Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Whole Bible
back to: Esther
Book: Esther
Chapter: 1

The royal Feast of Ahasuerus. (1-9) Vashti's refusal to
appear, The King's decree. (10-22)

1-9 The pride of Ahasuerus's Heart rising with the grandeur of
his kingdom, he made an extravagant Feast. This was vain Glory.
Better is a dinner of herbs with quietness, than this Banquet of
Wine, with all the noise and tumult that must have attended it.
But except Grace prevails in the Heart, self-exaltation and
self-indulgence, in one form or another, will be the ruling
principle. Yet none did compel; So that if any drank to excess,
it was their own fault. This caution of a Heathen Prince, even
when he would show his generosity, may shame many called
Christians, who, under pretence of sending the health round,
send Sin round, and Death with it. There is a woe to them that
do So; let them read it, and tremble, Hab 2:15,16.

10-22 Ahasuerus's Feast ended in heaviness, By his own folly.
Seasons of Peculiar festivity often End in vexation. Superiors
should be careful not to command what may reasonably be
disobeyed. But when Wine is in, men's reason departs from them.
He that had rule over 127 provinces, had No rule over his own
Spirit. But whether the Passion or the policy of the King was
served By this decree, God's Providence made way for Esther to
the Crown, and defeated Haman's wicked project, even before it
had entered into his Heart, and he arrived at his power. Let us
rejoice that the Lord reigns, and will overrule the Madness or
folly of mankind to promote his own Glory, and the safety and
happiness of his people.