Amplified Bible

Esther 1

The Banquets of the King

1It was in the days of Ahasuerus ([a]Xerxes) who reigned from India to Ethiopia (Cush) over 127 provinces, in those days when King Ahasuerus sat on his royal throne which was at the citadel in [b]Susa [the capital of the Persian Empire], in the third year of his reign he held a banquet for all his officials and his attendants. The army officers of Persia and Media, the nobles and the officials of the provinces were there in his presence. And he displayed the riches of his glorious kingdom and the splendor of his great majesty for many days, 180 days in all.

When these days were completed, the king held a banquet for all the people who were present at the citadel in Susa [the capital], from the greatest [in importance] to the least, a seven-day feast in the courtyard of the garden of the king’s palace. There were curtains (draperies) of fine white and violet linen fastened with cords of fine purple linen to silver rings and marble columns. The couches of gold and silver rested on a mosaic floor of [c]porphyry, marble, mother-of-pearl, and precious colored stones. Drinks were served in various kinds of golden goblets, and the royal wine was plentiful, in accordance with the generosity of the king. The drinking was carried on in accordance with the law; no one was compelled [to drink], for the king had directed each official of his household to comply with each guest’s wishes. Queen Vashti also held a [separate] banquet for the women in the palace of King Ahasuerus.

Queen Vashti’s Refusal

10 On the seventh day, when the king’s heart was joyful with wine (in high spirits), he commanded Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, Abagtha, Zethar, and Carkas, the seven [d]eunuchs who served in the presence of King Ahasuerus [as his attendants], 11 to bring Queen Vashti before the king, [e]wearing her royal crown (high turban), to display her beauty before the people and the officials, for she was lovely to see. 12 But Queen Vashti refused to come at the king’s command, which was delivered [to her] by the eunuchs. So the king became extremely angry and burned with rage.

13 Then the king spoke to the wise men who understood the times [asking for their advice]—for it was the custom of the king to speak before all those who were familiar with law and legal matters— 14 and who were close to him [as advisors]: Carshena, Shethar, Admatha, Tarshish, Meres, Marsena, and Memucan, the seven officials of Persia and Media who had access to the king and were ranked highest in the kingdom. 15 [He said,] “According to the law, what is to be done with Queen Vashti because she did not obey the command of King Ahasuerus which was conveyed by the eunuchs?” 16 And Memucan answered in the presence of the king and the officials, “Vashti the queen has not only wronged the king but [also] all the officials (royal representatives) and all the peoples who are in all the provinces of King Ahasuerus. 17 For the queen’s conduct will become known to all women, causing them to look on their husbands with contempt (disrespect), since they will say, ‘King Ahasuerus commanded Queen Vashti to be brought before him, but she did not come.’ 18 This [very] day the ladies of Persia and Media who have heard of the queen’s refusal will speak [in the same way] to all the king’s officials, and there will be plenty of contempt and anger. 19 If it pleases the king, let a royal command be issued by him and let it be written in the laws of the Persians and Medes so that it cannot be repealed or modified, that Vashti is [f]no longer to come before King Ahasuerus; and let the king give her royal position to another who is better and more worthy than she. 20 So when the king’s great decree is proclaimed throughout his [extensive] kingdom, all women will give honor to their husbands, from the great to the insignificant.”

21 This statement (advice) pleased the king and the officials, and the king did what Memucan proposed. 22 So he sent letters to all the royal provinces, to each province in its own script and to each people in their own language, saying that every man should be the master and rule in his own home and that [g]he should speak [in the household] in the language of his own people.

Notas al pie

  1. Esther 1:1 Ahasuerus’ Greek name was Xerxes (I), his Persian name was Khshayarshan. Xerxes I (also known as Xerxes the Great the son of Darius the Great), ruled 486-465 b.c. He is the Xerxes who invaded Greece, was stopped temporarily at Thermopylae, defeated at the naval battle at Salamis, and nearly annihilated at Plataea (479 b.c.). The French excavations at Susa in 1880-1890 uncovered the great palace of Xerxes, where Esther would have lived. The building covered two and one-half acres. The finds at Susa from this period were so astonishing that the Louvre in Paris devoted two large rooms to the exhibition of the treasures. Xerxes’ tomb (looted in antiquity) is believed to be among the rock-cut tombs located at Naqsh-e Rajab, an archeological site in Iran about ten miles northwest of the site of ancient Persepolis.
  2. Esther 1:2 Susa was located about a hundred and fifty miles east of the Tigris River. The site, now modern day Shush, Iran, is considered to be one of the world’s oldest continuously inhabited cities. An ancient tomb presumed to be that of Daniel is located in the area.
  3. Esther 1:6 An Egyptian rock of feldspar crystals embedded in a dark red or purple groundmass used as flooring.
  4. Esther 1:10 Eunuchs were the men who were placed in charge of the king’s harem, and for that reason had been castrated.
  5. Esther 1:11 According to Jewish tradition Ahasuerus’ guests demanded that Vashti be naked, except for her royal turban to confirm that she was the queen and not just a servant-girl. She pleaded with Ahasuerus using several arguments, one of which was that if the guests found her beautiful, they would want to ravish her and kill him; and if not, her lack of beauty would disgrace him.
  6. Esther 1:19 The intent may have been simply to confine Vashti to the king’s harem and put another wife on the throne. The ancient rabbis said, however, that when the king accepted the advice, he ordered that Vashti be beheaded and her head brought to him on a platter.
  7. Esther 1:22 In recognition of the position of her husband a foreign-born wife was to speak his language.

