Midrash Esther XIII-Solomon’s Throne-An Explanation Print

Purim-EstherSolomon’s ivory throne was not the most elaborate in the world. Other Kings had far richer things made of ivory. Solomon’s throne was great in that it reminded the King that:

 

There were six steps corresponding to the six firmaments.

There were six steps corresponding to the six earths.

There were six steps corresponding to the six orders of the Mishnah.

There were six steps corresponding to the six days of creation.

There were six steps corresponding to the six matriarchs.

There were six steps corresponding to the six Commandments which the King was specially admonished to keep as King and judge.

Solomon designed his throne so that it would constantly remind the King who sat on it of his awesome responsibilities and potential. This is what the Midrash means when it says, “Only a King who rules over the world may sit on it.” Only a King with a clear sense of his responsibilities and potential may sit on such a throne.

Achashveirosh, could not sit on the throne because he believed that he could make one of his own. As far as he was concerned, the throne could be replicated. He did not understand or even perceive its message. The Midrash sees the throne manufactured by Achashveirosh as a King, who despite his ability to define his times and influence the world, was solely concerned with image.

Only such a limited King would threaten to wipe out an entire productive nation.

When such a King calls a six-month planning conference of his United Nations, he focused on image, not substance.

The Midrash is comparing Achashveirosh’s limited vision with that of Esther and Mordechai who were committed to teaching an eternal lesson, one befitting Solomon’s throne.

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