Friday, July 5, 2013

A Prophecy Against Edom (Ezekiel 35)

The following quote is taken from

"God Promises More Killing -  "I will make Mount Seir utterly desolate, killing off all who try to escape and any who return.  I will fill your mountains with the dead. Your hills, your valleys, and your streams will be filled with people slaughtered by the sword.  I will make you desolate forever. Your cities will never be rebuilt. Then you will know that I am the LORD."  (Ezekiel 35:7-9 NLT)

This chapter concerns God's prophecy against the nation of Edom.  You can read the entire chapter here:

            The nation of Edom was descended from a man named Esau (Genesis 36), the twin brother of Jacob, who was the father of the tribes of Israel.  From the time that Jacob tricked Esau and stole his birthright and blessing (Genesis chapters 25 and 27), the two nations were enemies.  The Edomites refused to let the Israelites pass through their land when the Israelites were journeying to the Promised Land, and came out against them with their army (Numbers 20:14-21).  Throughout Israel's history, they and the Edomites were often at war.
            In this passage, God pronounced his judgment on the nation of Edom, and gave clear reasoning for why they had brought this judgment upon themselves.  “‘Because you harbored an ancient hostility and delivered the Israelites over to the sword at the time of their calamity, the time their punishment reached its climax, therefore as surely as I live, declares the Sovereign LORD, I will give you over to bloodshed and it will pursue you.  Since you did not hate bloodshed, bloodshed will pursue you" (Ezekiel 35:5-6, NIV).
            Even though the Edomites were related to the Israelites by blood, they had no compassion on them as they were being conquered by the Assyrians and Babylonians, and even assisted those nations in destroying Israel.  To add insult to injury, the Edomites rejoiced in the Israelites' misery (Ezekiel 35:15; Obadiah 1:12), plundered and looted Jerusalem after its destruction (Obadiah 1:13), and mistreated those Israelites who survived the destruction of Jerusalem, cutting them down and handing them over to their enemies (Obadiah 1:14).  Because of all this, and because of their utter contempt for God, they would eventually cease to exist as a nation.  "Then you will know that I the Lord have heard all the contemptible things you have said against the mountains of Israel. You said, 'They have been laid waste and have been given over to us to devour.'  You boasted against me and spoke against me without restraint, and I heard it.  This is what the Sovereign LORD says: While the whole earth rejoices, I will make you desolate.  Because you rejoiced when the inheritance of Israel became desolate, that is how I will treat you" (Ezekiel 35:12-15, NIV).