“Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place. For we are to God the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing.” -2 Corinthians. 2:14-15.
“But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.” -2 Corinthians 3:18.
We are living in the last times. Jesus is standing at your heart’s door and knocking. Will you take hold of the handle dripping with myrrh and allow the Son of God to come in? Will you encounter him fully in his death, burial, and resurrection? Will you allow the Living Christ to anoint your old nature; wrinkles, age-spots, and all; with the oil of myrrh? It’s the only way you will become the beautiful bride the King longs to see!
What does myrrh have to do with us? Why is it mentioned all throughout the Bible? It was a Roman custom to offer the victim of crucifixion myrrh mingled with wine before they pierced the hands and feet with nails. Why? Mixed together they act as a stimulant and pain reliever, dulling the senses. Jesus rejected it so he would experience the inferno of pain for you and me. In doing so, all the shame, anguish, and bitter seasons of our lives would be cast upon him and he chose to bear it all. The Books of Esther and Exodus both give wonderful descriptions of the importance of not rejecting the myrrh. The Hebrew root word for myrrh is Marah, which means “bitter.” When you and I come into the bitter water seasons of our lives, many times we reject any discomfort in hopes of something sweet and easier to swallow. It is only through the work of the cross in our lives that our bitter waters will be made sweet.
Every person’s path is different. There are times in your life when, like Queen Esther, you come to a season of life in which all you see, taste, and smell seems painfully bitter. How will you endure these times? Not by longing for sweet wells and the shade of a better season. We, like Jesus, need to spit out the myrrh so we can endure as Christ promised. Then we can face our difficult seasons in life and be transformed into his image, a church without spot or wrinkle. Your pain is bearable only because of what Jesus did for us on the cross. Because Jesus was cleansed with hyssop and anointed with myrrh, he walked in full authority as he marched into hell and set the captives free!
First the suffering, then the glory. First the bitter, then the sweet. All of the authority Queen Esther received was a direct result of her willingness to be anointed with myrrh and then all the bathtubs of perfumes. Beloved, it’s time for us to start walking in full authority. It’s time to get the putrid odor out of our anointing. If Jesus learned obedience through the things he suffered, then we need to realize we also will have moments of suffering and myrrh.
Myrrh was used as an aid to beauty by healing blemishes. As a preservative, it kept things from rotting. Without the oil of myrrh in our lives, we would stink. Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place. For we are to God the fragrance of Christ.
Esther is a Persian name, but she was Jewish and also had a Hebrew name. Her Hebrew name was Hadassah, which means “the fragrance of the myrtle tree.” Even her name spoke of both hers and the church’s role as a sweet smelling sacrifice to the world around us through our lives. Without the element of myrrh our walk, testimony, and anointing will smell sweet for a while, but then start to stink. “And the yoke will be destroyed because of the anointing (oil)” -Isaiah 10:27. Just as the oil of myrrh strengthens the foundations of our lives and releases the beautiful fragrance of Christ to all those near us, so it anoints our old nature for burial. Every time God spots a new blemish or wrinkle, the unseen hand of the Holy Spirit anoints it to die. “But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.” -1 Peter 5:10.
Our “myrrh” seasons are times when God cuts through the outer layers of our hearts that keep us from our blessings and his favor. It is when God, by his mercy, reveals to us issues that need correction and healing or deliverance that our sorrow turns into joy. For the joy that was set before him, he endured the cross. We are told to take up our cross daily as well.
The myrrh season took six months for Esther. “Each young woman’s turn came to go in to King Ahasuerus after she had completed twelve months’ preparation, according to the regulations for the women, for thus were the days of their preparation apportioned: six months with oil of myrrh, and six months with perfumes and preparations for beautification.” -Esther 2:12. We tend to want to rush through that first six months and catapult right into the final six months of the beauty process in preparation of becoming the Bride of Christ, without spot, wrinkle, or blemish. These are not outer wrinkles; the type middle-age women spend millions on each year to try reversing; these are wrinkles in our hearts and souls.
So many of us wonder why life can’t be just a little easier. Does it ever seem you are walking through an awesome period in your life only to then be faced with the uncovering of even more spots and imperfections in your heart, mind, or soul? These are the times when we need to endure with patience, allowing patience to have her perfect work within us. The Lord himself is preparing us for the glorious moment when we see him face to face in all his majesty. This season covers and heals our broken blood vessels caused by fear, stress, and pain. Take heart, my friend! Jesus is preparing you for the glorious wedding banquet, and until that day dawns, he will complete the work he started within you and transform you into his image.
“But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.” -2Corinthians 3:18.
The Book of Esther is not only a type and shadow of things to come, it is a kingdom book, through it we glean insight into how God’s government operates, its order, and its protocol. The word explains it this way: “And let beauty preparations be given them.”-Esther 2:3. As we grow in our walk and relationship with Jesus, all the while our king is sanctifying us, his bride, and removing all our blemishes and stains we acquire during the times we stumble or stray from the path. Paul says that Christ gave himself for the Church. “That He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish.” -Ephesians 5:27.
The Book of Esther paints a beautiful picture of how much God loves us and gives us the desire to both will and do his good pleasure. God handpicks us. Remember, it wasn’t you that chose him, but rather he who chose you. He promises to provide all that you need and to finish the work he started in you, and finally he will present you as a part of his glorious bride. As for Esther, and our part, we must receive all he has for us and submit to him in every way and in every season in our lives, even the seasons of correction, cleansing, and myrrh.
Esther’s obedience was summed up in her own words and her heart’s desire, “If I perish I perish, but who knows that possibly I was born for such a time as this.” Her obedience caused her inner beauty to shine above the others, and it gave her the favor and courage to face every enemy and trial and hurdle in her calling and in her life resulting in the saving of the entire Jewish nation! If you are a person of faith, a son or daughter of the King, remember faith always believes. This could be the day when my help and deliverance comes. Faith, like that of Esther’s, teaches us that it is only a matter of time and patient enduring until the tables will be turned for our behalf and for the behalf of all those you have been called to love and minister to, to draw into the Kingdom of God through salvation in Jesus Christ alone.
Now is not the time to draw away from your first love. You just may be the only Bible some will ever read. What will the Gospel according to __________ say? Insert your name.
You were born for such a time as this.
Ruminate on that.