Israel's United Kingdom encompassed the reigns of Saul, David, and Solomon.
Israel's Divided Kingdom occurred during the reign of Rehoboam, Solomon's son.
10 Tribes made up the Northern Kingdom, also referred to as Israel.
2 Tribes (Judah & Benjamin) made up the Southern Kingdom, also referred to as Judah.
The Northern Kingdom was taken captive in 722-721 B.C. by the Assyrians.
The Southern Kingdom was taken captive in 605-586 B.C. by the Babylonians.
The Babylonians were defeated in 539 B.C. by the Medes-Persians.
The Jewish people were allowed to return to their homeland by Cyrus the Great. (Ezra 1:1-4)
• God referred to him as "my shepherd" and "His anointed". (Is. 44:28-45:1)
Events recorded in the Book of Esther take place:
• After the return of Zerubbabel who rebuilt the temple. (Ezra chapters 1-6)
• Before the return of Ezra who restored spiritual order. (Ezra chapters 7-10)
• Before the return on Nehemiah who restored Jerusalem's walls. (Book of Nehemiah)
Esther is one of 2 women who have books named after them, the other being Ruth.
The major themes of the Book of Esther are God's:
Preservation (He saves His chosen people from annihilation.)
Sovereignty (He oversees the affairs of men to accomplish His will.)