I have always loved the book of Esther since about seventh grade when our Sunday School quarterly had her picture on the cover. It was an exquisite, very oriental image, showing the moment she touched the scepter of the king. I later learned what a courageous moment that was, and it stayed with me. Deborah Bateman brings this amazing moment to life in her day by day Bible study of the book of Esther, as part of a thorough look at the whole book. Each day’s study is short enough to be completed at the beginning of a busy day, including her excellent comments, the text for study – very handy, because you don’t even need to have a Bible with you – and three or four thought questions. You have time for this Bible study.
I appreciated the fact that Deborah spread her study over the entire book. Some people would have thought it necessary to avoid the gruesome executions or the terrible battles at the end. I have read studies that simply ignore those truths. Deborah clearly accepts a basic truth: God preserved the whole Bible for us to study and grow. The hard parts are just as important as the easy parts. It is exciting to read about the parties and the fine dress and decorations, but bloody, vicious executions are challenging for twentieth century students. She handles the challenge with grace, and every student will be blessed by the way she covers the entire story.
Deborah demonstrates that you don’t need hours every day in order to study and grow in faith. You simply need to promise yourself to complete one study each day and then keep your promise. You can do this Bible study in less than a half hour each day, although you may find it so interesting that you will want to spend more time in prayer and thought. If you have not yet found a way to make time for Bible study every day, I recommend Deborah’s book.