Purim begins tonight

Purim begins at sunset this evening and continues through tomorrow tomorrow evening. The story of Purim is in the book of Esther and describes how the Jews were saved from annihilation during the days of the Persian Empire. It’s a great short story of faith, courage and providence.

Todd Bolen offers some interesting comments on the book of Esther. Check it out.

Here is a photo I took in Jerusalem on my first trip back in the year 2000. I learned a few things about modern observances of Purim. Many people wear costumes and some even color their hair and/or paint their faces. People give gifts of food and drink to neighbors, Some make special cookies that resemble Haman’s (supposedly) pointed ears. People come together and read the book of Esther aloud, making noise (with groggers!) every time Haman’s name is mentioned. Some celebrants insist on inebriation.

Purim observers in Jerusalem in March, 2000. For Western Gentiles, Purim costumes may resemble Halloween. (Photo by Luke Chandler)

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About LukeChandler

Luke holds an M.A. in Ancient and Classical History and has been an adjunct professor at Florida College in Temple Terrace, Florida. Luke and his wife Melanie have five children. He serves as a minister in English and Spanish with the North Terrace Church of Christ and participates annually in archaeological excavations in Israel. Luke also leads tours to Europe and the Bible Lands.
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2 Responses to Purim begins tonight

  1. afrankangle says:

    Interesting to see how traditions live in … even when adapted with twists of modern culture.

  2. lukechandler says:

    It’s fascinating how many historical memories from long ago are preserved through ongoing traditions. Purim is an old one, coming in at roughly 2,500 years, but it’s not the oldest! Not sure who/what would hold that record.

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