Jewish Holidays and Festivals
Purim (Feast of Esther)
is one of the most joyous and fun holidays on the Jewish calendar. It
commemorates a time when the Jewish people living in Persia were saved
story is told in the book of Esther. The word "Purim" means "lots" and
refers to the lottery that Haman used to choose the date for the
Purim is celebrated on the fourteenth day of the Hebrew month Adar,
or exactly four weeks before Passover. It is held in honor of Esther, a
beautiful Jewish queen. Esther was encouraged by her cousin Mordecai to
go to her husband the king when his wicked adviser, Haman, had
persuaded him to kill all of her people. After fasting and praying,
Esther did go before her husband and pled for all of the Jews to be
saved. Her desire was granted
On Taanit Esther, the day before Purim, many people fast in
remembrance of the fasting of Queen Esther. The Purim holiday is
preceded by a minor fast, the Fast of Esther, which commemorates
Esther's three days of fasting in preparation for her meeting with the
story of Purim is told in the book of Esther. Purim is celebrated on
the 14th day of Adar, which is usually in March. The 13th of Adar is
the day that Haman chose for the extermination of the Jews, and the day
that the Jews battled their enemies for their lives. On the day
afterwards, the 14th, they celebrated their survival.
In cities that were walled in the time of Joshua, Purim is celebrated on the 15th of the month.
According to Jewfaq.org, Jews are commanded to send out gifts of food or drink, and to make gifts to charity.
The book of Esther is unusual in that it is the only book of the
Bible that does not contain the name of God. In fact, it includes
virtually no reference to God. Mordecai makes a vague reference to the
fact that the Jews will be saved by someone else, if not by Esther, but
that is the closest the book comes to mentioning God.
Thus, one important message that can be gained from the story is
that God often works in ways that are not apparent, in ways that appear
to be chance, coincidence or ordinary good luck.
Gifts to charity is always a good thing
Perhaps the most significant fact to Christianity of the Purim
holiday is that it is celebrated on the 14th of Adar in the ancient
Jewish lunar calendar. This date translates to April 6 in our Gregorian
calendar. Many believe the 14th of Adar was the birth date of Jesus.
to some scholars, it was also on this day in A.D. 37(or 34), during the
23-year reign of Emperor Tiberius (A.D. 14-37), that the Savior of the world was crucified.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was officially organized April 6, 1830.
It is also believed by many that the Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt began on that day
A little verse boys and girls in Israel learn and recite at this time is:
Mordecai, the Just,
On his horse is riding,
And the wicked Haman
From the tree is hanging.
On Purim Day we send
Nice gifts to each other,
And all the happy children
Dress up in fancy costumes.
A sweet bread called hamanstaschen is usually served in all the homes at the time of