Edom’s Pride And Punishment

A preacher found a shoe box in a closet. He opened it and found strange contents. Inside was an egg carton with 5 eggs. Next to the eggs was a stack of bills that totaled over 10,000 dollars. As soon as his wife walked thru the door he stopped her to ask if she knew anything abou … More


This period of Old Testament history comes from a time when war was simply a fact of life.  Here we find the nations waging war against Edom (vv. 1-4). The theme of the book is clearly established in the first four verses when the Lord says “I will bring you down.” The implication is that the destruction of Edom will be worse than the devastation caused by thieves (v.5).

From the announcement of doom upon Edom the emphasis turns to a spelling out of the wrongs which have made such a doom inevitable (vv. 6-7). Judgment was given on the basis and conviction that Edom had done specific wrong acts against the will of the Lord. Edom prided herself in her great wealth (obtained by trading and by iron and copper mining) and in her position geographically. She trusted in the natural protection provided by the clefts of the rock. Her pride proved to be her undoing, for it deceived her into thinking that no one could conquer her (vv 8-9). Though from mans point of view Edom was almost impregnable she was not inaccessible to God.

The Lord condemns Edom’s cruelty (vv. 10-14). Those make themselves poor, who think to make themselves rich by the ruin of the people of God; and those deceive themselves, who call all that their own on which they can lay their hands in a day of calamity. Though judgment begins at the house of God, it shall not end there.


I need to talk with my family about the sin of pride and give some examples of what it will cause us to do and what it will cause us not to do.

Obadiah 1:1-14 (English Standard Version)

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 her for battle!" Behold, I will make you small among the nations; you shall be utterly despised. The pride of your heart has deceived you, you who live in the clefts of the rock, in your lofty dwelling, who 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, declares the LORD. If thieves came to you, if plunderers came by night-- how you have been destroyed!-- would they not steal only enough for themselves? If grape gatherers came to you, would they not leave gleanings? How Esau has been pillaged, his treasures sought out! All your allies have driven you to your border; those at peace with you have deceived you; they have prevailed against you; those who eat your bread have set a trap beneath you-- you have no understanding. Will I not on that day, declares the LORD, destroy the wise men out of Edom, and understanding out of Mount Esau? And your mighty men shall be dismayed, O Teman, so that every man from Mount Esau will be cut off by slaughter. Because of the violence done to your brother Jacob, shame shall cover you, and you shall be cut off forever. On the day that you stood aloof, on the day that strangers carried off his wealth and foreigners entered his gates and cast lots for Jerusalem, you were like one of them. But do not gloat over the day of your brother in the day of his misfortune; do not rejoice over the people of Judah in the day of their ruin; do not boast in the day of distress. Do not enter the gate of my people in the day of their calamity; do not gloat over his disaster in the day of his calamity; do not loot his wealth in the day of his calamity. Do not stand at the crossroads to cut off his fugitives; do not hand over his survivors in the day of distress.

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More Obadiah commentaries

Obadiah 1:1-14
Edom’s Pride And Punishment

Obadiah 1:15-21
Israel’s Final Triumph