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A PURIM PAGEANT

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Even though G-d's name is not mentioned in the Megillah, the Talmud teaches us that the word "king" refers not only to Achaveirosh, ruler of Persia, but also alludes to the King of Kings, Almighty G-d.

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Mordecai was Parade on horseback through the streets of the city proclaiming before him, “This is done to the man whom the king wishes to honor.”(Megillah 6:11)

A restless night for the king; all across the city potent forces were awake and brooding. Esther was preparing a second banquet. Mordechai was gathering thousands of children to study. Haman, too, stayed up to supervise the gallows being erected. Even Achashveirosh, the mighty ruler who could command an empire to do his bidding, suddenly found himself unable to command sleep to descend upon his tired eyelids.

So the king Achashveirosh called for the Book of Records. If he couldn't dream he could at least remember. Unexpectedly, he came upon a forgotten entry. His life had been in danger from two poisonous, disgruntled soldiers. Someone had saved him. Mordecai, son of a race despised and hated, against which Achashveirosh himself had already signed a decree of annihilation. Had any honor been bestowed upon Mordechai for his service? Nothing!

A procession was then ordered. A new Mordechai emerges. One decked in royal robes and a crown. One led with great honor through the streets while heralds cried before him, "This is done to the Jew whom the King wishes to honor." This was the first Purim Pageant.

A restless night: A night of gloom, an exile that has lasted 2000 years. All across the world nations build only to destroy again. They are possessed, watchful and awake, fearful they might miss some madness. But do earthly rulers alone keep vigil? G-d, the King of Kings, also maintains an eternal watch. Before Him lies the Book of Records. In it are chronicled the fate of monarchs and paupers, continents and a blade of grass.

Inevitably, the King of Kings must come upon the case of the Jew sitting for centuries as keeper of the gate. His has been a watch of constantly guarding against possible dangers to the King's cause on earth. He has spread the King's message greatness, and all that the King cherishes and holds dear. And for this, what honor has been conferred upon this Mordechai among the nations? Nothing!

Nothing? He has been hated and hunted. Homeless, this pariah of peoples has been denied every human dignity. Victim of countless Hamans, he has never been certain of his fate. Nothing? If only he were made to suffer nothing. If the world withholds its merited rewards, would it at least spare him its unmerited penalties?

Yet, on Purim the Jew still finds the strength to make merry. His laugh is based on faith. He has glimpsed the writing from the Heavenly Records. He knows its meaning. He knows that while Israel patrols below, G-d guards from above. Both watch for the eventual victory of good.

And when that day of victory finally comes, and all hate is banished from this blood-bathed world, it will be the day of Israel's elevation. On that day, the nations will gather in a mighty throng and pay homage to the long despised. And all will proclaim, “This is what is done to the people whom the King of Kings desires to honor.”

And that will be the " LAST PURIM PAGEANT".

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