In our study of Esther chapter one, we look at how God takes care of His people even when they are disobedient. God has always preserved His people and this book gives us an example of how He does that through some ordinary people. Jerusalem fell to Babylon (modern Iraq) and God's people were taken into exile. Later, Persia (modern Iran) defeated the Babylonians and the king allowed the Israelites to return to Jerusalem to rebuild. (see the books of Ezra and Nehemiah) A minority of the Jewish people went back to Jerusalem. This book tells us of the people that disobeyed God and stayed in Persia. Even though God's name is never mentioned in this book, it is easy to see the hand of God at work behind the scenes to preserve His people.
"This is what happened during the time of Xerxes, the Xerxes who ruled over 127 provinces stretching from India to Cush." NIV translation
We see here that this book is a historical record of actual events that can be verified. We also see that the Persian empire was quite huge as it stretched from India to Ethiopia.
"At that time King Xerxes reigned from his royal throne in the citadel of Susa, and in the third year of his reign he gave a banquet for all his nobles and officials. The military leaders of Persia and Media, the princes, and the nobles of the provinces were present. For a full 180 days he displayed the vast wealth of his kingdom and the splendor and glory of his majesty." NIV translation
The king threw a massive party and anyone who was anyone was there. This banquet was held to get support for the king's plans to attack Greece and expand his kingdom. This party was a way to show the people that the kingdom had the money to pay for the planned war. The party lasted for a full six months in which the king tried to show how great he was.