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01-19-2017, 01:27 PM,
OBADIAH Verses 1-3. The vision of Obadiah [servant of Jah]. Thus saith the Lord God concerning Edom [red], We have heard a rumour from Jehovah, and an ambassador is sent among the heathen, Arise ye, and let us rise up against her in battle. Behold, I have made thee small among the heathen: thou art greatly despised. The pride of thine heart hath deceived thee, thou that dwellest in the clefts of the rock, whose habitation is high; that saith in his heart, Who shall bring me down to the ground? [Jeremiah 49:14-16].

Please see Genesis 25:30-34; 36:1; Num. 20:14-21; Jer. 49:7-25; and also the comment on Malachi 1:4. This prophecy of Obadiah is a description of the general course of the confederacy, or church union, whose persistent, course of blaspheming the name of God by their creeds, leads to ultimate disaster, irrevocable and complete. The religious leaders become so proud and overbearing as to offend their adherents until they unite in sending militant persons through the lines of supporters, stirring up the discontented ones to register complaint. The result is waning influence of the leaders who are regarded with increasing contempt as it becomes more and more obvious that they would fain cover up rather than repent of past and present errors in doctrine and practice. The proud in heart are an abomination to Jehovah.

Verses 4-6. Though thou exalt thyself as the eagle, and though thou set thy nest among the stars, thence will I bring thee down, saith Jehovah. If thieves came to thee, if robbers by night (how art thou cut off!), would they not have stolen till they had enough? if the grape gatherers came to thee, would they not leave some grapes? How are the things [treasures] of Esau searched out! how are his hidden things sought up!

And it is the work of- God to tear such kingdoms down and give them over to the rule of the great Messiah for a thousand years. The downfall of that "great city" is worse than being robbed by thieves, for they would leave something; but their opponents leave nothing usable of the great confederacy. Esau represents those religious leaders who give up their birthright spiritual, for. a mess of earthly advantages, position, and influence.

Verses 7-8. All the men of thy confederacy [Isaiah 8:11-13] have brought thee even to the border; the men that were at peace with thee have deceived thee, and prevailed against thee; they that eat thy bread have laid a wound under thee: there is none understanding in him. Shall I not in that day, saith Jehovah, even destroy the wise men out of Edom, and understanding out of the mount of Esau?

All the men of thy confederacy have brought thee to the border of ruin. Supposed to support and protect thee, they have brought contempt on thy name and work of bringing the world to Christ. The house of Edom represents Christendom, and the house of Esau those who had a birthright and sold it for earthly gain, or prosperity. So wisdom departs from both classes in and about the confederacy.

Verses 9-11. And thy mighty men, 0 Teman [south], shall be dismayed, to the end that every one of the mount of Esau may be cut off by slaughter. For thy violence against thy brother Jacob, shame shall cover thee, and thou shalt be cut off for ever. In the day that thou stoodest on the other side, in the day that the strangers carried away captive his forces, and foreigners entered into his gates, and cast lots upon Jerusalem, even thou roast as one of them.

Even those who begin to accept the idea of an earthly Kingdom under Messiah become dismayed and give up the Truth for a new doctrine not contained in the Word. Israel begins to set up a Kingdom which is opposed by these, causing a sharp conflict between them; Israel is treated unfairly, and the Orthodox Jews separate from the Modern Jews to the detriment of both. Abraham is still the father, and he is heir of all the world: all such as these that cause trouble shall be cut off; All, Jew and Gentile, must become children of Abraham.

Verses 12-14. But thou shouldest not have looked on the day of thy brother in the day that he became a stranger; neither shouldest thou have rejoiced over the children of Judah in the day of their destruction; neither shouldest thou have spoken proudly in the day of distress. Thou shouldest not have entered into the gate of my people in the day of their calamity; yea, thou shouldest not have looked on their affliction in the day of their calamity, nor have laid hands on their substance in the day of their calamity; neither shouldest thou have stood in the crossway, to cut off those of his that did escape; neither shouldest thou have delivered up those of his that did remain in the day of distress.

