They Did Not Lay Their Hands on the Plunder

Text: Esther 9:5-10

When the king issued a decree which would allow the Jews to plunder their enemies, they did not take advantage of that permission. Their example provides us with a lesson showing that what is legal is not always right.


  • Haman plotted to kill the Jews (Esther 3:6)
  • Instead, he was killed (Esther 7:10)
  • Mordecai was promoted to Haman’s position (Esther 8:2)

The King’s Decree

  • Allowed the Jews to defend themselves against their enemies who would attack them (Esther 8:11)
  • Also gave the Jews permission to plunder the spoil of their enemies (Esther 8:11)
  • The Jews defended themselves (Esther 9:5-10) – “but they did not lay their hands on the plunder” (Esther 9:10, 15, 16)

Lesson: Something Being Legal Does Not Necessarily Mean It Is Right

  • Receiving an income while refusing to work (2 Thessalonians 3:10)
  • Same-sex marriage (Matthew 19:4-5; 1 Timothy 1:10)
  • Abortion (1 Timothy 1:9; Exodus 21:22-25)
  • Alcohol/drugs (1 Peter 4:3; 1 Thessalonians 5:6; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20)


  • We must be more concerned with what is right than with what is legal
  • We will be judged by the words of Christ (John 12:48), not the laws of men

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