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Unbrotherly Love

Majoring in the Minors  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  45:44
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Introduction - Background

With only 21 verses to its length Obadiah is the minorest of the minor prophets but his message is no less important and no less applicable for us this morning. For many this book remains obscure and the most interaction you have had with it comes from the short video we just watched. While you may have heard the name before the book is unknown. The message of Obadiah is primarily doom and gloom of judgment and it is not quoted in the New Testament.
However this book merits careful study due to its powerful message about the justice of God. This book speaks to the real danger of the sin of pride and arrogance. Obadiah graphically illustrates through the nation the truth of Proverbs 16:18.
Proverbs 16:18 CSB
18 Pride comes before destruction, and an arrogant spirit before a fall.
Obadiah is the prophet sent to the nation of Edom to pronounce God’s judgment for their treatment of Israel. His name means “servant or worshiper of Yahweh”. Though Obadiah was a common name throughout the biblical period in Israel, I see it as poetic justice God sent Obadiah - worshiper of Yahweh to Edom - who had largely ignored Yahweh and were guilty of great sin against Israel as we will see.
The date of his writing is difficult to determine, though we know from versus 10-14 it is tied to the Edomite assault on Jerusalem. Obadiah wrote shortly after that attack. There were 4 significant invasions of Jerusalem in the Old Testament.
Shishak king of Egypt circa 925 B.C. during the reign of Rehoboam - 1 Kings 14:25-26 2 Chronicles 12.
Philistines and Arabians between 848-841 B.C. during the reign of Jehoram of Judah 2 Chronicles 21:8-20.
Jehoash king of Israel circa 790 B.C. 2 Kings 14 and 2 Chronicles 25.
Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon in the fall of Jerusalem in 586 B.C.
Out of these four only 2 and 4 could possibly fit. Number two is most preferable since Obadiah does not detail the total destruction of Jerusalem, and since Babylon is not specifically mentioned as other prophets do when speaking of the fall of Jerusalem. Obadiah gives a warning to Edom not to repeat the sins of their past, if Jerusalem were destroyed this admonition would have been meaningless. Lastly there is no reference to the destruction of the temple or the deportation of the people. If correct this puts Obadiah as the earliest of the writing prophets and contemporary to Elisha.
Judgment against Edom is mentioned in more Old Testament books than it is against any other foreign nation. Possibly due to their historical background. The animosity between the Edomites and the Israelites is one of the oldest examples of discord in human relationships. Edom is the nation from Esau as Israel is the nation from Jacob.
Genesis 25:21–22 CSB
21 Isaac prayed to the Lord on behalf of his wife because she was childless. The Lord was receptive to his prayer, and his wife Rebekah conceived. 22 But the children inside her struggled with each other, and she said, “Why is this happening to me?” So she went to inquire of the Lord.
Genesis 25:23–24 CSB
23 And the Lord said to her: Two nations are in your womb; two peoples will come from you and be separated. One people will be stronger than the other, and the older will serve the younger. 24 When her time came to give birth, there were indeed twins in her womb.
Genesis 25:25–26 CSB
25 The first one came out red-looking, covered with hair like a fur coat, and they named him Esau. 26 After this, his brother came out grasping Esau’s heel with his hand. So he was named Jacob. Isaac was sixty years old when they were born.
Years later Esau was so hungry he sold his birthright to Jacob for red stew (Edom means red)
Genesis 25:30 CSB
30 He said to Jacob, “Let me eat some of that red stuff, because I’m exhausted.” That is why he was also named Edom.
Jacob would steal the blessing from Esau also and Jacob would flee to escape the wrath of his brother.
Genesis 27:41 CSB
41 Esau held a grudge against Jacob because of the blessing his father had given him. And Esau determined in his heart, “The days of mourning for my father are approaching; then I will kill my brother Jacob.”
Edom is a trouble to Israel throughout the history of the nations.
Edom refused to let Israel pass through their land on their way to the Promised Land
Opposed King Saul
Fought with David and Solomon and was subjected
Fought against Jehoshaphat
Rebelled (successfully) against Jehoram
God spoke to Israel in Deuteronomy 23:7
