1:8 At that time,” 1 the Lord says,
“I will destroy the wise sages of Edom! 2
the advisers 3 from Esau’s mountain! 4
1:9 Your warriors will be shattered, O Teman, 5
so that 6 everyone 7 will be destroyed 8 from Esau’s mountain!
1:19 The people of the Negev 9 will take possession 10 of Esau’s mountain,
and the people of the Shephelah 11 will take
possession 12 of the land of 13 the Philistines.
They will also take possession of the territory of Ephraim and the territory of Samaria,
and the people of Benjamin will take possession 14 of Gilead. 15
1:21 Those who have been delivered 16 will go up on Mount Zion
in order to rule over 17 Esau’s mountain.
Then the Lord will reign as King! 18
1 tn Heb “in that day” (so KJV, NIV); NAB, NASB, NRSV “on that day.”
2 tn Heb “Will I not destroy those who are wise from Edom?” The rhetorical question functions as an emphatic affirmation. For the sake of clarity this has been represented by the emphatic indicative in the translation.
3 tn Heb “understanding”; NIV “men of understanding.” This undoubtedly refers to members of the royal court who offered political and military advice to the Edomite kings. In the ancient Near East, such men of wisdom were often associated with divination and occultic practices (cf. Isa 3:3, 47:10, 13). The Edomites were also renown in the ancient Near East as a center of traditional sagacity and wisdom; perhaps that is referred to here (cf. Jer 49:7).
4 tn Heb “and understanding from the mountain of Esau.” The phrase “I will remove the men of…” does not appear in the Hebrew but is supplied in the translation for the sake of clarity and smoothness. Here “understanding” is a synecdoche of part for whole; the faculty of understanding is put for the wise men who possess it.
5 sn Teman, like Sela, was a prominent city of Edom. The name Teman is derived from the name of a grandson of Esau (cf. Gen 36:11). Here it is a synecdoche of part for whole, standing for all of Edom.
6 tn The Hebrew word used here (לְמַעַן, lÿma’an) usually expresses purpose. The sense in this context, however, is more likely that of result.
7 tn Heb “a man,” meaning “every single person” here; cf. KJV “every one.”
8 tn Heb “cut off” (so KJV, NASB, NRSV); NIV, NLT “cut down”; CEV “wiped out.”
9 tn Heb “the Negev”; ASV “the South”; NCV, TEV “southern Judah.” The Hebrew text does not have the words “the people of,” but these words have been supplied in the translation for clarity. The place name “the Negev” functions as a synecdoche (container for contents) for the people living in the Negev.
sn The Negev is a dry, hot, arid region in the southern portion of Judah.
10 sn The verb יָרַשׁ (yarash, “to take possession of [something]”) which is repeated three times in vv. 19-20 for emphasis, often implies a violent means of acquisition, such as through military conquest. Obadiah here pictures a dramatic reversal: Judah’s enemies, who conquered them then looted all her valuable possessions, will soon be conquered by the Judeans who will in turn take possession of their valuables. The punishment will fit the crime.
11 tn The Hebrew text does not have the words “the people of,” but they are supplied in the translation since “the Shephelah” functions as a synecdoche referring to residents of this region.
sn The Shephelah as a region refers to the Palestinian foothills that rise from the coastal plain. In much of Old Testament times they served as a divide between the people of Judah and the Philistines.
12 tn The phrase “will take possession” does not appear in this clause, but is implied from its previous use in this verse. It is supplied in the translation for the sake of smoothness.
13 tn The words “the land of” are not present in the Hebrew text. They are supplied in the translation for clarity.
14 tn The phrase “will take possession” does not appear in this clause, but is implied from its previous use in this verse. It is supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons.
15 sn Gilead is a mountainous region on the eastern side of the Jordan River in what is today the country of Jordan.
16 tc The present translation follows the reading מוּשָׁעִים (musha’im, “those who have been delivered”; cf. NRSV, CEV) rather than מוֹשִׁעִים (moshi’im,“deliverers”; cf. NASB, NIV, NLT) of the MT (cf. LXX, Aquila, Theodotion, and Syriac).
17 tn Heb “to judge.” In this context the term does not mean “to render judgment on,” but “to rule over” (cf. NAB “to rule”; NIV “to govern”).
18 tn Heb “then the kingdom will belong to the