“Be careful what you wish for.” Have you heard that before? Imagine if some of our thoughts and feelings during our weak, angry moments came true. Watch out! Look at what happened to Haman in the book of Esther.
Hatred burned deep inside of Haman for Mordecai. It spilled out of his angry heart until it consumed him and grew to include all of the Jews living in the land of Persia. I can only assume this hatred was literally from the pits of hell, for Satan has tried since “in the beginning” to destroy all mankind, but especially God’s chosen people, the Jews.
The edict sent throughout the land of Persia, signed and sealed by the king and declaring that all the Jews should be annihilated? Haman’s idea. (Esther 3:8-15) The enormous gallows (75 feet tall!) custom made just especially for Mordecai? Haman’s idea (well, actually thought up by his wife and friends) and constructed in his own front yard. (Esther 5:14)
But guess what? God does not allow evil to triumph. And sometimes His ways are truly breathtaking.
“So Haman came in and the king said to him, ‘What is to be done for the man whom the king desires to honor?’ And Haman said to himself, ‘Whom would the king desire to honor more than me?’ Then Haman said to the king, ‘For the man whom the king desires to honor, let them bring a royal robe which the king has worn, and the horse on which the king has ridden, and on whose head a royal crown has been placed; and let the robe and the horse be handed over to one of the king’s most noble princes and let them array the man whom the king desires to honor and lead him on horseback through the city square, and proclaim before him, “Thus it shall be done to the man whom the king desires to honor.”‘ Then the king said to Haman, ‘ Take quickly the robes and the horse as you have said, and do so for Mordecai the Jew, who is sitting at the king’s gate; do not fall short in anything of all that you have said.'” ~ Esther 6:6-10
Wow. Really? Can you even imagine what was going through Haman’s mind? The guy Haman loved to hate, the one who had a huge gallows waiting with his name on it, was the “man whom the king desires to honor”?? How insulting!
I used to read about Haman and think what a wicked, horrible man he was. And while that is true, we all have the capacity within ourselves to hate with the passion that Haman hated Mordecai. It is only by God’s saving grace, by being transformed by the renewing of my mind (Romans 12:1), and by the cleansing blood and perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ Himself that I do not go the way of Haman. For don’t we all have our moments, if we are completely honest with ourselves? Hopefully they are fleeting and few, but still we struggle with our old sin nature. Day after day. Thankfully, “The LORD’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Thy faithfulness.” ~ Lamentations 3:22-23
How did this hatred start in Haman? It seems to me that it all began with pride. He knew he was pretty special, and he was angered when Mordecai refused to bow and honor Haman’s position. It was certainly prideful and self-centered to assume that the “man whom the king desires to honor” was assuredly him!
What does the Bible say about pride?
“The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek [after God]: God [is] not in all his thoughts.” ~ Psalm 10:4 (KJV)
“[For] the sin of their mouth [and] the words of their lips let them even be taken in their pride: and for cursing and lying [which] they speak.” ~ Psalm 59:12 (KJV)
“Therefore pride compasseth them about as a chain; violence covereth them [as] a garment.” ~ Psalm 73:6 (KJV)
“[When] pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly [is] wisdom.” ~ Proverbs 11:2 (KJV)
“Pride [goeth] before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.” ~ Proverbs 16:18 (KJV)
“For all that [is] in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.” ~ 1 John 2:16 (KJV)
Haman’s hatred and pride brought him shame when he had to obey the king’s orders and honor Mordecai (Esther 6:11-14), terror when his wickedness was found out (Esther 7:6-8), and death on the 75 foot gallows he had intended for Mordecai.
“He who hates disguises it with his lips, but he lays up deceit in his heart…Though his hatred covers itself with guile, his wickedness will be revealed before the assembly. He who digs a pit will fall into it, and he who rolls a stone, it will come back on him.” ~ Proverbs 26:24, 26-27
Those verses describe Haman’s life perfectly. May we never go the way of Haman!