OVERLOOKED OBADIAH

Let’s spend some time in the Old Testament book of Obadiah.  Why?  Seems like he’s overlooked.  After all, only one chapter, comprising twenty-one verses.  Hardly a book.  Barely a short story.

Hey, it’s in the Word of God.  No frivolous anything found between its pages.  So, let’s look over overlooked Obadiah!

Most of Obadiah’s prophecy has to do with Edom, a long-standing enemy of ancient Israel.  The ending gives great hope to God’s people.  Restoration is on the way for a beaten-down nation–‘And the kingdom will be the Lord’s’ (v.21).

What grabs my attention in particular can be found in verses 8-14.  Made many notes in my Bible.  As if the Holy Spirit says,  ‘Slow down.  This is for you.  Pay attention.’

A day is coming when the Lord will judge Edom.  Won’t be fun.  Can’t sleep through it or talk their way out of it.  What goes around is coming around.

Same for our sinful world.  For those who mock Jesus, and disdain His Word, the Bible.  Seems like that’s most everybody.  Our reaction?  A smirk for those getting exactly what they deserve?  Neener, neener, neener!

Obadiah mentions eight negatives we’re to shun.  Boil them down and you get that big mouthful German word ‘schadenfreude’–joy at other’s misfortune.  Not a good thing but one we can all identify with.  Right?  Be honest now.  No, not you, of course!

Verses 11-14 display attitudes we should get rid of.  Unfortunately, we can’t.  So, ask for the Holy Spirit’s help.  He wants kindness to come to the surface.  Not a bunch of I-told-you-so’s.  Unfortunately, no gloating or rubbing it in either.  Too bad, so sad.

Rather, praying for those who hate us and our God.  What?  Yes!  Exactly what Jesus tells us to do (Matt. 5:44).  Even to love them?  Fat chance.  Don’t hold your breath.  On my own, forget it.  Again, ask the Holy Spirit to help us do what we can’t or won’t.  Plus with Jesus’ help, all things are possible (Matt. 19:36, Phil. 4:13).

Obadiah helps me reconsider my attitudes, putting them on God’s scale, checking for balance.  Tilt!  And then to reform them through the Holy Spirit’s and Jesus’ help.  Am I the only needy one?

Lord, we pray for ALL the lost to be found through Jesus, our Lord.  Amen.