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Mordecai Persuades Esther to Help...
And Mordekai learned of all that had been done, and Mordekai tore his garments and put on sackcloth and ashes, and went out into the midst of the city, and cried out with a loud and bitter cry.
And he went up to the front of the sovereign's gate, for no one might enter the sovereign's gate wearing sackcloth.
And in every province where the sovereign's command and decree came, there was great mourning among the Yehudim, and fasting, and weeping, and wailing. And many lay in sackcloth and ashes.
And Ester's young women and eunuchs came and told her, and the sovereigness was deeply pained, and sent garments to Mordekai to wear, and to take away his sackcloth from him, but he refused.
And Ester called Hathak, one of the sovereign's eunuchs whom he had appointed to attend her, and she gave him a command concerning Mordekai, to learn what and why this was.
And Hathak went out to Mordekai, to an open space of the city, in front of the sovereign's gate.
And Mordekai told him all that befell him, and all about the silver that Haman promised to pay into the sovereign's treasuries to destroy the Yehudim.
And he gave him a copy of the written decree to destroy them, which was given at Shushan, to show it to Ester and explain it to her, and to command her to go in to the sovereign to make supplication to him, and plead before him for her people.
And Hathak came and told Ester the words of Mordekai.
And Ester spoke to Hathak, and gave him a command for Mordekai,
'All the sovereign's servants and the people of the sovereign's provinces know that any man or woman who goes into the inner court to the sovereign, who has not been called, he has but one law: to be put to death, except the one to whom the sovereign holds out the golden sceptre, who then shall live. But I have not been called to come in to the sovereign these thirty days.'
And they declared to Mordekai the words of Ester.
And Mordekai commanded them to answer Ester, 'Do not think within yourself to escape in the sovereign's palace any more than all the other Yehudim.
'For if you keep entirely silent at this time, relief and deliverance shall arise for the Yehudim from another place, while you and your father's house perish. And who knows whether you have come to the reign for such a time as this?'
And Ester commanded to reply to Mordekai,
'Go, gather all the Yehudim who are present in Shushan, and fast for me, and do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I too, and my young women shall fast in the same way, then I shall go to the sovereign, which is against the law. And if I shall perish, I shall perish!'
Mordekai then went away and did according to all that Ester commanded him.