Deuteronomy 23:7 CSB
7 Do not despise an Edomite, because he is your brother. Do not despise an Egyptian, because you were a resident alien in his land.
Of all human conflict the most painful and difficult to resolve are those between blood relatives. History shows that just about every nation has had a civil war. Civil wars are family feuds on the national level in which brother is killing brother. These disputes are bitter long and deep. Usually at the root of it all is pride.
There are two key verses I see in Obadiah
Obadiah 10 CSB
10 You will be covered with shame and destroyed forever because of violence done to your brother Jacob.
The Lord is speaking out to Edom specifically detailing that their sins were against their very own brother. The second key verse is also the verse dividing this book
Obadiah 15 CSB
15 For the day of the Lord is near, against all the nations. As you have done, it will be done to you; what you deserve will return on your own head.
“As you have done it will be done to you”
This message to Edom is specifically against them for how they treated their brother and so what they have done they will have done to them.
Obadiah 1–2 CSB
1 The vision of Obadiah. This is what the Lord God has said about Edom: We have heard a message from the Lord; an envoy has been sent among the nations: “Rise up, and let’s go to war against her.” 2 Look, I will make you insignificant among the nations; you will be deeply despised.
Obadiah 3–4 CSB
3 Your arrogant heart has deceived you, you who live in clefts of the rock in your home on the heights, who say to yourself, “Who can bring me down to the ground?” 4 Though you seem to soar like an eagle and make your nest among the stars, even from there I will bring you down. This is the Lord’s declaration.
Obadiah 5–6 CSB
5 If thieves came to you, if marauders by night— how ravaged you would be!— wouldn’t they steal only what they wanted? If grape harvesters came to you, wouldn’t they leave a few grapes? 6 How Esau will be pillaged, his hidden treasures searched out!
Obadiah 7–8 CSB
7 Everyone who has a treaty with you will drive you to the border; everyone at peace with you will deceive and conquer you. Those who eat your bread will set a trap for you. He will be unaware of it. 8 In that day— this is the Lord’s declaration— will I not eliminate the wise ones of Edom and those who understand from the hill country of Esau?
Obadiah 9–10 CSB
9 Teman, your warriors will be terrified so that everyone from the hill country of Esau will be destroyed by slaughter. 10 You will be covered with shame and destroyed forever because of violence done to your brother Jacob.
Obadiah 11–12 CSB
11 On the day you stood aloof, on the day strangers captured his wealth, while foreigners entered his city gate and cast lots for Jerusalem, you were just like one of them. 12 Do not gloat over your brother in the day of his calamity; do not rejoice over the people of Judah in the day of their destruction; do not boastfully mock in the day of distress.
Obadiah 13–14 CSB
13 Do not enter my people’s city gate in the day of their disaster. Yes, you—do not gloat over their misery in the day of their disaster, and do not appropriate their possessions in the day of their disaster. 14 Do not stand at the crossroads to cut off their fugitives, and do not hand over their survivors in the day of distress.
Obadiah 15–16 CSB
15 For the day of the Lord is near, against all the nations. As you have done, it will be done to you; what you deserve will return on your own head. 16 As you have drunk on my holy mountain, so all the nations will drink continually. They will drink and gulp down and be as though they had never been.
Obadiah 17 CSB
17 But there will be a deliverance on Mount Zion, and it will be holy; the house of Jacob will dispossess those who dispossessed them.
Obadiah 18 CSB
18 Then the house of Jacob will be a blazing fire, and the house of Joseph, a burning flame, but the house of Esau will be stubble; Jacob will set them on fire and consume Edom. Therefore no survivor will remain of the house of Esau, for the Lord has spoken.
Obadiah 19 CSB
19 People from the Negev will possess the hill country of Esau; those from the Judean foothills will possess the land of the Philistines. They will possess the territories of Ephraim and Samaria, while Benjamin will possess Gilead.
Obadiah 20–21 CSB
20 The exiles of the Israelites who are in Halah and who are among the Canaanites as far as Zarephath as well as the exiles of Jerusalem who are in Sepharad will possess the cities of the Negev. 21 Saviors will ascend Mount Zion to rule over the hill country of Esau, and the kingdom will be the Lord’s.

