Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Til Death Do We Part – King Ahasuerus/Queen Esther

Queen Esther in front of King Ahasuerus
The marriage of King Ahasuerus and Queen Esther is the basis of the wonderful movie "One Night With The King." Often Christian films tend to be of poor quality—the acting, the sets—but this movie was a feast for the senses. I love the fact that they kept to the Biblical account.

King Ahasuerus (also known as Xerxes) had a wife named Vashti. At a time of feasts she held her own and when her husband ordered a royal comand to appear at his banquet she refused. This enraged the King because this was a public humilitation. It was decided that Queen Vashti would never be allowed to appear before the King, and she would be replaced.

Hadassah, a young Jewish girl being raised by her Uncle Mordecei was gathered with the other virgins in the area to be brought before the King. Mordecei had instructed Hadassah to change her name to Esther to hide the fact that she was a Jew. She was chosen, among the other women, to be brought to the palace to replace Queen Vashti.

Queen Esther from "One Night With the King"
During this time a man named Haman, a high official, was filled with fury when Mordecei wouldn't bow down to him. Haman used his hate to plot against the Jews. Haman convinced the King to decree that all Jews were to be killed.

Queen Esther was asked by Mordecei to speak to the King about the decree and save her people. Queen Esther took a mighty big gamble—she appeared before the King without her presence being commanded. But, Esther found favor in his sight. When the King asked what she wanted, she asked that he come back to another feast the next day. At the second feast she made her request—that he save her people, the Jews.

The King honored her request by allowing the Jews to defend themselves. Esther exposed the wickedness of Haman and was granted his property. The gallows that Haman had built for Mordecei was used to hang Haman himself.

Queen Esther's love for her people helped her find love with her King.


Here's the trailer (you've got to see this movie):

7 comments:

Mrs. Wilt said...

Oh my goodness, Kim! We watched this tonight (thanks to you loaning it to us) and it was WONDERFUL! A must-have for our video library. Thank you for the recommendation! :o)

Lilith said...

It seems great, but aren't you disturbed by the fact that the king was already married when he fell in love with another woman ?

Kim said...

Lilith-

You ask a very good question. I am disturbed by the fact that he was married. But, I am also disturbed by the fact that the king rounded up virgins to take them into his harem and decided which one he would like to marry. Esther had no choice about going to the harem and no choice that she was chosen to become the next wife. But through hard work, determination and the right attitude she was able to gain the respect and love from the king and in the process was also able to save a whole nation.

The Old Testament is filled with disturbing situations for those of us who live in the 21st century. I have found it hard to believe that Jacob would work seven years to marry his beloved Rachel and then be tricked by his father-in-law into marrying the older sister Leah. Then the same father-in-law agreed to let Jacob work another seven years and marry Rachel also. We tend to look at the past with "the glasses" of morality and modesty of the time and place that we live in. I don't agree with these relationships, but I can acknowledge that it was a marriage that did result in lasting love.

Anonymous said...

I would also like to say I too am somewhat sickened by the whole marriage morals and such, but in the old testament times, it was very normal (and very honourable) to have numerous wives... even if the wives were sisters. Just the way things worked. To have one wife back then would be unthought of.

Emily

Anonymous said...

Remember the King Esther was married to was not of the Christian faith but was considered a pagan. This was why God set out the old testament law for His people to follow. First to set them apart from the other nations but also so that he could keep a pure line for the Christ to be born. Esther was God's way to preserve the nation of Israel so that God's promise to Abraham, Isaac, and Jocob would be fulfilled by Christ's coming.

Anonymous said...

There are two incorrect things in One night with the king.
1 Mordecai was[hadassah]Esther's cousin, not her uncle.
2 Esther told Mordecai to have the Jews fast 3 days, not 1.
Otherwise I really like this movie, it is pretty accurate.
ShaRon

Timothy said...

Regarding the number of days to fast... Esther should have asked for 3 days of fasting because that's what the Bible says she asked the Jews to do. (Esther 4:16) I'm not sure why you're thinking it was only 1 day.