Close your eyes and imagine the Jewish nation in Persian times (519–465 BC), unwanted guests of an frosty host. An exiled nation still licking its wounds following Nebuchadnezzar - King of Babylons sacking of Jerusalem, and the destruction of Solomon's Temple a mere fifty years prior.
As though matters were not bleak enough, Haman, a powerful man in the Persian Empire, and a sworn enemy of the Jewish People, seeks to destroy them.
Why does Haman seek to destroy the Jewish People? Very simple, the Jews were different! As he is quoted in the Scroll of Esther petitioning the king, "There is one nation scattered and dispersed among the peoples, their customs are different from those of all other people... and it is not to the benefit of the king to tolerate them".
Men, woman and children would be annihilated in one day. There would be no survivors.
Then, wonder of wonders, the tables are turned. Through G-d's kindness. Queen Esther, and her cousin Mordechai become heroes, while Haman suffers an ignominious defeat, hanged on the very same tree he had prepared to hang Moredechai.
Purim is the story of goodness and decency in a world gone mad. When simply being different is a cause for suspicion and worse. The Jewish People know the story well. In a Diaspora for Two thousand years it has seen its share of ups and downs.
At times the spirit of goodness and brotherhood shines bright. At other times, the situation looks bleak and dire. But in the end goodness prevails, for in the battle between good and wicked, goodness will always prevail. Such is its nature.
The question we must ask ourselves is this, in the fight to bring goodliness and G-dliness into our world, in our own fight against evil and injustice, will we be the heroes? The Mordechai and Esther? Or will we relegate ourselves to be mere spectators?
For all Purim related questions and information visit www.chabadrh.org/purim
Join us Sunday, March 16 at 5 p.m. for Purim in the Wild West at the Coomber Hall 1521 Dranesville Road, Herndon. A fantastic celebration of the holiday of Purim.