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Obadiah Good News Translation (GNT)

This is the prophecy of Obadiah—what the Sovereign Lord said about the nation of Edom.

The Lord Will Punish Edom

The Lord has sent his messenger to the nations,
    and we have heard his message:
    “Get ready! Let us go to war against Edom!”
The Lord says to Edom,
    “I will make you weak;
    everyone will despise you.
Your pride has deceived you.
Your capital is a fortress of solid rock;
    your home is high in the mountains,
and so you say to yourself,
    ‘Who can ever pull me down?’
Even though you make your home
    as high as an eagle's nest,
    so that it seems to be among the stars,
yet I will pull you down.

“When thieves come at night,
    they take only what they want.
When people gather grapes,
    they always leave a few.
But your enemies have wiped you out completely.
Descendants of Esau, your treasures have been looted.
Your allies have deceived you;
    they have driven you from your country.
People who were at peace with you have now conquered you.
    Those friends who ate with you have laid a trap for you;
    they say of you, ‘Where is all that cleverness he had?’

“On the day I punish Edom,
    I will destroy their clever men
    and wipe out all their wisdom.
The fighting men of Teman will be terrified,
    and every soldier in Edom will be killed.

Reasons for Edom's Punishment

10 “Because you robbed and killed
    your relatives,[a] the descendants of Jacob,
    you will be destroyed and dishonored forever.
11 You stood aside on that day
    when enemies broke down their gates.
You were as bad as those strangers
    who carried off Jerusalem's wealth
    and divided it among themselves.
12 You should not have gloated
    over the misfortune of your relatives in Judah.
You should not have been glad
    on the day of their ruin.
You should not have laughed at them
    in their distress.
13 You should not have entered the city of my people
    to gloat over their suffering
    and to seize their riches
    on the day of their disaster.
14 You should not have stood at the crossroads
    to catch those trying to escape.
You should not have handed them over to the enemy
    on the day of their distress.

God Will Judge the Nations

15 “The day is near when I, the Lord,
    will judge all nations.
Edom, what you have done
    will be done to you.
    You will get back what you have given.
16 My people have drunk a bitter cup of punishment
    on my sacred hill.[b]
But all the surrounding nations will drink
    a still more bitter cup of punishment;
    they will drink it all and vanish away.

The Victory of Israel

17 “But on Mount Zion some will escape,
    and it will be a sacred place.
The people of Jacob will possess
    the land that is theirs by right.
18 The people of Jacob and of Joseph will be like fire;
    they will destroy the people of Esau
    as fire burns stubble.
    No descendant of Esau will survive.
I, the Lord, have spoken.

19 “People from southern Judah will occupy Edom;
    those from the western foothills will capture Philistia.
Israelites will possess the territory of Ephraim and Samaria;
    the people of Benjamin will take Gilead.
20 The army of exiles from northern Israel
    will return and conquer Phoenicia as far north as Zarephath.
The exiles from Jerusalem who are in Sardis
    will capture the towns of southern Judah.
21 The victorious men of Jerusalem
    will attack Edom and rule over it.
And the Lord himself will be king.”


  1. Obadiah 1:10 The Israelites were descended from Jacob, who was the brother of Esau, the ancestor of the Edomites.
  2. Obadiah 1:16 Mount Zion (see Zion in Word List).
Good News Translation (GNT)

Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

Obadiah New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

Proud Edom Will Be Brought Low

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 it for battle!”
I will surely make you least among the nations;
    you shall be utterly despised.
Your proud heart has deceived you,
    you that live in the clefts of the rock,[a]
    whose dwelling is in the heights.
You say in your heart,
    “Who will bring me down to the ground?”
Though you soar aloft like the eagle,
    though your nest is set among the stars,
    from there I will bring you down,
says the Lord.

Pillage and Slaughter Will Repay Edom’s Cruelty

If thieves came to you,
    if plunderers by night
    —how you have been destroyed!—
    would they not steal only what they wanted?
If grape-gatherers came to you,
    would they not leave gleanings?
How Esau has been pillaged,
    his treasures searched out!
All your allies have deceived you,
    they have driven you to the border;
your confederates have prevailed against you;
    those who ate[b] your bread have set a trap for you—
    there is no understanding of it.
On that day, says the Lord,
    I will destroy the wise out of Edom,
    and understanding out of Mount Esau.
Your warriors shall be shattered, O Teman,
    so that everyone from Mount Esau will be cut off.

