Esther 9:6
And in Shushan the palace the Jews slew and destroyed five hundred men.
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(6) The palace.—Doubtless the whole royal city, rather than the palace strictly so called. It is obvious that even Xerxes would hardly have allowed bloodshed, otherwise than by his direct orders, within the precincts of the palace.

Esther 9:6. In Shushan the palace — That is, in the city where the palace was; it not being probable, either that they would make such a slaughter in the palace itself, or that they would be permitted so to do; the Jews slew and destroyed five hundred men — These, and the rest killed in other places, either were men who did not conceal their wicked inclinations, but openly assaulted the Jews, and whom therefore the king’s edict gave them power to destroy; or, they were persons whom the Jews knew to be their avowed enemies, and such as would watch all opportunities to assault and destroy them.

9:1-19 The enemies of the Jews hoped to have power over them by the former edict. If they had attempted nothing against the people of God, they would not themselves have suffered. The Jews, acting together, strengthened one another. Let us learn to stand fast in one spirit, and with one mind, striving together against the enemies of our souls, who endeavour to rob us of our faith, which is more precious than our lives. The Jews, to the honour of their religion, showed contempt of wordly wealth, that they might make it appear they desired nothing except their own preservation. In every case the people of God should manifest humanity and disinterestedness, frequently refusing advantages which might lawfully be obtained. The Jews celebrated their festival the day after they had finished their work. When we have received great mercies from God, we ought to be speedy in making thankful returns to him.By "Shushan the palace (or the fort)," is probably meant the whole of the upper town, which occupied an area of more than 100 acres, and contained many residences besides the actual palace. The Jews would not have ventured to shed blood within the palace-precincts. 5-16. Thus the Jews smote all their enemies—The effect of the two antagonistic decrees was, in the meantime, to raise a fierce and bloody war between the Jews and their enemies throughout the Persian empire; but through the dread of Esther and Mordecai, the provincial governors universally favored their cause, so that their enemies fell in great numbers. In Shushan the palace, i.e. in the city so called, as was noted before, Esther 1:2; it not being probable either that they would make such a slaughter in the king’s palace, or that they would be suffered so to do.

Five hundred men; whom by long experience they knew to be their constant and inveterate enemies, and such as would watch all opportunities to destroy them; which also they might possibly now attempt to do. Part of them also might be friends and allies of Haman, and therefore the avowed enemies of Mordecai.

And in Shushan the palace the Jews slew and destroyed five hundred men. Not in the royal palace, where it cannot be thought the Jews had so many enemies, or such a bloody slaughter of them should be made there; but in the city, where the palace was: and this may seem somewhat wonderful, that there should so many rise there against the Jews, so near the court, now altogether in the interest of the Jews; but these were men no doubt of Haman's faction, and enraged at his disgrace and death, and headed by his ten sons, who took the advantage of the decree to avenge his death; the Targum says, these were princes of the house of Amalek. And in Shushan the palace the Jews slew and destroyed {d} five hundred men.

(d) Besides the three hundred that they slew the second day, Es 9:15.

6. in Shushan the palace] The word seems to have a somewhat wider sense here than earlier in the Book (see note on Esther 1:2), meaning perhaps royal city. Bloodshed within the palace proper would not have been permitted, and even in the fortress connected with it this number would scarcely have been reached.

Verse 6. - In Shushan the palace. i.e. the upper city, where the palace was. The area of the hill is above a hundred acres, and there are many remains of residences on it besides the palace. It was probably densely peopled. Esther 9:6In the citadel of Susa they destroyed (in round numbers) 500 men.
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