8 It so happened that when the king’s edict and his law became known many young women were taken to Susa the citadel to be placed under the authority of Hegai. Esther also was taken to the royal palace to be under the authority of Hegai, who was overseeing the women. 9 This young woman pleased him, and she found favor with him. He quickly provided her with her cosmetics and her rations; he also provided her with the seven specially chosen young women who were from the palace. He then transferred her and her young women to the best quarters in the harem. 10 Now Esther had not disclosed her people or her lineage, for Mordecai had instructed her not to do so.
21 But a suitable day came, when Herod gave a banquet on his birthday for his court officials, military commanders, and leaders of Galilee. 22 When his daughter Herodias came in and danced, she pleased Herod and his dinner guests. The king said to the girl, “Ask me for whatever you want and I will give it to you.” 23 He swore to her, “Whatever you ask I will give you, up to half my kingdom.” 24 So she went out and said to her mother, “What should I ask for?” Her mother said, “The head of John the baptizer.”
Notes and References
"... Despite the general consensus that Esther is not strongly present in the Gospels, if at all, there has been some isolated dissension from this point of view. Following on from the discussion surrounding the influence of the book of Esther and/or the Elijah cycle on the Markan account of the beheading of John the Baptist a smaller discussion has arisen about the background to Matthew 14:3-12. In Matthew’s account the story has been abridged, and no longer includes the textual similarity with the book of Esther found in Mark 6:23. It is as though Matthew intentionally “lessens the Old Testament reminiscence of Jezebel and Esther.” Blomberg has nevertheless identified a possible “echo” of Esther 2:9 in Matthew 14:6, where Esther and the daughter of Herodias both please their respective kings in language that is similar to Mark 6:22 ... One is still left with the impression that Matthew’s account has lessened the possible allusions to the book of Esther ..."
Lees, D.M. Intertextual Ripples of the Book of Esther: An Evaluation of Σταυρωθήτω and Ἰουδαΐζω in the New Testament (pp. 171-172) Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, 2018