Like many of our Christian friends across the country, my wife and I went and saw the film One Night with the King on opening weekend. I have to say that I think it was a good film. I'm saying that not because I am a Christian and that is the politically correct thing to say. I really do think the film was well done. It helps to see the story of Esther on film to really grasp the fact that this orphaned Jewish girl defied an entire empire, not only an empire, but a world wide empire!
Since I am not a film critic (as if that wasn't obvious), I would like to concentrate my thoughts on a passage in the Book of Esther that I have been thinking about a lot lately. After Esther clearly explained to Mordecai the risk of appearing before the king, Mordecai said something to her that is highly relevant for all of us today. Here is what he said.
"Do not think in your heart that you will escape in the king's palace any more than all the other Jews. For if you remain completely silent at this time, then relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father's house will perish. Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?"
I would like to give a few comments on this verse and relate it to the idea of God's sovereignty and man's responsibility in the area of world evangelism. There are three truths I would like to relate this verse to this subject.
1. The danger is real. People really are lost without Christ. "Do not think you will escape..."
2. God is perfectly capable of reaching the lost without my help..."then relief and deliverance will arise from another place..."
3. Although everything will turn out right in the end, if I don't do my part, I'll be judged. "But you and your father's house will perish."
Think about it this way. The Bible teaches that in the end, everything will turn out exactly the way things are supposed to be (see I Corinthians 15:28). Let me ask all my preacher friends a question-How would your life change if you realized that in the end everything will turn out right regardless of what you do? I mean "everything" in the ultimate sense at the end of history. What theologians call "the consummation" is a fancy way of saying "What God wants, God gets". I'm not giving a license for laziness here. I know things will turn out all right for God in the end, it's myself that I think I should be concerned about.