Edom Mistreated His Brother

10 For the slaughter and violence done to your brother Jacob,
    shame shall cover you,
    and you shall be cut off forever.
11 On the day that you stood aside,
    on the day that strangers carried off his wealth,
and foreigners entered his gates
    and cast lots for Jerusalem,
    you too were like one of them.
12 But you should not have gloated[c] over[d] your brother
    on the day of his misfortune;
you should not have rejoiced over the people of Judah
    on the day of their ruin;
you should not have boasted
    on the day of distress.
13 You should not have entered the gate of my people
    on the day of their calamity;
you should not have joined in the gloating over Judah’s[e] disaster
    on the day of his calamity;
you should not have looted his goods
    on the day of his calamity.
14 You should not have stood at the crossings
    to cut off his fugitives;
you should not have handed over his survivors
    on the day of distress.

15 For the day of the Lord is near against 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,
    all the nations around you shall drink;
they shall drink and gulp down,[f]
    and shall be as though they had never been.

Israel’s Final Triumph

17 But on Mount Zion there shall be those that escape,
    and it shall be holy;
and the house of Jacob shall take possession of those who dispossessed them.
18 The house of Jacob shall be a fire,
    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 of the house of Esau;
for the Lord has spoken.
19 Those of the Negeb shall possess Mount Esau,
    and those of the Shephelah 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 the Israelites who are in Halah[g]
    shall possess[h] Phoenicia as far as Zarephath;
and the exiles of Jerusalem who are in Sepharad
    shall possess the towns of the Negeb.
21 Those who have been saved[i] shall go up to Mount Zion
    to rule Mount Esau;
    and the kingdom shall be the Lord’s.


  1. Obadiah 1:3 Or clefts of Sela
  2. Obadiah 1:7 Cn: Heb lacks those who ate
  3. Obadiah 1:12 Heb But do not gloat (and similarly through verse 14)
  4. Obadiah 1:12 Heb on the day of
  5. Obadiah 1:13 Heb his
  6. Obadiah 1:16 Meaning of Heb uncertain
  7. Obadiah 1:20 Cn: Heb in this army
  8. Obadiah 1:20 Cn: Meaning of Heb uncertain
  9. Obadiah 1:21 Or Saviors
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Obadiah Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

This is the vision of ‘Ovadyah. Here is what Adonai Elohim says about Edom. As a messenger was being sent among the nations saying, “Come on, let’s attack her,” we heard a message from Adonai:

“I am making you the least of all nations,
you will be beneath contempt.
Your proud heart has deceived you,
you whose homes are caves in the cliffs,
who live on the heights and say to yourselves,
‘Who can bring me down to the ground?’
If you make your nest as high as an eagle’s,
even if you place it among the stars,
I will bring you down from there.” says Adonai.

If thieves were to come to you,
or if robbers by night
(Oh, how destroyed you are!),
wouldn’t they stop when they’d stolen enough?
If grape-pickers came to you,
Wouldn’t they leave some grapes for gleaning?
But see how ‘Esav has been looted,
their secret treasures searched out!
Your allies went with you only to the border,
those at peace with you deceived and defeated you,
those who ate your food set a trap for you,
and you couldn’t discern it.
“When that Day comes,” says Adonai,
“won’t I destroy all the wise men of Edom
and leave no discernment on Mount ‘Esav?
Your warriors, Teman, will be so distraught
that everyone on Mount ‘Esav will be slaughtered.
10 For the violence done to your kinsman Ya‘akov,
shame will cover you;
and you will be forever cut off.
11 On that day you stood aside,
while strangers carried off his treasure,
and foreigners entered his gates
to cast lots for Yerushalayim —
you were no different from them.
12 You shouldn’t have gloated over your kinsman
on their day of disaster
or rejoiced over the people of Y’hudah
on their day of destruction.
You shouldn’t have spoken arrogantly
on a day of trouble
13 or entered the gate of my people
on their day of calamity —
no, you shouldn’t have gloated over their suffering
on their day of calamity
or laid hands on their treasure
on their day of calamity.
14 You shouldn’t have stood at the crossroads
to cut down their fugitives
or handed over their survivors
on a day of trouble.”

15 For the Day of Adonai is near for all nations;
as you did, it will be done to you;
your dealings will come back on your own head.
16 For just as you have drunk on my holy mountain,
so will all the nations drink in turn;
yes, they will drink and gulp it down
and be as if they had never existed.

