5:1 It so happened that on the third day Esther put on her royal attire and stood in the inner court of the palace, 1 opposite the king’s quarters. 2 The king was sitting on his royal throne in the palace, opposite the entrance. 3 5:2 When the king saw Queen Esther standing in the court, she met with his approval. 4 The king extended to Esther the gold scepter that was in his hand, and Esther approached and touched the end of the scepter.
5:4 Esther replied, “If the king is so inclined, 6 let the king and Haman come today to the banquet that I have prepared for him.” 5:5 The king replied, “Find Haman quickly so that we can do as Esther requests.”
So the king and Haman went to the banquet that Esther had prepared. 5:6 While at the banquet of wine, the king said to Esther, “What is your request? It shall be given to you. What is your petition? Ask for as much as half the kingdom, 7 and it shall be done!”
5:7 Esther responded, 8 “My request and my petition is this: 5:8 If I have found favor in the king’s sight and if the king is inclined 9 to grant my request and perform my petition, let the king and Haman come tomorrow to the banquet that I will prepare for them. At that time 10 I will do as the king wishes. 11
[5:1] 2 tn Heb “the house of the king”; NASB “the king’s rooms”; NIV, NLT “the king’s hall.” This expression is used twice in this verse. In the first instance, it is apparently the larger palace complex that is in view, whereas in the second instance the expression seems to refer specifically to the quarters from which the king governed.
[5:6] 7 sn As much as half the kingdom. Such a statement would no doubt have been understood for the exaggeration that it clearly was. Cf. the similar NT scene recorded in Mark 6:23, where Herod makes a similar promise to the daughter of Herodias. In that case the request was for the head of John the Baptist, which is a lot less than half the kingdom.