Obadiah 1:1-15 open_in_new
Obadiah 1:1-15 b. The Deserved Downfall of Edom. The prophet declares that interpretation of current events which Yahweh has revealed to him. Other nations are combining against Edom (Obadiah 1:1) and Yahweh will make their combination successful (Obadiah 1:2; the perfect tenses are prophetic). Edom has been confident in the inaccessibility of his mountainous land (Obadiah 1:3; see Intro. and read with VSS making high his habitation), but vainly does he build (his nest) on high (for the eagle, see on Jeremiah 4:13). This is no passing raid, for the work of the foe will be thorough (insert only after steal in Obadiah 1:5, to bring out the contrast; for the reference to the gleaning, perhaps suggested by the number of Edomite vineyards, cf. Deuteronomy 24:21). The secret treasures stored in mountain caves will be stolen (Obadiah 1:6, which may be a gloss from Jeremiah 49:10; note change of person). The trusted allies (see Intro.) will drive the Edomites from their land (Obadiah 1:7 mg.; prophetic perfect). The last two clauses of Obadiah 1:7 yield no sense here, the Heb. of the former being thy bread they put a net; Obadiah 1:8 f. seems to have been added, with the appendix, to unite the earlier prophecy with the idea of the Day of Yahweh prominent in the later (for Teman, see on Jeremiah 49:7, possibly the source of Obadiah 1:8). These Edomite disasters are a penalty for the conduct of the Edomites when Jerusalem was destroyed (Obadiah 1:10, see Intro.). Edom stood aloof (Obadiah 1:11 mg.), nay, even laid hands on Judah's property, and intercepted fugitives (Obadiah 1:12-14). Hence retribution (Obadiah 1:15 b).
Obadiah 1:15-21 open_in_new
Obadiah 1:15 a, Obadiah 1:16-21. The Judgment of the Nations. The Day of Yahweh approaches; Judah has already drunk her cup of suffering (cf. Jeremiah 25:15; Jeremiah 49:12), and now the other nations shall drink destruction. Mount Zion shall be a sanctuary, and the house of Jacob (here for Judah) shall recover what has been lost (Obadiah 1:17). Judah shall be joined by the restored northern kingdom (the house of Joseph), and together they shall utterly destroy the Edomites (Esau, Obadiah 1:18; for the contrast of Jacob and Esau, cf. Malachi 1:2-5). The territories to be recovered in S. and N. are indicated (Obadiah 1:19 f.). Judah in Zion shall be reinforced by the help of the restored Israel (the saviours of Obadiah 1:21) against Esau, and the Messianic kingdom shall be established (Zarephath on coast, between Tyre and Sidon, cf. 1 Kings 17:9); Sepharad, since the Persian period a name for Asia Minor, particularly Phrygia; this host, Obadiah 1:20, may be a corrupt form of Halah (cf. 2 Kings 17:6).
Obadiah 1:19 seems to have been expanded by glosses, and Marti suggests as its original form, And they (i.e. the united Israel and Judah) will take possession of the Negeb and the Shephelah, and the fields of Ephraim and Gilead. In Obadiah 1:20, we should probably read, shall possess the Canaanites, the Heb. being impossible as it stands.