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Bible Commentaries

Expositor's Dictionary of Texts

Obadiah 1

Verse 1

Possessions Possessed

Obadiah 1:17

They shall not finally lack anything which is rightly theirs. Their promised inheritance shall ultimately appertain to them. God will see to it that His people have estate corresponding to their dignity of character. 'The house of Jacob shall possess their possessions.'

I. Precious Possessions. The house of Jacob have 'their possessions'. We are informed by our scholars that the word here rendered 'possessions' is a rare word in the original. A rare word is used to describe rare possessions. So special is the quality of that which is alluded to that a unique word has to be requisitioned. The possessions of the people of God as singularly precious.

The possessions set forth by Obadiah are (1) vision, (2) deliverance, (3) holiness.

II. Precious Possessions Unpossessed. ' The house of Jacob shall possess their possessions.' That 'shall' is ominous. Do they not possess them now? And if not, why not?

Reason is assigned by Obadiah. The house of Jacob was enduring 'the day of their destruction' (Obadiah 1:12 ). It was 'the day of their calamity' (Obadiah 1:13 ).

And how had this come about? Alas! Partly as retribution for their past negligence and sin.

They did once possess their possessions, but they had been retributively dispossessed of them. They had proved unworthy of such treasure.

III. Precious Possessions Possessed. 'The house of Jacob shall possess their possessions' is a grander word far on Christian lips than on the lips which uttered it first The channels of grace deepen as they run through Scripture. Numerous converts to the faith are a precious possession we may possess. John Bunyan said in his immortal Grace Abounding: 'I have counted as if I had goodly buildings and lordships in those places where my children were born'. And the glorious evangelist was right in his accounting. No possession is more precious than spiritual children. May Zion's converts be many! May each of us possess our possessions!

Fellowship with God is a possession we may all possess. By grace many of us do possess that precious possession. Temporal provision is another of our possessions, and God promises us we shall possess it. Hold to the promise amid all the strain and poverty of these times, my much-cumbered hearers.

Heaven is of all our possessions the most precious, and that we shall at length possess. God told Abraham that to him and to his seed after him He would give Canaan 'for an everlasting possession'. To the Christian Abraham's seed this promise is secured. And when the Lord willeth we shall go in and enjoy the good land for ever.

Dinsdale T. Young, The Gospel of the Left Hand, p. 179.

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Bibliographical Information
Nicoll, William Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on Obadiah 1". Expositor's Dictionary of Text. https://studylight.org/commentaries/eng/edt/obadiah-1.html. 1910.