5 Lessons From the Life of Queen Vashti

In the Bible, there are numerous records of valiant women, mistresses of households and prophetesses. Just like every other woman, Queen Vashti is a public figure whose story was glossed over and in hindsight, nothing can be learnt from her. However, 2 Timothy 3:16-17 has made us realise that no scripture was written for the fun of it or to fill up the pages.

According to the Persian history, Queen Vashti was reported to be the granddaughter of Nebuchadnezzar and Belshazzar was her father. On the night Belshazzar was slain, Darius adopted her and raised her as a child bride for his son, Xerxes. This background shows us the fact that Vashti grew up in the palace and was raised in the precepts and customs of the people which brings to thoughts what lessons we could glean from her.

1.Vashti was a party lover

Growing up in a family where big parties are thrown on a regular basis, it is no surprise that Vashti as queen was able to throw a big banquet for the Royal house(Esther 1:9). This trait of hers was also a helping factor and served as a ready-made prototype Esther could follow when Esther wanted to make her request to the king. It was recorded that she threw a banquet and invited the king (Esther 6:14, Esther 7:1). The tradition of throwing parties was laid by Queen Vashti.

As believers, wherever we find ourselves, we all, like Esther should find out the tradition of a place so that the system can be endeared towards us. Following the tradition, as long as it does not stand against the principles of God's word places you on a higher plane than starting from the first principles.

2. She was a good manager

The King, Xerxes could not manage the Ministry of Women Affairs so, his party was aimed towards satisfying only the men but Vashti, as his wife and minister in charge of the ministry rose and took it upon herself to tend to the cause of the women in the kingdom.

This trait of hers is important in our journey today as believers in relating with unbelievers who might be our bosses or leaders. Although their plans might not include us either deliberately or as an oversight, we must learn to handle whatever department has been given to us with utmost care and intentionality.

3. Vashti refused to compromise.

Vashti's case in those days was that of obeying or losing her life. She was not ignorant of the fact that her refusal to obey the king would lead to her being deposed or dead. But, we learnt from her that she stood her ground and refused to be used as an object of comparison by the king to his men.

The same applies to us as believers. There is no worse punishment than death so, in whatsoever you do, always uphold your firm belief and do not compromise regardless of the threat coming your way. God is able to save you and protect you from harm's way.

4. She made a strong decision that protected herself and other women

Esther 1:10-11 says, "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,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."

Imagine a scenario of drunk men, some vomiting, some burping loudly and the rest with glazed eyes shouting and clamouring for the queen of a nation to appear nude with only her royal crown on. That was a debasement of human dignity which Vashti refused to be a part of.

Although her behaviour caused the anger of the king and she lost her throne, it is undeniable that Vashti's single action protected her dignity and that of other women in the kingdom because if she had gone as required, then, other women were at risk of being abused, maltreated and rendered without dignity. This is because whatever happens to the queen is a reflection of what was to come upon the women of the kingdom and vice versa.

Her decision, thus, shows her comportment with self dignity and honour.

5. She paid the price for her disobedience

1 Samuel 15:22b says, "Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams."

Although Queen Vashti had enough justifications as to why she disobeyed the imperial order, it is no news that her act of disobedience cost her a lot.

This means that at every point in a believer's life, no matter your conviction, there is a place of obedience to constituted authorities and in the situation where their commands are against our beliefs, we must trust God for wisdom in presenting our cause.

Queen Esther also disobeyed the king in visiting him without being asked for, yet, she did not lose her life because she had prayed.

Every believer is expected not to lead life ordinarily but to pray at every point so that there will be enough diffusion of the wisdom of God in you that even earthly kings cannot refuse you.

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