The Exchange (Esther Day 7) Author-Brandon Caudill
We all love it when justice is served and the bad guy of the story finally gets what he had coming to him. This is what we see happening in today’s reading:
“And the king said, “Hang him on that.” So they hanged Haman on the gallows that he had prepared for Mordecai. Then the wrath of the king abated.” -Esther 7:10
Wicked Haman, the one behind the impending genocide of the Jews, and the one who intended to murder Mordecai, died on the gallows he had built to hang another. But before we rejoice too much in the death of a wicked man, let us remember the scandalous message of the gospel.
You see, the gospel tells us that instead of justice being served by the putting to death of a wicked man, it was served through the putting to death of the Righteous One, Jesus Christ. Instead of being hung on a gallows pole, as did Haman, Jesus hung on a terrible cross and died the death that we deserved. And through His death and subsequent resurrection, Jesus made the only way for our Haman-like wickedness to be forgiven, and for us to have new life.
The Righteous One for the rebel—that’s the exchange Jesus freely made for you and I. May we worship and thank Him for it today.
Heavenly Father, I praise You for Your love and Your justice. As I meditate upon these two things today, You are teaching me how they work hand in hand. While You are concerned with demonstrating Your love to the world (Jn 3:16), You are also concerned with executing justice for the evil committed in this world. Your love necessitates Your justice, for when someone loves another, they are moved to action on their behalf. And Your justice has given us Your great love in Christ Jesus. For it is in Him that You showed Your amazing love for the broken sinners of this world by wrapping Yourself in flesh, living the perfect life none of us could have lived, dying the death that all of us deserved, and rising from the dead to defeat death and sin, all so that we could enjoy Your gift of salvation. It was the only way that broken sinners could be restored to fellowship with you, a holy God. Your holiness cannot tolerate our sin. Something had to be done in order to bring us back to You. So You became the perfect sacrifice to satisfy Your own holy wrath toward our sin. You are the Judge, but You are also the Advocate and the Lamb that was slain to pay for the penalty we deserved. Your love necessitates Your justice, and Your justice gives us Your love. My mind is blown, LORD. All I know to say is “Hallelujah, what a Savior!” Because of Your transforming love, Father, may I be empowered by You to seek justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with You in this world (Mic 6:8). I pray this in the precious name of Jesus. Amen.