There is to be a sharp conflict between the two classes of Jews: the confederacy embraces the opportunity to oppose Jacob; and where the road crosses between them they are maltreated by the church union.

Verses 15-17. For the day of Jehovah is near upon all the nations; as thou hast done, it shall be done unto thee: thy reward shall return upon thine own head. For as ye have drunk upon my holy mountain, so shall all the nations drink continually, yea, they shall drink, and they shall swallow down, and they shall be as though they had not been. But upon Mount Zion shall be deliverance, and there shall be holiness; and the house of Jacob shall possess their possessions.

The Lord through the prophet describes the events of "the day of the Lord," the approaching time of trouble, in which all the nations shall come into judgment, and be caused to drink of the cup of the Lord's anger (Jer. 25:28, 29). When the nations fall during the coming time of trouble it will mean their utter destruction, as was illustrated in Nebuchadnezzar's image of these nations (Dan. 2:35, 44, 45). The same destruction of the nations is pictured in Daniel's dream respecting the same kingdoms (Dan. 7:1114, 27). But although the nations shall never rise up again, and although only God's kingdom will thereafter be recognized, yet the people who composed the various nations, "all the families of the earth," shall come forth from the grave to be blessed by God's kings and priests—"the holy nation, the peculiar people, the Seed of Abraham." For the day of Jehovah is near upon all Gentiles; and it will be disastrous for the supporters of the confederacy. Its failure is thus forecast, and great will be the fall thereof. The church union will pass away so thoroughly that they will be as though, they had never been. But upon the earthly Zion shall be deliverance for Israel. Jerusalem must become the possession of Israel once more either by purchase or war, for Jacob's Trouble ends there in the overthrow and destruction of the great Gentile army. But the Jews are coming up to their proper place and there shall be holiness in all the house of Jacob; and they shall possess their possessions in order that the salvation of the world may be accomplished by the Messiah, and the New Covenant.

Verse 18. And the house of Jacob shall be a fire, and the house of Joseph a flame, and the house of Esau for stubble, and they shall kindle in them, and devour them; and there shall not be any remaining of the house of Esau; for Jehovah hath spoken it.

The house of Jacob means fleshly Israel; the house of Joseph is spiritual; and between the two, the house of Esau, those who sell their spiritual for an earthly inheritance, will be no more. That is where the Protestants with their many faiths or churches came from. There will be no more of that; for Jehovah hath spoken it.

Verse 19. And they of the south shall possess the mount of Esau: and they of the plain the Philistines; and they shall possess the field of Ephraim, and the fields of Samaria; and Benjamin shall possess Gilead.

The men of Teman, or the South, represent the Ancient Worthies* who shall possess earthly things and have charge of the Highway of Holiness that ends in HUMAN PERFECTION; and Benjamin ("son of my pain," but now "son of my right hand"—Genesis 35:18) will assist in eliminating pain with the true balm of Gilead (formerly a place of rich pastures for the flocks) prescribed by the Great Physician. They of the South are the Ancient Worthies.

Verses 20-21. And the captivity of this host of the children of Israel shall possess that of the Canaanites, even unto Zarephath [refinement]; and the captivity of Jerusalem, which is in Sepharad [separation], shall possess the cities of the south. And saviours shall come up on Mount Zion to judge the mount of Esau; and the kingdom shall be Jehovah's.

Jerusalem shall be the capital of the world; and there shall be no more Canaanites (Zech. 14:21). The Saviours are the Little Flock Class, closely identified with the Messiah; and the Kingdom will finally be Jehovah's. "Glory to God in the Highest." "I came to bear witness to the Truth."

0 clap your hands, all ye people; shout unto God with the voice of triumph! For JEHOVAH MOST HIGH IS A GREAT KING over all the earth! JEHOVAH IS KING FOR EVER AND EVER!" (Psa. 47:1-2; 10:16)

* THE NEW CREATION, pages 128-129 of Chapter III.

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