I have read the book of Esther several times, both for enjoyment and for learning God’s will. It is one of my favorite books of the Bible complete with adventure, romance and drama. Esther is one of my favorite women of the Bible, showing strength of character in dangerous circumstances. Author, Larry Christenson approaches the Book of Esther from a different perspective – as a guide to intercession.
The book of Esther is a story of an evil force, Haman, that threatens the lives of the entire Jewish nation. Only Esther stands between Haman and the king with the ability to save the Jews. The outcome hinges on Esther’s strategy of intercession with the king, the ultimate power in the land and the only one who can save her people.
Mr. Christenson uses the story of Esther as a teaching on the power of intercession. He likens it to the intercessor, standing in the gap between the King of kings and those in need of prayer. “The Mantle of Esther” is a challenge to enter the place where the enemy must yield to the authority of the King.
Part One: Preparation for Intercession
Christenson maps out the step by step strategy of an intercessor as seen in the story of Esther. He begins with the intercessor being chosen and then prepared, deepening his relationship with the King by being fully immersed in scripture.
“The controlling concern of the intercessor becomes simply, ‘What does the Lord desire of me? How may I please Him?” p37
“The ministry of intercession is not based on wispy spiritual feelings, nor even powerful experiences, but on instruction in the truth and reality of Scripture.” P43Part Two: The Practice of Intercession
Christenson speaks of the strategy of intercession.
“Before presenting petitions, the intercessor looks for a time of communion, praise, adoration; a time for intimate fellowship with the Lord. This is a necessary prelude to presenting petitions.” P 91
“Communion with the Lord and the exercise of spiritual authority are virtually two sides of the same coin.’ P.113
Part Three: The Triumph of Intercession
“God has chosen to run His kingdom on prayer.” P.136
“The Mantle of Esther” is a clear and easy to understand teaching on intercession. I feel that it might be best used for a small group. It is organized into understandable exercises leading to becoming an effective intercessor, making it a valuable tool for group study.
Larry Christenson is ordained in the Evangelical Lutheran Church and is former director of the International Lutheran Renewal Center in Minneapolis. Among other books he has written is “The Christian Family” and “Answering Your Questions About Speaking in Tongues.”