Deceived By Pride

Obadiah 1–2 CSB
1 The vision of Obadiah. This is what the Lord God has said about Edom: We have heard a message from the Lord; an envoy has been sent among the nations: “Rise up, and let’s go to war against her.” 2 Look, I will make you insignificant among the nations; you will be deeply despised.
Obadiah 3–4 CSB
3 Your arrogant heart has deceived you, you who live in clefts of the rock in your home on the heights, who say to yourself, “Who can bring me down to the ground?” 4 Though you seem to soar like an eagle and make your nest among the stars, even from there I will bring you down. This is the Lord’s declaration.
Obadiah 5–6 CSB
5 If thieves came to you, if marauders by night— how ravaged you would be!— wouldn’t they steal only what they wanted? If grape harvesters came to you, wouldn’t they leave a few grapes? 6 How Esau will be pillaged, his hidden treasures searched out!
Obadiah 7–8 CSB
7 Everyone who has a treaty with you will drive you to the border; everyone at peace with you will deceive and conquer you. Those who eat your bread will set a trap for you. He will be unaware of it. 8 In that day— this is the Lord’s declaration— will I not eliminate the wise ones of Edom and those who understand from the hill country of Esau?
Obadiah 9 CSB
9 Teman, your warriors will be terrified so that everyone from the hill country of Esau will be destroyed by slaughter.
Obadiah received a message that came directly from the Lord concerning Edom. Using the name Lord (Adonai) GOD (Yahweh) Obadiah is connecting the sovereignty of the Lord over all nations to His covenant name with Israel. We have heard a message from the LORD - an envoy (diplomat or messenger) has been sent among the nations. This is what that envoy proclaimed “Rise up and let’s go to war against her.”
The LORD sent a message or report concerning Edom to the nations calling for them to act and come together to unite and war against Edom. The Lord said to Edom - I will make you insignificant among the nations you will be deeply despised. You will be nothing among the other nations and deeply despised.
God then tells Edom that their arrogant (presumptuous or prideful) heart has deceived them. Their heart thought they were better than they were and more secure. They thought because of their location they were safe and secure. They live in the clefts of rock and their home is in the mountains. Their hearts said who could bring us down - no one can touch us.
Proverbs 6:16–19 CSB
16 The Lord hates six things; in fact, seven are detestable to him: 17 arrogant eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, 18 a heart that plots wicked schemes, feet eager to run to evil, 19 a lying witness who gives false testimony, and one who stirs up trouble among brothers.
God then answers their prideful rhetorical question - you think you soar like an eagle and are safe with your nest (your home) among the stars (with how high up) - but your arrogant heart deceives you. Even from their I will bring you down - this is the Lord’s declaration.
Isaiah 14:12–13 CSB
12 Shining morning star, how you have fallen from the heavens! You destroyer of nations, you have been cut down to the ground. 13 You said to yourself, “I will ascend to the heavens; I will set up my throne above the stars of God. I will sit on the mount of the gods’ assembly, in the remotest parts of the North.
Isaiah 14:14–15 CSB
14 I will ascend above the highest clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.” 15 But you will be brought down to Sheol into the deepest regions of the Pit.
God is bringing judgment against Edom because of their pride. They are filled with it and it has deceived them and even emboldened them to act and behave as though they are secure. It is precisely Edom’s pride that became their undoing as they thought no one could conquer them. A prideful heart forgets or worse ignores the LORD God.
Obadiah now fills in the details concerning Edom’s fall. Edom would be utterly ravaged - even thieves and marauders would only take what they wanted, but Edom would have everything taken. Further depicted by the example of grape harvesters who usually leave some grapes behind, but Esau will be utterly pillaged and have his treasure searched out. This would not be accounted to anything else but the judgment of God bringing total and complete destruction.
Edom’s pride also sat in the alliances and treaties they had. The Lord God declares that those alliances would provide no protection or security but again precisely the source of pride becomes their undoing. These nations would push them out of the land, those at peace would deceive and conquer them. Those who eat your bread will set a trap. What calamity not even from a known enemy, but an ambush from a trusted friend or ally.
The Lord declares in that day He will eliminate the wise ones, those with understanding as well as terrify the warriors. There would be no resuce from wise men, leaders or even from their warriors. Edom’s arrogance would be brought down by their complete humiliation. Security, wealth, wisdom, leadership and soldier would all fall at the hand of God.
Pride only gives false hope that one could stand in their own strength against God. Everyone who stands opposed to God in pride will be brought down low.
Isaiah 2:17 CSB
17 The pride of mankind will be brought low, and human loftiness will be humbled; the Lord alone will be exalted on that day.

