3. His Petition to the king. 2:1-8
He requested the king to allow him to return and rebuild Jerusalem.
a. His regular duty 2:1,2a
1). To present the king and his guest with food and drink.
This event may be a special occasion as the king’s wife is present, being noted in vs. 6
It seems that this was not the normal practice of the kings. Refer to –
Esther 4:11 All the king’s servants, and the people of the king’s provinces, do know, that whosoever, whether man or woman, shall come unto the king into the inner court, who is not called, there is one law of his to put him to death, except such to whom the king shall hold out the golden sceptre, that he may live: but I have not been called to come in unto the king these thirty days.
2). To protect the king.
a). From sickness or death as a result of poisoned food.
b). From sadness or sorrow –
Esther 4:1-2 When Mordecai perceived all that was done, Mordecai rent his clothes, and put on sackcloth with ashes, and went out into the midst of the city, and cried with a loud and a bitter cry; And came even before the king’s gate: for none might enter into the king’s gate clothed with sackcloth.
The king’s life was always thought to be in danger. Artaxerxes’ father was murdered by the chief of his guard. Artaxerxes’ older brother was accused of the crime. The murderer of his father also tried to kill him, but was killed himself in a hand to hand struggle. It is no wonder that he demanded a high level of protection!
b. His response to the King. 2:2b,3
1). His apprehension – he was in a dangerous position.
2). His appreciation – he voiced his appreciation for the king.
3). His anxiety – he told of his concern and sadness for the condition of his people in his homeland.