No Small Message
Today’s scripture selection: Obadiah
Key verse: Obadiah 15
It is the smallest book in the Old Testament – but within it we find a large and important message: God cares.
God is not distant; detached; unaware. Instead, just as ancient Israel could, we can take comfort in God’s loving protection.
That’s why there was a very clear warning given in the book to the people of Edom – a nation that was related to the people of Israel by way of a shared ancestor – Esau.
The Edomites lived near the people of Israel – but they were anything but “close” relatives. In fact, they took pleasure at Israel’s misfortunes.
In response, God warned them, they would suffer His righteous judgment upon them.
Why does that matter to you and me, thousands of years later?
Because it reassures us that we are not alone in a cruel universe, overseen by some distant deity that could care less.
It also reminds us that we should never be smug or superior in our attitude toward others. God watches over all His children – and cares very deeply about any and all that are mistreated.
It seems to me that this ancient word of warning given to a warrior people of long ago speaks to both the aggressor and victim.
“The day of the LORD is near for all nations. As you have done, it will be done to you; your deeds will return upon your own head.”
Doesn’t that sound an awful lot like the “golden rule” once found on Jesus’ lips?
“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
It all comes down to this: as individuals; as family members, as citizens; as nations; as a church – we should all take note.
God is watching. He cares very much about how we treat one another.
And that’s no small message.
Prayer: Lord, help me to be watchful – as you are – not just over my neighbor’s behavior – but mine as well. AMEN.