The Sacred BibleThe Prophecy of Obadiah
[Abdias 1]
[Obadiah 1]

{1:1} Visio Abdiæ. Hæc dicit Dominus Deus ad Edom: Auditum audivimus a Domino, et legatum ad gentes misit: Surgite, et consurgamus adversus eum in prælium.
{1:1} The vision of Obadiah. Thus says the Lord God to Edom: We have heard a report from the Lord, and he has sent an envoy to the nations: “Arise, and let us together rise up in battle against him.”

~ ‘Auditum’ is a report or a message or, more literally, something that has been heard. In this verse, the Lord sends an envoy or messenger (or even a message) to the nations to rise up against Edom.

{1:2} Ecce parvulum dedi te in gentibus: contemptibilis tu es valde.
{1:2} Behold, I have made you little among the nations. You are greatly contemptible.

{1:3} Superbia cordis tui extulit te, habitantem in scissuris petrarum, exaltantem solium tuum: qui dicis in corde tuo: Quis detrahet me in terram?
{1:3} The arrogance of your heart has lifted you up, living in the clefts of the rocks, exalting your throne. You say in your heart, “Who will pull me down to the ground?”

~ The word ‘extulit’ means to lift up or to carry, but it can also refer to the process of lifting up and carrying someone to burial, which is an appropriate subtext for this passage of strong rebuke from the Lord.

{1:4} Si exaltatus fueris ut aquila, et si inter sidera posueris nidum tuum: inde detraham te, dicit Dominus.
{1:4} Though you have been lifted high like an eagle, and though you have placed your nest among the stars, from there I will pull you down, says the Lord.

{1:5} Si fures introissent ad te, si latrones per noctem, quomodo conticuisses? nonne furati essent sufficientia sibi? si vindemiatores introissent ad te, numquid saltem racemum reliquissent tibi?
{1:5} If thieves had approached you, if robbers by night, how would you have remained unnoticed? Would they not have stolen all that they wanted? If the grape-pickers had approached you, would they not have left you at least a cluster?

~ The word ‘conticuisses’ does not mean to remain silent, but to go unnoticed. In other words, how would you have avoided being robbed by going unnoticed by the robbers? You cannot go unnoticed if you have exalted yourself.

{1:6} Quomodo scrutati sunt Esau? Investigaverunt abscondita eius.
{1:6} In what way have they been examining Esau? They investigated his secrets.

~ In this Latin sentence, the question is found in the first part and the answer in the second part. But the question mark is placed at the end of the sentence in other editions of this Latin text: ‘Quomodo scrutati sunt Esau, investigaverunt abscondita eius?’ This is merely a peculiarity of Latin, it does not indicate that both parts of the sentence are questions.

{1:7} Usque ad terminum emiserunt te: omnes viri fœderis tui illuserunt tibi: invaluerunt adversum te viri pacis tuæ: qui comedunt tecum, ponent insidias subter te: non est prudentia in eo.
{1:7} They have sent you out all the way to the limit. All the men of your alliance have deceived you. Your men of peace have prevailed against you. Those who eat with you will place snares under you. There is no foresight in him.

~ The word ‘viri’ in this context does not merely mean men, but the men who are leaders.

{1:8} Numquid non in die illa, dicit Dominus, perdam sapientes de Idumæa, et prudentiam de monte Esau?
{1:8} Shall I not, in that day, says the Lord, wipe away understanding from Idumea and foresight from the mount of Esau?

{1:9} Et timebunt fortes tui a Meridie, ut intereat vir de monte Esau.
{1:9} And your strong from the Meridian will be afraid, so that man may perish from the mount of Esau.

~ In my interpretation, Meridian refers to most of Africa (but not the northern part that becomes part of the great monarch’s kingdom).

{1:10} Propter interfectionem, et propter iniquitatem in fratrem tuum Iacob, operiet te confusio, et peribis in æternum.
{1:10} Because of the execution, and because of the iniquity against your brother Jacob, confusion will cover you, and you will pass away into eternity.

~ The phrase ‘peribis in æternum’ could be translated as ‘perish forever.’ But it does not necessarily mean that those who perish go to Hell. The phrase ‘in æternum’ tends to suggest the eternity of Heaven. Thus, those who pass away because of these offences are still worthy enough for eternal life.

