The Sins of Edom - Obadiah

The Sins of Edom

Obadiah 1-21

        The book of Obadiah is the shortest book in the Old Testament.  No one seems to know who this prophet was.  He probably wrote the book after the captivity of Jerusalem and Judah in 586 b.c., but no one seems to know for sure.  Even though the prophet addressed the Edomites, who were descendants of Esau, the twin brother of Jacob, he had a message for the house of Jacob...and for us today!

        The Edomites were guilty of the sin of pride.  "The pride of your heart has deceived you."  Pride is always deceptive.  Archaeologists discovered the ruins of Petra in 1812, and believe that this mountain fortress/city was the capital of Edom.  The people thought that they were safe, dwelling "in the clefts of the rock," above all and out of danger.  They had set their nest among the stars, but God was about to bring them down.

        The sin of pride is never alone.  In the case of the Edomites it began with their passivity toward the captivity of the descendants of Jacob.  At first they just "stood on the other side," watching strangers carry away God's people.  Next they "rejoiced over the children of Judah in the day of their destruction."  Finally, they participated in the calamity, as they "stood at the crossroads to cut off those among them who escaped."  How terrible!

        But sin reaps its own reward.  "As you have done, it shall be done to you; your reprisal (or reward) shall return upon your own head....  And they shall be as though they had never been."  Obadiah warned, "But the house of Esau shall be stubble...and no survivor shall remain of the house of Esau."  Today there is not a trace of any Edomites.  They reaped total destruction.

        God judges nations.  "Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people."  Proverbs 14:34.  A fearful day of the judgment of nations is coming.  "For the day of the Lord upon all nations is near." Obadiah 15.  The prophet Isaiah wrote, "Wail, for the day of the Lord is at hand!  It will come as destruction from the Almighty."  Isaiah 13:6.

        But this prophetic book, which was addressed to the gloating Edomites, is part of the sacred Scriptures of Jacob's descendants, with an encouraging message of hope for them.  "But on Mount Zion there shall be deliverance, and there shall be holiness; the house of Jacob shall possess their possessions....  Then saviors shall come to Mount Zion to judge the mountains of Esau, and the kingdom shall be the Lord's."  Obadiah 17, 21.  The nation of Israel has a bright future.  "Thus says the Lord: 'I will return to Zion, and dwell in the midst of Jerusalem."  Zechariah 8:3.


        Father, we pray for our nation.  Raise up spiritual men and women who will lead in ways pleasing to You.  We need a great awakening throughout the land.  In Jesus' name.  Amen!


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Scripture taken from the
New King James Version.
Copyright ©
1979, 1980, 1982
by Thomas Nelson, Inc.
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