17 But on Mount Tziyon there will be
a holy remnant who will escape,
and the house of Ya‘akov will repossess
their rightful inheritance.
18 The house of Ya‘akov will be a fire
and the house of Yosef a flame,
setting aflame and consuming
the stubble which is the house of ‘Esav.
None of the house of ‘Esav will remain,
for Adonai has spoken.
19 Those in the Negev will repossess
the mountain of ‘Esav,
and those in the Sh’felah
the land of the P’lishtim;
they will repossess the field of Efrayim
and the field of Shomron,
and Binyamin will occupy Gil‘ad.
20 Those from this army of the people of Isra’el
exiled among the Kena‘anim as far away as Tzarfat,
and the exiles from Yerushalayim in S’farad,
will repossess the cities in the Negev.
21 Then the victorious will ascend Mount Tziyon
to rule over Mount ‘Esav,
but the kingship will belong to Adonai.

Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

Copyright © 1998 by David H. Stern. All rights reserved.

Obadiah The Message (MSG)

Your World Will Collapse

Obadiah’s Message to Edom
    from God, the Master.
We got the news straight from God
    by a special messenger sent out to the godless nations:

“On your feet, prepare for battle;
    get ready to make war on Edom!

2-4 “Listen to this, Edom:
    I’m turning you to a no-account,
    the runt of the godless nations, despised.
You thought you were so great,
    perched high among the rocks, king of the mountain,
Thinking to yourself,
    ‘Nobody can get to me! Nobody can touch me!’
Think again. Even if, like an eagle,
    you hang out on a high cliff-face,
Even if you build your nest in the stars,
    I’ll bring you down to earth.”
        God’s sure Word.

5-14 “If thieves crept up on you,
    they’d rob you blind—isn’t that so?
If they mugged you on the streets at night,
    they’d pick you clean—isn’t that so?
Oh, they’ll take Esau apart, piece by piece,
    empty his purse and pockets.
All your old partners will drive you to the edge.
    Your old friends will lie to your face.
Your old drinking buddies will stab you in the back.
    Your world will collapse. You won’t know what hit you.
So don’t be surprised”—it’s God’s sure Word!—
    “when I wipe out all sages from Edom
    and rid the Esau mountains of its famous wise men.
Your great heroes will desert you, Teman.
    There’ll be nobody left in Esau’s mountains.
Because of the murderous history compiled
    against your brother Jacob,
You will be looked down on by everyone.
    You’ll lose your place in history.
On that day you stood there and didn’t do anything.
    Strangers took your brother’s army into exile.
Godless foreigners invaded and pillaged Jerusalem.
    You stood there and watched.
    You were as bad as they were.
You shouldn’t have gloated over your brother
    when he was down-and-out.
You shouldn’t have laughed and joked at Judah’s sons
    when they were facedown in the mud.
You shouldn’t have talked so big
    when everything was so bad.
You shouldn’t have taken advantage of my people
    when their lives had fallen apart.
You of all people should not have been amused
    by their troubles, their wrecked nation.
You shouldn’t have taken the shirt off their back
    when they were knocked flat, defenseless.
And you shouldn’t have stood waiting at the outskirts
    and cut off refugees,
And traitorously turned in helpless survivors
    who had lost everything.

15-18 God’s Judgment Day is near
    for all the godless nations.
As you have done, it will be done to you.
    What you did will boomerang back
    and hit your own head.
Just as you partied on my holy mountain,
    all the godless nations will drink God’s wrath.
They’ll drink and drink and drink—
    they’ll drink themselves to death.
But not so on Mount Zion—there’s respite there!
    a safe and holy place!
The family of Jacob will take back their possessions
    from those who took them from them.
That’s when the family of Jacob will catch fire,
    the family of Joseph become fierce flame,
    while the family of Esau will be straw.
Esau will go up in flames,
    nothing left of Esau but a pile of ashes.”
        God said it, and it is so.

19-21 People from the south will take over the Esau mountains;
    people from the foothills will overrun the Philistines.
They’ll take the farms of Ephraim and Samaria,
    and Benjamin will take Gilead.
Earlier, Israelite exiles will come back
    and take Canaanite land to the north at Zarephath.
Jerusalem exiles from the far northwest in Sepharad
    will come back and take the cities in the south.
The remnant of the saved in Mount Zion
    will go into the mountains of Esau
And rule justly and fairly,
    a rule that honors God’s kingdom.

The Message (MSG)

Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson

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