For if you altogether hold your peace at this time, then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place…
(a woman's sermon to women): — What is women's duty? It is to be gentle, true, devoted. It is to be as strong as it is in her to be and as beautiful as possible. It is to be a discreet keeper at home, a willing performer of out-of-sight duties, a helpmeet to man, a mother in Israel, a handmaid of the Lord. It is a fact past denial that women do exert an immense influence in the world. An English bishop has said, "A nation is what its women make it." No man is so strong, or so wise, or so good, that he can afford to do without the gentle remonstrance, the inspiriting plaudits, the pure and bright life-example of the women of his family. There is great need now for "women who understand the times and know what the people ought to do." Reforms are necessary, and in making them we shall certainly have to begin with ourselves. Better women will make better homes, better homes will make better society, better society will raise the tone of public opinion, and influence those who frame and execute our laws. Let us learn from the example of Queen Esther how to become better.
I. LET US RECOGNISE THE FACT THAT AS SHE HAD HER OPPORTUNITY, SO HAVE WE OURS. If we look around us we must see how God brings certain persons into certain circumstances because they are most fit to be there. One in a family converted. One in a family to whom has been given the seeing eyes and the understanding heart. One in a family more clever, more strong, more amiable than the rest. Why? That that one may fulfil the duties, and meet, not shirk, the responsibilities of that position.
II. LET US LEARN THAT THE FACT OF A DUTY BEING DIFFICULT AND DANGEROUS IS NO EXCUSE FOR OUR FAILING TO PERFORM IT HONESTLY.
III. WE MAY LEARN THE SOURCE OF TRUE STRENGTH AND CONFIDENCE.
IV. WE MAY LEARN THAT HAVING SEEN OUR DUTY, AND ASKED GOD'S GUIDANCE AND BLESSING, WE SHOULD FEARLESSLY GO THROUGH WITH OUR TASK. Fearlessly, but wisely, according to the light that is given to us. Esther fortified her soul with trust in God, and then used her own common sense. Esther's judgment was equal to her courage. She knew how to "bide her time.
Parallel VersesKJV: For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place; but thou and thy father's house shall be destroyed: and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?
WEB: For if you remain silent now, then relief and deliverance will come to the Jews from another place, but you and your father's house will perish. Who knows if you haven't come to the kingdom for such a time as this?"