by Christina Farris
1 Now it came to pass in the days of Ahasuerus, (this is Ahasuerus which reigned, from India even unto Ethiopia, over an hundred and seven and twenty provinces:)
2 That in those days, when the king Ahasuerus sat on the throne of his kingdom, which was in Shushan the palace,
3 In the third year of his reign, he made a feast unto all his princes and his servants; the power of Persia and Media, the nobles and princes of the provinces, being before him:
4 When he shewed the riches of his glorious kingdom and the honour of his excellent majesty many days, even an hundred and fourscore days.
5 And when these days were expired, the king made a feast unto all the people that were present in Shushan the palace, both unto great and small, seven days, in the court of the garden of the king's palace;
6 Where were white, green, and blue, hangings, fastened with cords of fine linen and purple to silver rings and pillars of marble: the beds were of gold and silver, upon a pavement of red, and blue, and white, and black, marble.
7 And they gave them drink in vessels of gold, (the vessels being diverse one from another,) and royal wine in abundance, according to the state of the king.
8 And the drinking was according to the law; none did compel: for so the king had appointed to all the officers of his house, that they should do according to every man's pleasure.
9 Also Vashti the queen made a feast for the women in the royal house which belonged to king Ahasuerus.
10 On the seventh day, when the heart of the king was merry with wine, he commanded Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, and Abagtha, Zethar, and Carcas, the seven chamberlains that served in the presence of Ahasuerus the king,
11 To bring Vashti the queen before the king with the crown royal, to shew the people and the princes her beauty: for she was fair to look on.
12 But the queen Vashti refused to come at the king's commandment by his chamberlains: therefore was the king very wroth, and his anger burned in him.
13 Then the king said to the wise men, which knew the times, (for so was the king's manner toward all that knew law and judgment:
14 And the next unto him was Carshena, Shethar, Admatha, Tarshish, Meres, Marsena, and Memucan, the seven princes of Persia and Media, which saw the king's face, and which sat the first in the kingdom;)
15 What shall we do unto the queen Vashti according to law, because she hath not performed the commandment of the king Ahasuerus by the chamberlains?
16 And Memucan answered before the king and the princes, Vashti the queen hath not done wrong to the king only, but also to all the princes, and to all the people that are in all the provinces of the king Ahasuerus.
17 For this deed of the queen shall come abroad unto all women, so that they shall despise their husbands in their eyes, when it shall be reported, The king Ahasuerus commanded Vashti the queen to be brought in before him, but she came not.
18 Likewise shall the ladies of Persia and Media say this day unto all the king's princes, which have heard of the deed of the queen. Thus shall there arise too much contempt and wrath.
19 If it please the king, let there go a royal commandment from him, and let it be written among the laws of the Persians and the Medes, that it be not altered, That Vashti come no more before king Ahasuerus; and let the king give her royal estate unto another that is better than she.
20 And when the king's decree which he shall make shall be published throughout all his empire, (for it is great,) all the wives shall give to their husbands honour, both to great and small.
21 And the saying pleased the king and the princes; and the king did according to the word of Memucan:
22 For he sent letters into all the king's provinces, into every province according to the writing thereof, and to every people after their language, that every man should bear rule in his own house, and that it should be published according to the language of every people. To be a leaders wife and not in submission in ancient day was consider wrong, not only by the king but princes of the land, under Persia rule. There are many crosses in scripture and one is concerning woman. Woman was to obey one's own husband. What is public humiliation of a wife, verse the public humiliation of a king. Targum, a Caldean/tongue of Babylon dialect adds the word naked in verse 11. Whether naked or not, Vashti refused to come before the Persian King and his drinking friends of royality. King want the queen to appear before his dinner guest to show her off like a debutante was just as humilitating to the king as what he had ask the queen to do. Sometimes the error of our folly is to see both sides of a story. When the cross came to Vashti to come show herself to the royal men, she refused. For whatever reason she refused. Vashti was also giving a dinner party for the women of royalty. This did not help one bit the situation, for the men decided her refusal would make their wives refuse them as well.
In truth it all about control of the sexes the cross Vashti would have to bear for centuries and even woman of the last century. No doubt there are times when women over step their bounds as do men, but both sides need to be respected. To appear in front of drunk men would been like a harlot appearing before a group that would not appreciate her beauty. Her beauty was for her husband eyes only, except when standing with him in service as queen. Not to appear as a harlot for the kings pleasure. He disgraced her when he order her to come wearing the crown and as the targum says naked. exposed in the since of flaunting her beauty.
By refusing the King, she also showed her lack of respect for his authority before the royals. By doing so, it could cause other woman to follow suit. After all did not the woman's movement in the USA not cause a stir across our country and still is doing so today. Women liberation of rights still strive. What is women liberation all about but equality of woman with men. The cross of woman to be treated as equals to men, is a subject I agree with, but I generally silent on as many woman do so, in regards to trying hard to respect their husbands. When it comes down to it, the princes that came for a meal had no regard to protect the king and queen from humiliation. They forced a situation of not only divorce, but humiliation for the queen, as well in someways the king. The King is now looked at as being an ogre before the people. Not perhaps a king of love and hope to the people. One to be feared and obeyed, no matter how humiliating what he asked one to do is.
Vashti stood her ground and lost her crown. The king gave rule over his whole land that all wives are to honor their husbands. What is honor if the one demanding honor gives no honor back. It like religious freedom declared in our land and if government officials tries and take it. What is freedom if those in charge stomp all over it. What is freedom is leaders demands loyalty of his people, despite the constitution. Have we lost the battle of our freedom if our freedom is in jeopardy based on loyalties and if you do not do as I say their is consequences pay. This is not freedom, nor respect for someone else.
Bad leaders make bad decision based on their own interest. Interest for their family and friends. A good leader decides to help all people, even if it goes against themselves at times. Do you think God enjoyed giving freedom to the people when they disobeyed him in the garden and even in our world today. Is that not why we are in this world to decide who do we want to follow? God gives us a choice here on earth. In the New Jerusalem that decision as been made, we following after God, Christ and the Holy Spirit. God even turned people over to Idols Roman 1 says. The one fact still remains God allows sin to remain only for a time period, just like the rise and fall of kingdoms. It easy to tell a devil you got rights, but also to tell them the truth they are fixing to split hell wide open for their sin of adultery against God. First thing we must do his choose who we will serve God or Satan. If we choose God, (Father, Son and Holy Spirit), to believe by faith and to follow then our fear of death is gone, the world around us is only a temporary one.
Vashti, I have no clue what she believed, but her convictions were strong enough to not allow her husband to humiliate her despite the consequence and she still was humiliated but not to her shame, but to her cross she would bear for standing in opposition to the king. As Christians sometimes we need to use our freedom and not to use our freedom to take that stand that does not cause our own humiliation, but to make our enemy to appear as the ogre he really is. To speak truth in all matters.
Dear Heavenly Father teach mean to honor their wives so what they request will also bring honor to them and allow women to take a clear stand for the cross of equality, and respect, not a road of dishonor but a road of honor. In Jesus precious name, Amen.
Continual Scripture Study for Devotion:
Colossians 3:17-19 KJV