Obadiah 1:6 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Obadiah 1:6, NIV: "But how Esau will be ransacked, his hidden treasures pillaged!"

Obadiah 1:6, ESV: "How Esau has been pillaged, his treasures sought out!"

Obadiah 1:6, KJV: "How are the things of Esau searched out! how are his hidden things sought up!"

Obadiah 1:6, NASB: "Oh how Esau will be searched, And his hidden treasures searched out!"

Obadiah 1:6, NLT: "Every nook and cranny of Edom will be searched and looted. Every treasure will be found and taken."

Obadiah 1:6, CSB: "How Esau will be pillaged, his hidden treasures searched out!"

What does Obadiah 1:6 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Esau was the brother of Jacob. Jacob's descendants became the nation of Israel. Esau's descendants became the nation of Edom. Part of Edom's arrogance came from their easily-defended homes. As alluded to in verse 4, the Edomites lived in high caves in the mountains of Seir. That kind of terrain is extremely difficult to attack, let alone "pillage." And yet, as this prophecy states, that is exactly what will happen. According to history, not long after Obadiah was written, Edom was attacked and conquered by Arabic raiders.

The book of Malachi, written after this attack, indicates that Edom's cities are now ghost towns (Malachi 1:3–4). All of the well-defended caves were empty. The riches of Edom now belonged to someone else.

This verse, along with verse 5, is not only a prophecy. It's also an accusation against Edom. When Jerusalem was attacked and looted by a foreign army, Edom joined in the attack. They looted Israel. As a result, part of Edom's judgment will be getting what they gave to others.