Summary: This is a sermon about a nation that forgot about God.
Series: Obadiah [#1]
THE RISE AND FALL OF A NATION
Obadiah wrote this shortest book of the Old Testament probably soon after the armies of Babylon destroyed Jerusalem. While the Babylonians were taking the Israelites into captivity, the people of Edom helped capture those Israelites who were running and turned them over to the Babylonians. After most of the Israelites were in captivity the Edomites took up residency in the Judean villages. This angered the Lord. The Edomites were descendants of Esau which were related to the Israelites. Instead of helping the Babylonians they should have been helping their relatives. Obadiah prophesied that Edom would be repaid for mistreating God’s people and that the house of Jacob would be restored.
Obadiah 1:1 (NLT)
“This is the vision that the Sovereign Lord revealed to Obadiah concerning the land of Edom. We have heard a message from the Lord that an ambassador was sent to the nations to say, "Get ready, everyone! Let’s assemble our armies and attack Edom!"
Edom’s False Sense
God declared war on Edom. In the next verses God told them what He was going to do to them.
Obadiah 1:2-4 (NLT)
 The Lord says, "I will cut you down to size among the nations, Edom; you will be small and despised.  You are proud because you live in a rock fortress and make your home high in the mountains. ’Who can ever reach us way up here?’ you ask boastfully. Don’t fool yourselves!  Though you soar as high as eagles and build your nest among the stars, I will bring you crashing down. I, the Lord, have spoken!
Edom prided herself in her great wealth. Edom’s 3 main areas of economy were trading, looting, and iron and copper mining in the region. Edom also prided herself in her secure geographical position. Yet God said He would cause her to be made small.
Edom’s pride would be the key to her fall. Because of Edom’s geographical location in the mountains of Seir, they were very secure. Edom trusted in the natural protection provided by the clefts of the rocks. Living in caves high above the ground Edom felt totally safe from enemy attacks. Some of the Edomites had settled
in such high caves and other places up in the mountains that it was as if they were soaring like the eagle and nesting among the stars.
Obadiah 1:5-7 (NLT)
 "If thieves came at night and robbed you, they would not take everything. Those who harvest grapes always leave a few for the poor. But your enemies will wipe you out completely!  Every nook and cranny of Edom will be searched and looted. Every treasure will be found and taken.  "All your allies will turn against you. They will help to chase you from your land. They will promise you peace, while plotting your destruction. Your trusted friends will set traps for you, and you won’t even know about it.
Obadiah now filled in details about Edom’s coming judgment. First, he spoke of thieves taking everything they have. Second, he compared their humiliation to field workers gathering grapes who leave a few grapes for the poor to glean.
Edom prided themselves in the alliances they had with neighboring countries; but those allies would become their enemies. They would pursue Edom to their borders and wipe them out.
Another point of irony is that Edom, who was known for its wise men, would be totally ignorant of their allies’ deceptive scheme. History tells us that in the late sixth or early fifth century B.C. the Nabateans went to the Edomites, who took them in for a banquet; and once they were welcomed inside, the Nabateans turned against their ally and killed the guards.
Obadiah 1:8-9 (NLT)
 At that time not a single wise person will be left in the whole land of Edom!" says the Lord. "For on the mountains of Edom I will destroy everyone who has wisdom and understanding.  The mightiest warriors of Teman will be terrified, and everyone on the mountains of Edom will be cut down in the slaughter.
God said He would knock Edom out of their national standing, He would bring them down from their pride, and He would destroy them. Now He said He would destroy the wise men of Edom and their men of understanding. Their wise leaders would not be able to rescue them.
Obadiah 1:10-12 (NLT)
 "And why? Because of the violence you did to your close relatives in Israel. Now you will be destroyed completely and filled with shame forever.  For you deserted your relatives in Israel during their time of greatest need. You stood aloof, refusing to lift a finger to help when foreign invaders carried off their wealth and cast lots to divide up Jerusalem. You acted as though you were one of Israel’s enemies.  "You shouldn’t have done this! You shouldn’t have gloated when they exiled your relatives to distant lands. You shouldn’t have rejoiced because they were suffering such misfortune. You shouldn’t have crowed over them as they suffered these disasters.  You shouldn’t have plundered the land of Israel when they were suffering such calamity. You shouldn’t have gloated over the destruction of your relatives, looting their homes and making yourselves rich at their expense.  You shouldn’t have stood at the crossroads, killing those who tried to escape. You shouldn’t have captured the survivors, handing them over to their enemies in that terrible time of trouble.