Forms of Pride

Obadiah 10–11 CSB
10 You will be covered with shame and destroyed forever because of violence done to your brother Jacob. 11 On the day you stood aloof, on the day strangers captured his wealth, while foreigners entered his city gate and cast lots for Jerusalem, you were just like one of them.
Obadiah 12–13 CSB
12 Do not gloat over your brother in the day of his calamity; do not rejoice over the people of Judah in the day of their destruction; do not boastfully mock in the day of distress. 13 Do not enter my people’s city gate in the day of their disaster. Yes, you—do not gloat over their misery in the day of their disaster, and do not appropriate their possessions in the day of their disaster.
Obadiah 14 CSB
14 Do not stand at the crossroads to cut off their fugitives, and do not hand over their survivors in the day of distress.
God prophesied that Edom would be covered with shame and destroyed forever. The shame to cover their pride and the destruction as judgment and fulfillment of His promise with Israel. The sins of Edom were particularly awful in violence towards their brother. The fact that Edom commited these sins is bad enough but to have commited them against their own family made it all the worse. Sins become worse depending upon who they are commited against. It is sin to mistreat someone, it is worse to mistreat brother or sister in Christ badly. It is sin to speak harsh to anyone it is worse to do it to your spouse. Edom had many sins they commited against Israel.
Proverbs 17:17 CSB
17 A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a difficult time.
The day in which Israel was attacked Edom stood aloof and indifferent. Edom sinned in doing nothing. They did nothing to help at all. Doing nothing can be a great sin. While Israel was attacked and Jerusalem ransacked and foreigners invaded Edom did nothing. In doing nothing to stop it however the Lord declares they were just like one of them who invaded - they were just as guilty.
Numbers 32:23 CSB
23 But if you don’t do this, you will certainly sin against the Lord; be sure your sin will catch up with you.
The sin that will find you out specifically is the sin of doing nothing.
Worse than doing nothing Edom then did something; they gloated at the misfortune of Israel and the people of Judah in the day of their destruction. They boastfully mocked
Proverbs 24:17–18 CSB
17 Don’t gloat when your enemy falls, and don’t let your heart rejoice when he stumbles, 18 or the Lord will see, be displeased, and turn his wrath away from him.
God didnt spare Israel but He did send judgment to Edom.
Edom’s sin started with indifference and doing nothing and progressed to gloating over Judah’s distress. Edom then progressed in their pride and partook in the misfortune of Judah and took advantage of it. They joined in attacking the vulnerable - they exploited and took advantage. Edom cut off those fleeing and handed over the survivors.
When calamity fell, Edom took advantage of it. The Edomites moved in on a fallen people, a captured people, took advantage of the fact that these were fugitives, and used their trouble and their misery to their own advantage. They delivered up the survivors in the day of Israel's distress. They took unfair advantage. God hates it when we utilize another's weakness or bad luck to our advantage.
Have you ever heard anyone say, "Well, I had a contractor bid on some work I would like him to do, and the fellow made a mistake and he has underbid this. But I am going to hold him to It. After all, I've got the contract. He signed it and I am going to hold him to it"? That is taking advantage of another's mistake. We find this spirit coming up so easily when something like that happens. We say, "Oh, that is your hard luck. Finders keepers, losers weepers." We try to move in and take advantage of another's distress.
Sin always progresses pride is no different just more deceptive no man starts of their worst.

