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Edom’s Pride and Punishment

The Lord God gave Obadiah
a message[a] about Edom,
    and this is what we heard:
“I, the Lord, have sent
    a messenger
with orders for the nations
    to attack Edom.”

The Lord said to Edom:
I will make you the weakest
    and most despised nation.
You live in a mountain fortress,[b]
    because your pride
makes you feel safe from attack,
    but you are mistaken.
I will still bring you down,
even if you fly higher
    than an eagle
or nest among the stars.
    I, the Lord, have spoken!

If thieves break in at night,
they steal
    only what they want.
And people who harvest grapes
    always leave some unpicked.
But, Edom, you are doomed!
Everything you treasure most
    will be taken from you.
Your allies can’t be trusted.
They will force you out
    of your own country.
Your best friends
will trick and trap you,
    even before you know it.

Edom, when this happens,
I, the Lord,
will destroy
    all your marvelous wisdom.
Warriors from the city of Teman[c]
    will be terrified,
and you descendants of Esau[d]
    will be wiped out.

The Lord Condemns Edom’s Cruelty

10 You were cruel to your relatives,
    the descendants of Jacob.[e]
Now you will be destroyed,
    disgraced forever.
11 You stood there and watched
as foreigners entered Jerusalem
    and took what they wanted.
In fact, you were no better
    than those foreigners.

12 Why did you celebrate
when such a dreadful disaster
    struck your relatives?
Why were you so pleased
when everyone in Judah
    was suffering?
13 They are my people,
    and you were cruel to them.
You went through their towns,
and stealing
    whatever was left.
14 In their time of torment,
    you ambushed refugees
and handed them over
    to their attackers.

The Lord Will Judge the Nations

15 The day is coming
when I, the Lord,
    will judge the nations.
And, Edom, you will pay in full
    for what you have done.

16 I forced the people of Judah[f]
to drink the wine of my anger
    on my sacred mountain.
Soon the neighboring nations
must drink their fill—
    then vanish without a trace.

Victory for Israel

17 The Lord’s people who escape
will go to Mount Zion,
    and it will be holy.
Then Jacob’s descendants
will capture the land of those
    who took their land.
18 Israel[g] will be a fire,
and Edom will be straw
    going up in flames.
The Lord has spoken!

19 The people of Israel
who live in the Southern Desert
    will take the land of Edom.
Those who live in the hills
will capture Philistia,
    Ephraim, and Samaria.
And the tribe of Benjamin
    will conquer Gilead.

20 Those who return from captivity
will control Phoenicia
    as far as Zarephath.[h]
Captives from Jerusalem
    who were taken to Sepharad[i]
will capture the towns
    of the Southern Desert.
21 Those the Lord has saved
will live on Mount Zion
    and rule over Edom.[j]
Then the kingdom will belong
    to the Lord.


  1. 1 message: Or “vision.”
  2. 3 mountain fortress: The Hebrew text has “rocky cliff,” which sounds like “Sela,” the capital of Edom, a fortress city built on a mountain.
  3. 9 Teman: A famous city in Edom.
  4. 9 descendants of Esau: The people of Edom were descendants of Esau, the brother of Jacob (Israel).
  5. 10 descendants of Jacob: Jacob and Esau were brothers (see the note on Esau at verse 9).
  6. 16 I forced. . . Judah: Or “I will force the people of Edom.”
  7. 18 Israel: Hebrew “The descendants of Jacob and of Joseph.”
  8. 20 Those who return. . . Zarephath: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
  9. 20 Sepharad: Possibly the city of Sardis, the capital of Lydia, a country north and west of Media. This would refer to those captives from Judah who had been taken beyond the kingdom of Babylonia.
  10. 21 Those the Lord. . . Edom: Or “Leaders on (from) Mount Zion will save the people and rule over Edom.”

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