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Esther 5:9-14

Context
Haman Expresses His Hatred of Mordecai

5:9 Now Haman went forth that day pleased and very much encouraged. 1  But when Haman saw Mordecai at the king’s gate, and he did not rise nor tremble in his presence, 2  Haman was filled with rage toward Mordecai. 5:10 But Haman restrained himself and went on to his home.

He then sent for his friends to join him, 3  along with his wife Zeresh. 5:11 Haman then recounted to them his fabulous wealth, 4  his many sons, 5  and how the king had magnified him and exalted him over the king’s other officials and servants. 5:12 Haman said, “Furthermore, Queen Esther invited 6  only me to accompany the king to the banquet that she prepared! And also tomorrow I am invited 7  along with the king. 5:13 Yet all of this fails to satisfy me so long as I have to see Mordecai the Jew sitting at the king’s gate.”

5:14 Haman’s 8  wife Zeresh and all his friends said to him, “Have a gallows seventy-five feet 9  high built, and in the morning tell the king that Mordecai should be hanged on it. Then go with the king to the banquet contented.” 10 

It seemed like a good idea to Haman, so he had the gallows built.

1 tn Heb “happy and good of heart”; NASB “glad and pleased of heart”; NIV “happy and in high spirits.”

2 tn Heb “tremble from before him”; NIV “nor showed fear in his presence”; TEV “or show any sign of respect as he passed.”

3 tn Heb “sent and brought.” The expression is probably a hendiadys (a figure of speech in which a single idea is expressed through two words or phrases), in which case the two verbs could be translated simply as “summoned” (so NAB) or “sent for” (NASB).

4 tn Heb “the glory of his riches” (so KJV, NASB); NRSV “the splendor of his riches.”

5 sn According to Esth 9:10 Haman had ten sons.

6 tn Heb “caused to come”; KJV “did let no man come in…but myself.”

7 tn Heb “called to her”; KJV “invited unto her”; NAB “I am to be her guest.”

8 tn Heb “his”; the referent (Haman) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

9 tn Heb “fifty cubits.” Assuming a standard length for the cubit of about 18 inches (45 cm), this would be about seventy-five feet (22.5 meters), which is a surprisingly tall height for the gallows. Perhaps the number assumes the gallows was built on a large supporting platform or a natural hill for visual effect, in which case the structure itself may have been considerably smaller. Cf. NCV “a seventy-five foot platform”; CEV “a tower built about seventy-five feet high.”

10 tn Or “joyful”; NRSV “in good spirits”; TEV “happy.”



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