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And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. John 8:32

The Written Prophecy of Obadiah

By H. A. (Buster) Dobbs
I.  Introduction.
    A.  The man.
        1.  We know nothing about Obadiah.
        2.  His name means "Worshipper of Jehovah."
        3.  Persons of the same name are mentioned in scripture.  
            a.  1 Kings 18:3; 1 Chron. 3:21; 7:3; 8:38; 9:16,44; 12:9; 
                27:19; 34:12; 2 Chron. 17:7; 34:12; Ezra 8:9; Neh. 10:5. 
            b.  None of these, however, is the Obadiah who wrote the 
                book of prophecy that bears his name.
        4.  The prophecy shows that Obadiah was of the kingdom of 
            Judah.
    B.  The background.  
        1.  Obadiah is a prophecy of the coming destruction of Edom.
        2.  Edom was founded by Esau (a variation of "Edom", which 
            means "Red" and is derived from "Adam"). Esau was the son 
            of Isaac and a brother to Jacob/Israel.
        3.  There was a long history of antagonism between the 
            Israelites and the Edomites.
            a.  Edom refused to allow Israel to pass through their land on 
                their way to Canaan.
            b.  The refusal led to wars with Saul (1 Sam. 14:27) and with 
                David, who killed all their males (2 Sam. 8:13-14; 1 Kings 
                11:15).
            c.  Hadad of Edom (Idumea) was an enemy of Solomon 
                (1 Kings 11:14-22).
            d.  Edom joined with Moab and Ammon to invade Judah 
                during the time of Jehoshaphat (2 Chron. 20:22).
            e.  In cooperation with the Philistines Edom invaded Judah 
                during the reign of Jehoram. They robbed the king's palace 
                and killed his sons (2 Chron. 21:8,17).
            f.  Amaziah of Judah led an army against Petra, the principal 
                city of Edom, and killed 20,000 Edomites (2 Chron. 
                20:22).
            g.  Herod the Great was an Idumean and at the birth of Jesus 
                ruled Judah by Roman authority.
        4.  The hatred of these two nations (Judah and Edom) for each 
            other was great.
        5.  Obadiah foretells the utter destruction of Edom, apparently 
            because they joined the Babylonians in their invasion of 
            Jerusalem.
II.  The Book.
     A.  Reasons for the destruction of Edom (1:1-16).
         1.  Announcement of Edom's destruction (1:1-2).
             a.  The word "vision" can denote "divine communication."
             b.  Heathen nations will rise against Edom.
             c.  Edom is despised and made small (will be made small).
         2.  Edom strategic location (1:3).
             a.  Petra of Edom was located in a valley surrounded by 
                 mountains.
             b.  Access was through narrow gorges and restricted passes 
                 which were easy to defend.
             c.  Edom considered herself to be secure.
             d.  She was high up on the mountain like an eagle's nest.
         3.  Her rocky fortress will fall (1:4).
         4.  If invaded by robbers or grapegatherers, something would be 
             left, but Edom is to be scraped clean and even her hidden 
             treasures taken (1:5-6).
         5.  Her allies will not save her, but will betray her  (1:7).
         6.  Her wisdom will not prevent his destruction (1:8-9).
         7.  The cause of Edom's destruction (1:10-14).
         8.  The prophecy of Edom's destruction repeated (1:15-16).
     B.  The restoration of Israel (1:17-21).
         1.  Jacob shall return and possess the possessions of Edom 
             (1:17-20).
         2.  A summation of the prophecy -- mount Zion to judge the 
             mount of Esau, and the kingdom shall be the Lord's (1:21). 
             Truth will prevail.   

H. A. "Buster" Dobbs, email: [email protected]
P. O. Box 690192
Houston, Texas 77269-0192
(281) 469-3540

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