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And the king said unto Esther at the banquet of wine, What is thy petition? and it shall be granted thee: and what is thy request? even to the half of the kingdom it shall be performed.

New Defender's Study Bible Notes

5:6 half of the kingdom. With such a carte blanche promise from the king, it seems surprising that Esther did not immediately make the appeal for her people, instead of requesting a second banquet. Whether or not she temporarily lost her courage, the delay was providential, for it was on the sleepless night in between that Ahasuerus learned of Mordecai’s earlier report to Esther which had saved the king’s life (Esther 2:21-23; 6:1-2).

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