3 Bible Tips: Purim
Purim, which begins at sunset Feb. 27 in 2010, is a Jewish national festival commemorating the deliverance of the Jews as recorded in the biblical book of Esther.
1. Purim is not one of the commanded "feasts of the Lord."
"Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: 'The feasts of the Lord, which you shall proclaim to be holy convocations, these are My feasts'" (Leviticus 23:2; the events of Purim did not occur until about a thousand years after this command).
2. The Bible tells the story of how Purim started.
"And Mordecai wrote these things and sent letters to all the Jews, near and far, who were in all the provinces of King Ahasuerus, to establish among them that they should celebrate yearly the fourteenth and fifteenth days of the month of Adar..." (Esther 9:20-21).
3. Purim commemorates God's deliverance of the Jews from the annihilation planned by their enemies.
"...as the days on which the Jews had rest from their enemies, as the month which was turned from sorrow to joy for them, and from mourning to a holiday; that they should make them days of feasting and joy, of sending presents to one another and gifts to the poor" (Esther 9:22).
For more about Purim, see What About Thanksgiving, Hanukkah and Purim? from the booklet Holidays and Holy Days: Does It Matter Which Days We Observe?