Visions (1) Locusts invading (7:1-3); (2) Consumed by Fire (7:4-6); (3) Plumb line (7:7-9); (4) Ripe fruit (8:1-14); (5) Israel destroyed (9:1-10). God's promise kept (9:11-15). God speaks to Edom (Obad. 1:4,15-18, 20-21).
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? (Obad. 1:3).
Sometimes it is easy to overlook the shorter Books of the Bible. Obadiah, with only one chapter, is the shortest Book in the Old Testament. It is considered a book of one of the minor Prophets. However, just because the book is short and "minor" does not mean it should be discredited.
Many times in the study of the Word of God we find that Books containing long drawn out prophecy take extra time and study to understand. If this is the case, how much could Obadiah say in just one chapter? What great lessons could be passed to us from this prophet in such a short span of time?
The answer might surprise you. In this verse alone, there is a very important lesson to be learned. It is a lesson that is taught many times throughout the Word of God. That lesson is the danger of the emotion of pride.
Apparently Edom had experienced some past successes in dealing with their enemies. But, just as many still do, they failed to recognize that it was their Creator God who enabled and brought about the events and conditions that turned out as successes. Obadiah was letting Edom know that they were wrong to take the credit that belonged only to God. He was warning them of their imminent destruction because of their pride and their evil ways.
Just like with many other vices, pride becomes a sinful emotion when we have it in excess. As was stated, the Word of God has much to say on pride. Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall (Prov. 16:18).
In today's verse, Obadiah is speaking of the pride of the nation of Edom. Their national pride was not the same as patriotism. Their pride had become so excessive that they felt there was nothing in the world that could bring them down. They felt that their wisdom and strength was undefeatable. They gave no credit to God, and there was no fear of Him left within them. We need to always have a reverent fear of the Lord. Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling (Phil. 2:12).
As individuals, we can fall into this same trap. We can become so prideful in our careers, family lives, and even our recreational time that we get to a place where we feel that nothing can stop us, regardless of who or what it is. This includes the Lord. This is not a good position to be in. Most people who get there don't realize it until they are brought back down to earth. Our pride blinds us to the truth of whom we have allowed ourselves to become.
We must control our level of pride. We need to follow the example that was set for us by the Lord Jesus. He taught several lessons on humility, and He practiced it in His day to day life. It pays to remember that pride can be a very dangerous sin.
For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world (1 John 2:16).
Thought for Today:
God always does what He promises to do. He expects us to do the same.
As the Plumbline (Amos 7:7-8). A plumb line is an instrument used in determining an absolutely straight vertical line. Being perfect, Christ alone is qualified to walk in the midst of His people, measuring and exposing good and bad, true and false (Rev. 2 & 3).
Amos 6:8 excellency of Jacob, pride, arrogance (Jacob means all of Israel, including the palaces of Jerusalem and Samaria); 6:11 with breaches, into ruins; with clefts, into fragments; 6:13 horns by our own strength, pride over their accomplishments, military power (Deut. 33:17; 1 Kin. 22:11).
Memory Verse for the Week: Psalms 145:14