חֲז֖וֹן עֹֽבַדְיָ֑ה כֹּֽה־אָמַר֩ אֲדֹנָ֨י יְהוִ֜ה לֶאֱד֗וֹם שְׁמוּעָ֨ה שָׁמַ֜עְנוּ מֵאֵ֤ת יְהוָה֙ וְצִיר֙ בַּגּוֹיִ֣ם שֻׁלָּ֔ח ק֛וּמוּ וְנָק֥וּמָה עָלֶיהָ לַמִּלְחָמָֽה׃
A vision of Ovadiyah. Thus says Lord YHWH to Edom. A message we heard from YHWH, and a messenger was sent among the nations. “Get up! and let us get up against her to battle!”
Paraphrase: This is the vision which Obadiah, God’s prophet, saw. YHWH, the Great King, has a message for Edom. We heard this message, and now we are taking it to the nations. “Listen, all you nations! It’s time to get up and to prepare for battle. Summon your armies, sharpen your weapons, get out the chariots, and prepare to invade the land of Edom.
שֻׁלָּח = pual
הִנֵּ֥ה קָטֹ֛ן נְתַתִּ֖יךָ בַּגּוֹיִ֑ם בָּז֥וּי אַתָּ֖ה מְאֹֽד׃
Behold, small I gave you among the nations, being despised, you are greatly.
Paraphrase: Look, I have caused you to be small and weak amongst all the nations of the earth. The nations around you hold you in contempt.
זְד֤וֹן לִבְּךָ֙ הִשִּׁיאֶ֔ךָ שֹׁכְנִ֥י בְחַגְוֵי־סֶּ֖לַע מְר֣וֹם שִׁבְתּ֑וֹ אֹמֵ֣ר בְּלִבּ֔וֹ מִ֥י יוֹרִדֵ֖נִי אָֽרֶץ׃
The pride of your heart has deceived you; dwelling in the clefts of the rock, the heights of his seat saying in his heart, “Who will cause me to descend the land?”
Paraphrase: Yet you think you are untouchable. Let me disabuse you of your delusion. Your pride has caused you to misjudge. You think that living high in the rocky cliffs of Sela makes you impregnable. “No one could ever dislodge us from these rocky fortresses.” you say to yourself.
For Sela, see the article on Petra here.
אִם־תַּגְבִּ֣יהַּ כַּנֶּ֔שֶׁר וְאִם־בֵּ֥ין כּֽוֹכָבִ֖ים שִׂ֣ים קִנֶּ֑ךָ מִשָּׁ֥ם אוֹרִֽידְךָ֖ נְאֻם־יְהוָֽה׃
If you were high as an eagle and if between stars you placed your nest, from there, I would cause you to descend.” an utterance of YHWH.
Paraphrase: It doesn’t matter how high the rock is on which you build your cities. It doesn’t matter how unreachable it is. If you could soar as high as the eagle or even build your nest between the stars of heaven, it wouldn’t make any difference to Me. I am able to reach you no matter where you hide. I can bring you down from any rocky fortress.
אִם־גַּנָּבִ֤ים בָּאֽוּ־לְךָ֙ אִם־שׁ֣וֹדְדֵי לַ֔יְלָה אֵ֣יךְ נִדְמֵ֔יתָה הֲל֥וֹא יִגְנְב֖וּ דַּיָּ֑ם אִם־בֹּֽצְרִים֙ בָּ֣אוּ לָ֔ךְ הֲל֖וֹא יַשְׁאִ֥ירוּ עֹלֵלֽוֹת׃
If thieves came to you; if marauders by night, how are you cut off! Will not they steal their enough? If the grape-harvesters come to you, will not they leave the gleanings?
Paraphrase: Think of it this way. If thieves came to your house to steal, would they take absolutely everything in the house? If vandals came to destroy and steal, would they not take what they wanted and leave the rest? Think of those workers who harvest grapes; do they take everything? Certainly not; they will leave behind some of the grapes from which the poor may glean. (Deuteronomy 24:21) Oh how terrible and complete will be your destruction!
אֵ֚יךְ נֶחְפְּשׂ֣וּ עֵשָׂ֔ו נִבְע֖וּ מַצְפֻּנָֽיו׃
How are [the things] of Esau searched out; his hidden treasures inquired for?
