“Stupid is as stupid does.” I love that quote from the movie Forest Gump because it is so true. There is one such woman in the Bible whom fits this phrase perfectly. She was the wife of a wicked, reckless man, and her senseless advice cost the life of her husband. “Though they plot evil against you and devise wicked schemes, they cannot succeed.” Psalm 21:11.
“A fool finds pleasure in wicked schemes, but a person of understanding delights in wisdom.” Proverbs 10:23. A wicked scheme is derived against one of God’s own people. Mordecai, Esther’s cousin, refuses to bow before anyone but the Living God; refuses to acknowledge anyone who demands worship. Standing head and shoulders tall in a sea of kneeling idolaters, Mordecai looks at evil straight in the face. He does not waiver. His faith is unshaken. The Hebrew knows who is truly King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
Rage fills a man’s heart. How dare the Jew stand a not bow before him. Haman seethes with vengeance, declaring death upon God’s elect. The audacity Mordecai has is unthinkable, but a small voice quiets the wrath. A suggestion of pure brilliance unfolds, ‘“Have a pole set up, reaching to a height of fifty cubits, ask the king in the morning to have Mordecai impaled on it. Then go with the king to the banquet and enjoy yourself.’ This suggestion delighted Haman and he had the pole set up.” Yes, Zeresh, Haman’s wife, reveals a cold, bloodthirsty heart; exactly what her husband has enjoyed her for.
Haman was invited to a small gathering. Food pleasing to the eye, the finest wine for the finest of men, and an audience of two; Queen Esther and King Xerxes. Who could say no to such a request of presence? Little does Haman know the queen is prudent to the knowledge of his evil heart. For at this small soiree, Queen Esther will unveil the plans of a prideful man for which she herself would parish.
Because of Haman’s fulsome and arrogant vanity, he has order all Jews be killed. Unbeknownst to Haman, the queen is God’s chosen along with her cousin Mordecai. In a three day vigil of fasting night and day, the queen is given insight from the Lord. A banquet, of such sumptuous and opulent delicacies for which the most exquisite palate could never refuse, Haman could certainly not resist the honor of a private gathering with royalty.
After the banquet, Haman is asked to come again. Yes! How the elite have enjoyed his companionship, company, and charm. But, before the next dinner, Haman finds himself honoring Mordecai for valiant detection of a plot, a conspiracy to kill the king. Xerxes has Mordecai recognized for his gallant heroism and honored; not by impalement, but through a royal robe, the king himself has worn, and a royal crest placed on Mordecai’s head trotting through the city streets proclaiming, “This is what is done for the man the king delights to honor!” (Esther 6:1-11)
Galatians 6:7 states, “Do not be deceived; God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.” Haman is a man sliding down a slipper slope into the very wicked scheme he devised. Once Zeresh received word Mordecai was a Jew and King Xerxes had honored him, she tells Haman, “Since Mordecai, before whom your downfall has started, is of Jewish origin, you cannot stand against him – you will surely come to ruin!” Words of wisdom spoken solemnly too late.
For at the night of the second banquet, Queen Esther unveils Haman’s plans to kill the Jews, including her! The hunter becomes the hunted as Haman begs Queen Esther for his life. At the King’s request, Haman his impaled on the very pole he had made for Mordecai.
Under a woman who loved her people, a Jewish holiday called Purim is celebrated today in honor of Queen Esther commemorating a time when the Jewish people were saved from annihilation (Jewish Virtual Library). According to Jewish Women’s Archive, “The Rabbis prescribe that on Purim everyone must say, ‘Cursed be Haman, cursed be his sons, cursed be Zeresh his wife,” thereby fulfilling Proverbs 10:7, ‘But the name of the wicked rots.’”
Zeresh will be a woman remembered for her consultation in attempting to exterminate the Jewish nation. Compared to the love for which Queen Esther had for her own, Zeresh had only evil in her heart. Compared to Queen Esther who worshiped and sought the Lord’s wisdom and protection, Zeresh is remembered for her impulsive, wicked scheme and self-indulgent pride. Zeresh’s advice killed her husband for Proverbs 12:5 plainly reads, “The plans of the righteous are just, but the advice of the wicked is deceitful.” Psalm 73:7 states, “From their callous hearts comes iniquity, their evil imaginations have no limits.” Finally, Proverbs 6:16-19 warns, “There are six things the Lord hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a person who stirs up conflict in the community.” I think it is safe to say Zeresh encompassed at least four for these atrocities. Remember my friend, “Do not be deceived; God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.” Galatians 6:7