The Day of the LORD

Obadiah 15–16 CSB
15 For the day of the Lord is near, against all the nations. As you have done, it will be done to you; what you deserve will return on your own head. 16 As you have drunk on my holy mountain, so all the nations will drink continually. They will drink and gulp down and be as though they had never been.
The day of the Lord is near (both in time but also in terms of certainty) and against all the nations. The day of the Lord can refer to anytime God intervenes in judgment entering in world affairs. Most frequently it refers to a) God’s judgments in the Great Tribulation and at the return of Jesus Christ in glory or b) God’s establishing of the Millennium. In other words the Lord’s “day” is when He will bring all things under His rule. The day of the Lord is a time of retribution and restoration.
Edom’s humiliation is an example and foreshadow of what God will to all nations who similarly mistreat Israel. God made a promise to Abraham in Genesis and this promise remains in effect and has been enforced by God.
Genesis 12:3 CSB
3 I will bless those who bless you, I will curse anyone who treats you with contempt, and all the peoples on earth will be blessed through you.
The Day of the Lord is the judgment of God against all nations - as you have done so it will be done to you and what you deserve will return on your own head.
Ezekiel 35:11 CSB
11 therefore, as I live—this is the declaration of the Lord God—I will treat you according to the anger and jealousy you showed in your hatred of them. I will make myself known among them when I judge you.
Matthew 7:1–2 CSB
1 “Do not judge, so that you won’t be judged. 2 For you will be judged by the same standard with which you judge others, and you will be measured by the same measure you use.
Mark 4:24 CSB
24 And he said to them, “Pay attention to what you hear. By the measure you use, it will be measured to you—and more will be added to you.
Galatians 6:7 CSB
7 Don’t be deceived: God is not mocked. For whatever a person sows he will also reap,
There will be judgment but also the promise of holy deliverance on Mount Zion. Notice that while God is pronouncing judgment on Edom Israel’s hardship is not alleviated. They are suffering - but God promises a future restoration for Israel as a nation.
Mount Zion the scene of Israel’s destruction is the place of deliverance and what once was desecrated is again made holy.
Edom will be utterly destroyed - today there is no Edom or Edomites
Not only will the nation of Israel return and possession of Jerusalem but 19 - 21 speaks of the expansion of the land under the rule of the Lord. Jesus will reign!

Conclusion

Obadiah though short present us a powerful message. It is a caution for those who would be filled in pride and rebel against God and His people.
We must be careful with pride - it is deceptive, it is progressive and it will be punished by God. The cure for pride is humility - humble yourself before the Lord or the Lord will humble you. God hates pride and will judge it.
God will judge sin - in all nations - no one is getting away with anything. Nothing will go unpunished. God is not absent or unconcerned - God sees and God cares - God is not mocked! - but this message is also proof that God desires to warn people. Man cannot say they were not warned.
Ultimately there is hope - that hope is int he one who in the end Rules. Jesus Christ will return and when He does it will be to rule and reign.
Verses 18 is so encouraging “For the Lord has spoken”
It will happen… Edom soon after this began to see exactly what God warned of
By 6 B.C. Edom had ceased to exist.
God has said He will return… His word is True As with Edom… God will deal with sin in the end as well. God judges all sin - all have sinned and all would be condemned BUT God offers Grace and has always offered Grace - He provided one who paid for sin if we believe in His name for salvation!
One who responds in obedience to the grace of God has everything to gain, but a person who spurns His grace in pride has everything to lose. - Bible Knowledge Commentary
The ONE who paid for our sin will one day return to crush sin once for all!!!

“For the Lord has spoken!!!”

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