Obadiah is the least popular book in the bible. That’s probably because its in the Old Testament, it’s small, it’s written in a situation we are unfamiliar with and it’s message seems a bit harsh. All the prophets tell us something of the gospel and Obadiah is no different.
Obadiah is God’s message against the nation of Edom. They, along with many others nations (including God’s people, the Israelites) have rebelled against God and, as a result, are facing God’s judgement. It’s a hard message, but it’s one that sheds light on the good news about who God is and what he has done.
Part 1 - The Untouchables
Part 2 - The Joy of (other people's) pain
Part 3 - Justice
Part 4 - On your own head
For as you have drunk on my holy mountain, so all the nations shall drink continually; they shall drink and swallow, and shall be as though they had never been.
Imagery of drinking in connection with judgement is common in the Old Testament. Over and over again, the bible talks about the cup of God’s wrath which will be poured out in judgement against sin. Sin is deeper than just the sinful acts that we commit and others commit against us. It is the betrayal of a relationship with God. It is adultery. God is not indifferent to sin, sin cannot be in his perfectly holy presence. God’s cup of wrath is the end result of sin. It was coming for the Edomites and it’s coming for us, it will destroy us. Unless the cup was drunk by someone else!
“Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.”