, and then for both to sit down to drink; but very soon through that easily-performed act thousands of families were plunged into an agony of terror and grief. One sin committed lightly may extend widely, and descend to many generations in its disastrous effects. There is no... read more

Joseph Benson

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments - Esther 4:1

Esther 4:1. And put on sackcloth with ashes That is, he put on a garment of sackcloth or hair, and sprinkled ashes upon his head. And cried with a loud and bitter cry To express his deep sense of the mischief coming upon his people. It was bravely done thus publicly to espouse what he knew to be a righteous cause, and the cause of God, even then when it seemed to be a sinking and desperate cause. The latter Targum upon the book of Esther gives us the following account of Mordecai’s... read more

Donald C. Fleming

Bridgeway Bible Commentary - Esther 4:1-17

Esther agrees to help the Jews (4:1-17)Mordecai realized that the Jews’ only hope now lay with Esther, who, shut up in the women’s quarters of the palace, had not heard of the decree till Mordecai told her. He added that her duty now was to ask the king to cancel the decree (4:1-9).Esther pointed out that this was not as easy as Mordecai thought, for even the queen risked her life in making a request of the king (10-11). But Mordecai believed that God would not allow the Jewish people to be... read more

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