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Esther 1:18-19

Context
1:18 And this very day the noble ladies of Persia and Media who have heard the matter concerning the queen will respond in the same way to all the royal officials, and there will be more than enough contempt and anger! 1:19 If the king is so inclined, 1  let a royal edict go forth from him, and let it be written in the laws of Persia and Media that cannot be repealed, 2  that Vashti 3  may not come into the presence of King Ahasuerus, and let the king convey her royalty to another 4  who is more deserving than she. 5 

1 sn Heb “If upon the king it is good”; KJV “If it please the king.” Deferential language was common in ancient Near Eastern court language addressing a despot; it occurs often in Esther.

2 sn Laws…that cannot be repealed. On the permanence of the laws of Media and Persia see also Esth 8:8 and Dan 6:8, 12, 15.

3 sn Previously in this chapter the word “queen” accompanies Vashti’s name (cf. vv. 9, 11, 12, 15, 16, 17). But here, in anticipation of her demotion, the title is dropped.

4 tn Heb “her neighbor”; NIV “someone else.”

5 tn Heb “who is better than she.” The reference is apparently to worthiness of the royal position as demonstrated by compliance with the king’s wishes, although the word טוֹב (tob, “good”) can also be used of physical beauty. Cf. NAB, NASB, NLT “more worthy than she.”



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