{1:11} In die cum stares adversus eum, quando capiebant alieni exercitum eius, et extranei ingrediebantur portas eius, et super Ierusalem mittebant sortem: tu quoque eras quasi unus ex eis.
{1:11} In the day when you stood against him, when strangers seized his army, and foreigners entered into his gates, and they cast lots over Jerusalem: you also were just like one of them.

{1:12} Et non despicies in die fratris tui, in die peregrinationis eius: et non lætaberis super filios Iuda in die perditionis eorum: et non magnificabis os tuum in die angustiæ.
{1:12} But you shall not show disdain for the day of your brother in the day of his sojourn. And you shall not rejoice over the sons of Judah in the day of their perdition. And you shall not magnify your mouth in the day of anguish.

{1:13} Neque ingriederis portam populi mei in die ruinæ eorum: neque despicies et tu in malis eius in die vastitatis illius: et non emitteris adversus exercitum eius in die vastitatis illius.
{1:13} And neither shall you enter into the gate of my people in the day of their ruin. And neither shall you also show disdain for his troubles in the day of his desolation. And you shall not send out against his army in the day of his desolation.

{1:14} Neque stabis in exitibus ut interficias eos qui fugerint: et non concludes reliquos eius in die tribulationis.
{1:14} Neither shall you stand at the exits to execute those who will flee. And you shall not enclose their remnant in the day of tribulation.

{1:15} Quoniam iuxta est dies Domini super omnes gentes: sicut fecisti, fiet tibi: retributionem tuam convertet in caput tuum.
{1:15} For the day of the Lord is near, over all nations. Just as you have done, so will it be done to you. He will turn back your retribution on your own head.

{1:16} Quomodo enim bibistis super montem sanctum meum, bibent omnes gentes iugiter: et bibent, et absorbebunt, et erunt quasi non sint.
{1:16} For in the manner that you drank on my holy mountain, so shall all nations drink continually. And they will drink, and they will absorb, and they will be as if they were not.

~ The word ‘absorbebunt’ can be translated as ‘absorb’ or ‘take in’ or ‘engulf’ or ‘swallow.’

{1:17} Et in monte Sion erit salvatio, et erit sanctus: et possidebit domus Iacob eos qui se possederant.
{1:17} And on mount Zion there will be salvation, and it will be holy. And the house of Jacob will possess those who had possessed them.

{1:18} Et erit domus Iacob ignis, et domus Ioseph flamma, et domus Esau stipula: et succendentur in eis, et devorabunt eos: et non erunt reliquiæ domus Esau, quia Dominus locutus est.
{1:18} And the house of Jacob will be a fire, and the house of Joseph a flame, and the house of Esau stubble. And they will be set on fire among them, and they will devour them. And there will be no remnant of the house of Esau, for the Lord has spoken.

{1:19} Et hereditabunt hi, qui ad Austrum sunt, montem Esau, et qui in campestribus Philisthiim: et possidebunt regionem Ephraim, et regionem Samariæ: et Beniamin possidebit Galaad.
{1:19} And those who are towards the South, and who are in the camps of the Philistines, will inherit the mount of Esau. And they will possess the region of Ephraim, and the region of Samaria. And Benjamin will possess Gilead.

{1:20} Et transmigratio exercitus huius filiorum Israel, omnia loca Chananæorum usque ad Sareptam: et transmigratio Ierusalem, quæ in Bosphoro est, possidebit civitates Austri.
{1:20} And the exiles of this army of the sons of Israel, all the places of the Canaanites all the way to Sarepta, and the exiles of Jerusalem who are in Bosphoro, will possess the cities of the South.

{1:21} Et ascendent salvatores in montem Sion iudicare montem Esau: et erit Domino regnum.
{1:21} And the saviors will ascend to mount Zion to judge the mount of Esau. And the kingdom will be for the Lord.

~ The use of the plural for ‘salvatores’ indicates that it does not refer to the Messiah (the one true Savior), but to those who follow and imitate the Savior, who do his will, and so who are properly referred to as saviors.

The Sacred BibleThe Prophecy of Obadiah