The vision of Obadiah.
Thus says the Lord God concerning Edom:
We have heard a report from the Lord,
and a messenger has been sent among the nations:
“Rise up! Let us rise against her for battle!”
2 Behold, I will make you small among the nations;
you shall be utterly despised.
3 The pride of your heart has deceived you,
you who live in the clefts of the rock,
in your lofty dwelling,
who say in your heart,
“Who will bring me down to the ground?”
4 Though you soar aloft like the eagle,
though your nest is set among the stars,
from there I will bring you down,
declares the Lord.
5 If thieves came to you,
if plunderers came by night—
how you have been destroyed!—
would they not steal only enough for themselves?
If grape gatherers came to you,
would they not leave gleanings?
6 How Esau has been pillaged,
his treasures sought out!
7 All your allies have driven you to your border;
those at peace with you have deceived you;
they have prevailed against you;
those who eat your bread have set a trap beneath you—
you have no understanding.
8 Will I not on that day, declares the Lord,
destroy the wise men out of Edom,
and understanding out of Mount Esau?
9 And your mighty men shall be dismayed, O Teman,
so that every man from Mount Esau will be cut off by slaughter.
10 Because of the violence done to your brother Jacob,
shame shall cover you,
and you shall be cut off forever.
11 On the day that you stood aloof,
on the day that strangers carried off his wealth
and foreigners entered his gates
and cast lots for Jerusalem,
you were like one of them.
12 But do not gloat over the day of your brother
in the day of his misfortune;
do not rejoice over the people of Judah
in the day of their ruin;
do not boast
in the day of distress.
13 Do not enter the gate of my people
in the day of their calamity;
do not gloat over his disaster
in the day of his calamity;
do not loot his wealth
in the day of his calamity.
14 Do not stand at the crossroads
to cut off his fugitives;
do not hand over his survivors
in the day of distress.
15 For the day of the Lord is near upon all the nations.
As you have done, it shall be done to you;
your deeds shall return on your own head.
16 For as you have drunk on my holy mountain,
so all the nations shall drink continually;
they shall drink and swallow,
and shall be as though they had never been.
17 But in Mount Zion there shall be those who escape,
and it shall be holy,
and the house of Jacob shall possess their own possessions.
18 The house of Jacob shall be a fire,
and the house of Joseph a flame,
and the house of Esau stubble;
they shall burn them and consume them,
and there shall be no survivor for the house of Esau,
for the Lord has spoken.
19 Those of the Negeb shall possess Mount Esau,
and those of the Shephelah shall possess the land of the Philistines;
they shall possess the land of Ephraim and the land of Samaria,
and Benjamin shall possess Gilead.
20 The exiles of this host of the people of Israel
shall possess the land of the Canaanites as far as Zarephath,
and the exiles of Jerusalem who are in Sepharad
shall possess the cities of the Negeb.
21 Saviors shall go up to Mount Zion
to rule Mount Esau,
and the kingdom shall be the Lord‘s.
The Holy Bible, English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
Questions to Consider:
1. What is the theme or purpose of the book of Obadiah? What is the historical backdrop of this book? Why is it important to understand Scripture in light of its historical and cultural setting?
2. Which nation is God speaking directly to in this book? (Who is “you” in verses 1-4?) But which nation would have been the one to receive this book of prophecy? (20) Where do the terms “Jacob” (10, 18) and “Edom/Esau” (1, 6, 18) come from originally, and why are these men’s names used to refer to two nations in this passage? “Jacob” refers to which nation? “Edom/Esau” refers to which nation?
3. Why is God bringing judgment upon Edom? (15, 10) What can we learn from this passage about God’s judgment upon the enemies of His people both in this immediate situation with Israel, and in the future final day of judgment? How does the message of Obadiah work hand in hand with the message of these passages?
4. The theme of most of the Old Testament prophetic books is a warning to God’s people, Israel, to repent of their sin before God judges them. In Obadiah, we see God’s promise of judgment for the sin of a pagan nation. What does this teach us about God’s view of sin and repentance? How do Obadiah, God’s judgment on Israel, and Romans 2:1-11 show that God is “no respecter of persons” when it comes to judging sin?
5. How does knowing that God is a righteous and just judge impact your prayer life, your worship, your sense of urgency in sharing the gospel, and your desire to take vengeance on others?