Esther didn't reveal her Jewish background on the advice of Mordechai. What was Mordechai's reason for wanting Esther to keep her nationality a secret? Couldn't the Jews have benefited from having one of their own people in such a place of power?

Mordechai was "politically savvy" and there were many reasons behind his logic. One reason was that when Vashti was killed, no one looked beyond her - her nation was not at risk as a result of her actions. But when a Jew does something wrong, the result is that all Yidden suffer (our achdus makes that part of the package). This has been proven time and again throughout history. In fact when "one Jew" refused to bow before Haman, Haman decided to wipe out the entire Jewish nation. It was better for Esther's identity to remain a secret on the chance that there would be an incident in the castle, so as to prevent a flare-up in anti-Semitism.

Also, Mordechai reasoned that as long as there was no pride in being Jewish - at least to outsiders, the gentiles would continue to distance themselves from intermarrying, but with a Jewish queen in the castle there was a chance that that would change and the Jews would lose a great merit. We were saved from Egypt for not mixing with the Mitzriyim and we needed that same zechus against Haman.

Today too, we should understand that we as Jews are different and appreciate it and recognize that that is the way to redemption.

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