I started reading chapter 1 but couldn’t stop. I had to tear myself away about chapter 5. You’ve got all the elements of a contemporary blockbuster hit movie – kings throwing parties that last for 6 months, wine and debauchery, women and song, betrayal and revenge. It’s a real page-turner! It begins with King Xerxes (what a cül name) half-drunk and out-of-control calling for his beautiful Queen Vashti so he can show her off to all his tipsy nobelmen and provincial officials. Long story short, she refuses and throws the party into quite a tizzy. His friends tell the king that this does not look good. They surmise that now all the wives in all the provinces will hear of Vashti’s behavior and will start acting in a similar manner – unless you do something! So these half-drunk wise-guys convince the half-drunk king to draw up a decree that Queen Vashti be banished forever.
22 He sent letters to all parts of the empire, to each province in its own script and language, proclaiming that every man should be the ruler of his home.
“Every man should be the ruler of his home,” it said. How unfortunate the context in which this came about. I wonder what would have been the result if this king, who apparently had a thing with parties, treated his wife with dignity and respect. Wine was in play, to be sure, but I get the feeling that she must have felt like a trophy or an object, not a cherished wife. But he was king! Yes, true – we’ll see over the next week or so what kind of trouble this seemingly simple situation turned into. I expect the king eventually wished he could have re-phrased his initial request to his Queen.
We can’t take back the words once they leave our mouths. That’s why we need to be very careful when we are about to speak – particularly if there are other influences involved (i.e. alcohol). Here’s what the Bible says:
“My dear brothers and sisters, be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.” James 1:19
What ensues is pretty exciting…stay tuned!peace,