Nueva Biblia al Día

Ester 1

Destitución de la reina Vasti

1El rey Asuero,[a] que reinó sobre ciento veintisiete provincias que se extendían desde la India hasta *Cus, estableció su trono real en la ciudadela de Susa.

En el tercer año de su reinado ofreció un banquete para todos sus funcionarios y servidores, al que asistieron los jefes militares de Persia y Media, y los magistrados y los gobernadores de las provincias, y durante ciento ochenta días les mostró la enorme riqueza de su reino y la esplendorosa gloria de su majestad.

Pasado este tiempo, el rey ofreció otro banquete, que duró siete días, para todos los que se encontraban en la ciudadela de Susa, tanto los más importantes como los de menor importancia. Este banquete tuvo lugar en el jardín interior de su palacio, el cual lucía cortinas blancas y azules, sostenidas por cordones de lino blanco y tela púrpura, los cuales pasaban por anillos de plata sujetos a columnas de mármol. También había sofás de oro y plata sobre un piso de mosaicos de pórfido, mármol, madreperla y otras piedras preciosas. En copas de oro de las más variadas formas se servía el vino real, el cual corría a raudales, como era de esperarse del rey. Todos los invitados podían beber cuanto quisieran, pues los camareros habían recibido instrucciones del rey de servir a cada uno lo que deseara.

La reina Vasti, por su parte, ofreció también un banquete para las mujeres en el palacio del rey Asuero.

10 Al séptimo día, como a causa del vino el rey Asuero estaba muy alegre, les ordenó a los siete *eunucos que le servían —Meumán, Biztá, Jarboná, Bigtá, Abagtá, Zetar y Carcás— 11 que llevaran a su presencia a la reina, ceñida con la corona real, a fin de exhibir su belleza ante los pueblos y sus dignatarios, pues realmente era muy hermosa. 12 Pero cuando los eunucos le comunicaron la orden del rey, la reina se negó a ir. Esto contrarió mucho al rey, y se enfureció.

13 De inmediato el rey consultó a los sabios conocedores de leyes,[b] porque era costumbre que en cuestiones de ley y justicia el rey consultara a los expertos. 14 Los más allegados a él eran: Carsena, Setar, Admata, Tarsis, Meres, Marsená y Memucán, los siete funcionarios de Persia y Media que tenían acceso especial a la presencia del rey y ocupaban los puestos más altos en el reino.

15 —Según la ley, ¿qué se debe hacer con la reina Vasti por haber desobedecido la orden del rey transmitida por los eunucos? —preguntó el rey.

16 En presencia del rey y de los funcionarios, Memucán respondió:

—La reina Vasti no sólo ha ofendido a Su Majestad, sino también a todos los funcionarios y a todos los pueblos de todas las provincias del reino. 17 Porque todas las mujeres se enterarán de la conducta de la reina, y esto hará que desprecien a sus esposos, pues dirán: “El rey Asuero mandó que la reina Vasti se presentara ante él, pero ella no fue.” 18 El día en que las mujeres de la nobleza de Persia y de Media se enteren de la conducta de la reina, les responderán de la misma manera a todos los dignatarios de Su Majestad. ¡Entonces no habrá fin al desprecio y a la discordia!

19 »Por lo tanto, si le parece bien a Su Majestad, emita un decreto real, el cual se inscribirá con carácter irrevocable en las leyes de Persia y Media: que Vasti nunca vuelva a presentarse ante Su Majestad, y que el título de reina se lo otorgue a otra mejor que ella. 20 Así, cuando el edicto real se dé a conocer por todo su inmenso reino, todas las mujeres respetarán a sus esposos, desde los más importantes hasta los menos importantes.

21 Al rey y a sus funcionarios les pareció bien ese consejo, de modo que el rey hizo lo que había propuesto Memucán: 22 envió cartas por todo el reino, a cada provincia en su propia escritura y a cada pueblo en su propio idioma, proclamando en la lengua de cada pueblo que todo hombre debe ejercer autoridad sobre su familia.

Notas al pie

  1. Ester 1:1 Asuero. Variante hebrea de Jerjes, nombre persa; así en el resto de este libro.
  2. Ester 1:13 leyes (lectura probable); los tiempos (TM).