We love to peer into the private lives of the rich and famous. We are infatuated with their homes, parties, clothes, yachts, bodies, affairs, and scandals. It’s always been that way. Our fascination with fame and fortune is nothing new. Just as reporters give us much more information than we need to know about Johnny Depp, Brittany Spears, Hillary Clinton, Tiger Woods, and many others, so ancient reporters shared fascinating stories about famous kings and queens. The book of Esther seems to begin like an episode of “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.” The writer of Esther begins his account with the report of the king showing off his army and all his riches at a large drinking party. Esther 1:3-4 says, “The army of Persia and Media and the nobles and governors of the provinces were before him, while he showed the riches of his royal glory and the splendor and pomp of his greatness for many days, 180 days.”

It begins with an extravagant drinking party at King Ahasuerus’ palace, where the reader is introduced to some intimate details of the royal family. The party lasted for 180 days followed by another 7-day party during which every commoner in the city was invited to attend and to participate freely in the endless supply of wine!  The motive behind the king’s actions is revealed in Verse 4.  The party was a time “when he showed the riches of his glorious kingdom and the splendor of his excellent majesty for many days…” At the same time, his queen, Vashti, was throwing her own party with the women of the King’s palace. As they both showed off for their friends, their pride was to be the key issue to bring about their downfall. Vashti was going to assert her will over the kings and that would be the end of her.

In 1969, in Pass Christian, Mississippi, a group of people were throwing a “hurricane party” at the Richelieu Apartments as a storm named Camille approached the gulf. When the Police chief pulled up with his lights flashing, he explained that the apartments were in the direct line of the predicted storm and that they needed to clear out. A man with a drink in his hand stepped out onto the second-floor balcony and yelled back, “you clear out, we’re not going anywhere!” Joined by another group of men who laughed and cheered behind him, the police chief continued his rounds. Scientists clocked Camille’s wind speed at over 205 MPH when it hit the coast. News reports later showed that the worst damage came at the little settlement of motels, go-go bars, and gambling houses known as Pass Christian, Mississippi, where some twenty people were killed at a hurricane party in the Richelieu Apartments. Nothing was left of that three-story structure but the foundation; the only survivor was a five-year-old boy found clinging to a mattress the following day. The wisdom of the ages once again proves correct. Proverbs says, “pride always precedes a fall!”  Ephesians 5:1 tells us, “Do not get drunk with wine, which will only ruin you…” The big party that the King threw was leading to something