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Contents:


  1. Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, and Micah - She Reads Truth - She Reads Truth
  2. Joel, Amos & Obadiah: An Exegetical Commentary
  3. Immersion Bible Studies: Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah
  4. Featured Verse Topics

However, it appears that Edom had violated that relationship somehow perhaps by joining in the destruction of Jerusalem, or at least relishing in the pillaging of it — though this, too, is speculation , and Obadiah was sent to announce God's judgment against them. Yet this book is much more than merely an oracle of judgment. It is a witness to the sovereignty of God. All the nations not just Edom had believed themselves to be independent conquering and looting at will.

Judah, on the other hand, felt abandoned by God and languished in her despair.

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Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, and Micah - She Reads Truth - She Reads Truth

But Obadiah proclaimed that God is Lord over all, and the day would come when those warring nations would be destroyed. Then Judah would be vindicated. The book purports to be a vision, but it is not a vision in the normal sense. It is filled with word pictures, describing future events whereby Edom would be destroyed by various nations.

Their military strongholds, their pride of arrogance would be shattered.

Joel, Amos & Obadiah: An Exegetical Commentary

The prophet sees these events as judgment for Edom's sins against Judah — their participation in a sort of fratricide, if you will. These words are spoken through the eyes of someone who has already experienced God's judgment; there is no gloating but rather a deep respect for God's justice. Even though some of the surrounding nations had been God's instrument of chastisement for Judah, they, in turn, are accountable for their excesses.

The book is centered on two main themes: the first is the destruction of Edom; the second is the justification of Judah.

The book of Obadiah

Like those before him, this prophet also mentions the "Day of the Lord," meaning the day of God's judgment. Although these messages of judgment against a foreign nation are hard for us to hear, in point of fact, they are oracles of hope for Judah. Judah currently destroyed and in exile can look forward to a time when the perpetrators will reap their just rewards and those who have suffered will be exalted and restored. With these resounding words, the book of Obadiah comes to a close. The message to Edom is one of judgment for its excesses against Judah. God demands justice in his dealings with the nations.

For Judah, there is a message of hope.

Immersion Bible Studies: Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah

The prophet knew firsthand the pain of judgment and this message of hope would enable them to carry on and create a new future. Clearly, the prophet affirms God's sovereignty throughout history. Regardless of events, God is moving mankind toward the fulfillment of His purpose. Even though people are responsible and accountable for their own actions, everything that happens works toward that divine goal.

Featured Verse Topics

That goal is the kingdom of God. Achtemeier, Elizabeth. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers, Craigie, Peter. As the prophets from this period begin to speak, the glory days of opulent building projects and territorial expansion are well past. Such circumstances provide the soil for corruption on the part of those desperate to hold on to their power and diminishing wealth, and a widening gap between the rich and the poor. See the analysis of M. Gottwald and R. Horsley; Maryknoll: Orbis, , Although the prophets use the imagery of prostitution and adultery, God is accusing Israel of economic and social corruption, not sexual immorality.

Alas for those who devise wickedness and evil deeds on their beds! When the morning dawns, they perform it, because it is in their power. They covet fields, and seize them; houses, and take them away; they oppress householder and house, people and their inheritance. Micah —2. God deliberately put Hosea in a corrupt and difficult family situation. Could it be that God deliberately puts people in corrupt and difficult workplaces today?

About Thomas J. Finley

If you abhor corruption, can you do more to fight it by working as a lawyer in a prestigious firm or as a building inspector in a mafia-dominated city? Touchstone, , 7. The same God who demands change also promises to make change possible. The Twelve Prophets carry a fundamental optimism that God is active in the world to change it for the better. Despite the calamity the people are bringing upon themselves, God is at work to restore the goodness of life and work that he intended from the beginning. The closing oracles of Joel, Hosea and Amos Hos. The threshing floors shall be full of grain, the vats shall overflow with wine and oil….

You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, and praise the name of the Lord your God, who has dealt wondrously with you. And my people shall never again be put to shame. Joel , Hosea I will restore the fortunes of my people Israel, and they shall rebuild the ruined cities and inhabit them; they shall plant vineyards and drink their wine, and they shall make gardens and eat their fruit. Amos The means he will use is the work of his people.

The most egregious case is work that is inherently sinful. Micah mentions prostitution, probably in this case cult prostitution, and he promises that the wages from it would be burned Micah A straightforward application of this would be to rule out prostitution as a legitimate occupation, even it if might be an understandable choice for those who have no other way to provide for themselves or their families.

There are other jobs that also raise the question, should this job be done at all?

We can all think of various examples, no doubt, and Christians would do well to seek work that benefits others and society as a whole. But Micah is speaking to Israel as a whole, not only to individuals.

He is critiquing a society in which social, economic, and religious conditions make prostitution viable. His words are scathing. Should you not know justice? God promises to end the social abuses centered at the cultic shrines. At the same time, like the prophets of Israel, we need to call individuals to repent of wilfully engaging in sinful labour. When the prophets speak of prostitution they are seldom concerned merely with that particular line of work. In a broad reminder that wages may be unjustly earned, Amos indicts the merchants who use inferior products, false weights, and other deceptions to reap a profit at the expense of vulnerable consumers.

Many otherwise-legitimate ways of making a living may become unjust by the way they are performed. Should a photographer takes pictures of anything a client asks, without regard for its effect on its subject and viewers? Should a surgeon perform any kind of elective surgery a patient might be willing to pay for? Is a mortgage broker responsible to ensure the ability of a borrower to repay the loan without undue hardship? If our work is a form of service under God, we cannot ignore such questions. We need to be careful not to imagine a hierarchy of work, however.

Justice in work is not only an individual matter. People have a responsibility to make sure that everyone in society has access to the resources needed to make a living. Amos criticizes Israel for injustice in this respect, most vividly in an allusion to the law of gleaning.