Now the king was attracted to Esther more than to any of the other women, and she won his favor and approval more than any of the other virgins. So he set a royal crown on her head and made her queen instead of Vashti. And the king gave a great banquet, Esther’s banquet, for all his nobles and officials. He proclaimed a holiday throughout the provinces and distributed gifts with royal liberality.
Xerxes knew how to throw a party! In the third year of his reign, he gave a bash for his nobles, officials, princes and military leaders that lasted for 180 days! Then a mere week-long banquet was held for all the people from the least to the greatest. On day seven, after he had a little too much to drink, Xerxes sent for Queen Vashti to come and “display her beauty . . . for she was lovely to look at.” (Esther 1:11) When Vashti refused to entertain the drunken nobles, she was banished from the king’s presence, and the search began for a new queen.
That’s the setting for the book of Esther, the only book of the Bible where God’s name is not mentioned, but His sovereign hand is evident in every paragraph on every page. Esther, a Jewess, eventually became the new queen and saved her people from annihilation. And in a divine twist of events, the man who devised the annihilation plan was hung from the gallows that he built to hang Esther’s uncle who had refused to bow before anyone but God.
In this amazing book, we see that God is at work in all the events of life. He is the One who weaves the details of our days together to display His perfect plan. You might think that hearing a certain story, or sleep-depriving indigestion or your position in life are all mere coincidences. But in the book of Esther, what seems trivial today is paramount tomorrow. We know that the same God who guided the events of this book is guiding the events of our lives today.
Father, You never waste our time. Thank You for working all things together for good. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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