Paraphrase: Look how diligently they search for loot amongst the wreckage of what was once the kingdom of Esau? See how the enemy leaves no stone unturned in their search for treasure.
עַֽד־הַגְּב֣וּל שִׁלְּח֗וּךָ כֹּ֚ל אַנְשֵׁ֣י בְרִיתֶ֔ךָ הִשִּׁיא֛וּךָ יָכְל֥וּ לְךָ֖ אַנְשֵׁ֣י שְׁלֹמֶ֑ךָ לַחְמְךָ֗ יָשִׂ֤ימוּ מָזוֹר֙ תַּחְתֶּ֔יךָ אֵ֥ין תְּבוּנָ֖ה בּֽוֹ׃
To the border, they sent you; all the men of your covenant deceived you. The men of your peace prevailed over you; [those who ate] your bread placed a net under you; there is no understanding in him.
Paraphrase: The very men with whom you had made a treaty, these very men will drive you out of your homes and cities and chase you to the borders of your homeland. These men who talked so much about peace are now the very ones shouting in triumph over you. You sat down with these men at a ratification meal to seal and celebrate the new relationship that existed between you both. Soon enough, however, they will turn right around and set a vicious trap for you; you will have no idea what is coming.
הֲל֛וֹא בַּיּ֥וֹם הַה֖וּא נְאֻם־יְהוָ֑ה וְהַאֲבַדְתִּ֤י חֲכָמִים֙ מֵֽאֱד֔וֹם וּתְבוּנָ֖ה מֵהַ֥ר עֵשָֽׂו׃
וְחַתּ֥וּ גִבּוֹרֶ֖יךָ תֵּימָ֑ן לְמַ֧עַן יִכָּֽרֶת־אִ֛ישׁ מֵהַ֥ר עֵשָׂ֖ו מִקָּֽטֶל׃
מֵחֲמַ֛ס אָחִ֥יךָ יַעֲקֹ֖ב תְּכַסְּךָ֣ בוּשָׁ֑ה וְנִכְרַ֖תָּ לְעוֹלָֽם׃
בְּיוֹם֙ עֲמָֽדְךָ֣ מִנֶּ֔גֶד בְּי֛וֹם שְׁב֥וֹת זָרִ֖ים חֵיל֑וֹ וְנָכְרִ֞ים בָּ֣אוּ שַׁעֲרוֹ וְעַל־יְרוּשָׁלִַ֙ם֙ יַדּ֣וּ גוֹרָ֔ל גַּם־אַתָּ֖ה כְּאַחַ֥ד מֵהֶֽם׃
וְאַל־תֵּ֤רֶא בְיוֹם־אָחִ֙יךָ֙ בְּי֣וֹם נָכְר֔וֹ וְאַל־תִּשְׂמַ֥ח לִבְנֵֽי־יְהוּדָ֖ה בְּי֣וֹם אָבְדָ֑ם וְאַל־תַּגְדֵּ֥ל פִּ֖יךָ בְּי֥וֹם צָרָֽה׃
and do not look on your brother’s day, in the day of his misfortune and do not rejoice for the sons of Judah in the day of their destruction, and do not make great your mouth in the day of distress.
Paraphrase: How can you look on your brother’s distress and be pleased with it? Why are you rejoicing to see the sons of Judah struck down and destroyed? You are shouting insults at him even when he is at his lowest point.
The infinitive אָבְדָם is here used as a noun.
There are eight prohibitions which summarize the nature of the Lord’s complaint against Edom. Each prohibition alludes to something that Edom did to Judah that should not have been done by one “brother” to another. It is because of these violations that the Lord has initiated judgment against Edom. In the Hebrew text these prohibitions are expressed by אַל plus the jussive form of the verb, which is common in negative commands of immediate urgency. Such constructions would normally have the sense of prohibiting something either not yet begun (i.e., “do not start to …”) or something already in process at the time of speaking (i.e., “stop …”). Here, however, it seems more likely that the prohibitions refer to a situation in past rather than future time (i.e., “you should not have …”). If so, the verbs are being used in a rhetorical fashion, as though the prophet were vividly projecting himself back into the events that he is describing and urging the Edomites not to do what in fact they have already done.
Davidson (§63) says that when there is more than one of these prohibitions as here, אַל is used for the first and then לא is used for the each of the others. When the language is meant to be especially impassioned, however, אַל is repeated each time.
