Summary: In a sermon addressing women’s rights, Yeshua refers to Xerxes, likely
the Persian king (486 — 485 BCE) mentioned in the Hebrew Bible (NIV) who was convinced
by queen Esther to refrain from committing genocide against the Jewish people (Y:1134-38).
Her story is the basis for the Jewish festival of Purim. The story of Esther and
Xerxes was used by Yeshua to expose the hypocrisy of his disciples who considered
women unworthy to receive basic rights traditionally afforded only to men (Yeshua
But there arose among the disciples a great contention, for some thought it unseemly
that women should minister unto the Lord to touch him, or that they should sit at
his feet to learn the law.
For it was thought in all Israel that it was an evil thing that any woman should
learn either the law or the prophets, since by woman came the fall of man.
And if it so be that any woman should take to herself a knowledge of these things,
then would many think her a witch, being filled with mischief, and they would stone
her and drive her from the city to perish.
34. I tell you truly that for the sake of a woman will a man surrender both wealth
and power, or forget altogether his parents and friends;
35. For even the mighty, being kings, if they would be greater still, make themselves
subject unto their wives and will give unto them anything which they should ask.
36. Have you not read how that Xerxes, while he was yet lord over all the earth,
being king in Persia, granted unto Esther the life of all Israel?
37. For this cause do you celebrate the Feast of Purim in joy and thanksgiving; for
in the woman Esther did God deliver Israel from Haman who desired the death of all
38. Why, then, will you withhold from women things which are come from God?