Question:

In Esther 7:4,it reads:"For we are sold, I and my people, to be destroyed, to be slain, and to perish. But if we had been sold for bondmen and bondwomen, I had held my tongue, although the enemy could not countervail the king's damage." What did Esthermean whenshe said "although the enemy could not countervail the king's damage?"

Thank you in advance for your reply.


Answer:

This is an example where reading in an older English is not clear to the modern person. The New King James Version reads: "For we have been sold, my people and I, to be destroyed, to be killed, and to be annihilated. Had we been sold as male and female slaves, I would have held my tongue, although the enemy could never compensate for the king's loss" (Esther 7:4).

The enemy or adversary was Haman, whose hatred for the Jews lead to the order permitting the Jews to be killed. Esther is telling her husband, the king, that if the order had been to enslave the Jews, which would have included her, she would not have brought the matter to his attention, even though Haman would never be able to repay the king for the loss of his wife.