אַל־תָּב֤וֹא בְשַֽׁעַר־עַמִּי֙ בְּי֣וֹם אֵידָ֔ם אַל־תֵּ֧רֶא גַם־אַתָּ֛ה בְּרָעָת֖וֹ בְּי֣וֹם אֵיד֑וֹ וְאַל־תִּשְׁלַ֥חְנָה בְחֵיל֖וֹ בְּי֥וֹם אֵידֽוֹ׃
Do not enter through the gate of My people in the day of their distress; do not look, even you, on his misery in the day of his distress and do not send in his wealth in the day of his distress.
Paraphrase: You should not have rushed into the cities of My people when they were under such distress. What a pity that even you, Israel’s own brother, jumped at the chance to capitalize on his terrible predicament. You rushed into their cities to plunder and steal and loot. Nothing was off limits; you grabbed whatever you could knowing that Israel was in no position to fight back or resist.
Note the paronomasia (p321) with the word for distress sounding so similar to Edom.
וְאַֽל־תַּעֲמֹד֙ עַל־הַפֶּ֔רֶק לְהַכְרִ֖ית אֶת־פְּלִיטָ֑יו וְאַל־תַּסְגֵּ֥ר שְׂרִידָ֖יו בְּי֥וֹם צָרָֽה׃
כִּֽי־קָר֥וֹב יוֹם־יְהוָ֖ה עַל־כָּל־הַגּוֹיִ֑ם כַּאֲשֶׁ֤ר עָשִׂ֙יתָ֙ יֵעָ֣שֶׂה לָּ֔ךְ גְּמֻלְךָ֖ יָשׁ֥וּב בְּרֹאשֶֽׁךָ׃
כִּ֗י כַּֽאֲשֶׁ֤ר שְׁתִיתֶם֙ עַל־הַ֣ר קָדְשִׁ֔י יִשְׁתּ֥וּ כָֽל־הַגּוֹיִ֖ם תָּמִ֑יד וְשָׁת֣וּ וְלָע֔וּ וְהָי֖וּ כְּל֥וֹא הָיֽוּ׃
וּבְהַ֥ר צִיּ֛וֹן תִּהְיֶ֥ה פְלֵיטָ֖ה וְהָ֣יָה קֹ֑דֶשׁ וְיָֽרְשׁוּ֙ בֵּ֣ית יַֽעֲקֹ֔ב אֵ֖ת מוֹרָֽשֵׁיהֶם׃
וְהָיָה֩ בֵית־יַעֲקֹ֨ב אֵ֜שׁ וּבֵ֧ית יוֹסֵ֣ף לֶהָבָ֗ה וּבֵ֤ית עֵשָׂו֙ לְקַ֔שׁ וְדָלְק֥וּ בָהֶ֖ם וַאֲכָל֑וּם וְלֹֽא־יִֽהְיֶ֤ה שָׂרִיד֙ לְבֵ֣ית עֵשָׂ֔ו כִּ֥י יְהוָ֖ה דִּבֵּֽר׃
וְיָרְשׁ֨וּ הַנֶּ֜גֶב אֶת־הַ֣ר עֵשָׂ֗ו וְהַשְּׁפֵלָה֙ אֶת־פְּלִשְׁתִּ֔ים וְיָרְשׁוּ֙ אֶת־שְׂדֵ֣ה אֶפְרַ֔יִם וְאֵ֖ת שְׂדֵ֣ה שֹׁמְר֑וֹן וּבִנְיָמִ֖ן אֶת־הַגִּלְעָֽד׃
וְגָלֻ֣ת הַֽחֵל־הַ֠זֶּה לִבְנֵ֨י יִשְׂרָאֵ֤ל אֲשֶֽׁר־כְּנַעֲנִים֙ עַד־צָ֣רְפַ֔ת וְגָלֻ֥ת יְרוּשָׁלִַ֖ם אֲשֶׁ֣ר בִּסְפָרַ֑ד יִֽרְשׁ֕וּ אֵ֖ת עָרֵ֥י הַנֶּֽגֶב׃
וְעָל֤וּ מֽוֹשִׁעִים֙ בְּהַ֣ר צִיּ֔וֹן לִשְׁפֹּ֖ט אֶת־הַ֣ר עֵשָׂ֑ו וְהָיְתָ֥ה לַֽיהוָ֖ה הַמְּלוּכָֽה׃