Refuse the King?
...when the heart of the king was merry with wine, he commanded...the seven chamberlains... bring Vashti the queen before the king...to shew the people...her beauty, for she was fair to look on.
The banquet hall at Shushan the palace was impressively beautiful. The King provided food at this banquet which was delightful and extravagant along with the over abundance of wine to be indulged. When the king’s heart was merry with much wine, he requested the presence of Queen Vashti (his most beautiful and prized possession) to come before his guests to show her beauty; “for she was fair to look on.” Queen Vashti, for some reason we do not know, refused to obey the command of the king. The queen’s disregard for King Ahasuerus’ authority made him very angry with her.
Usually, Persian queens ate at the king’s table; but, Queen Vashti was having her own banquet for the women of the kingdom and must have feared this drunken group. Nonetheless, she did go against the request of the king of Persia and in doing so, brought judgment upon herself. The queen’s conduct would be used as an example to all women that none would repeat such defiance especially when it came to the king and his seven princes in counsel. The Law of the Medes and Persians could not be reversed or repealed, therefore, Queen Vashti would no longer be allowed to come before the king.
Much speculation has been given why Queen Vashti defied her husband. Although we cannot condone a wife’s unwillingness to be submissive to her husband, it is fair to to say, we can understand her unwillingness with regards to the drunken state of her husband and those in his presence. All seems quite unfair for Queen Vashti, but God, in His providential care, used this difficult plan to move in the heart of the king and change the course of history for the Jewish people.
Lord, may I be mindful of Your divine foresight in my life and Your constant care for me.