What does Obadiah 1:19 mean?
ESV: Those of the Negeb shall possess Mount Esau, and those of the Shephelah shall possess the land of the Philistines; they shall possess the land of Ephraim and the land of Samaria, and Benjamin shall possess Gilead.
NIV: People from the Negev will occupy the mountains of Esau, and people from the foothills will possess the land of the Philistines. They will occupy the fields of Ephraim and Samaria, and Benjamin will possess Gilead.
NASB: Then those of the Negev will possess the mountain of Esau, And those of the Shephelah the Philistine plain; Also, they will possess the territory of Ephraim and the territory of Samaria, And Benjamin the territory of Gilead.
CSB: People from the Negev will possess the hill country of Esau; those from the Judean foothills will possess the land of the Philistines. They will possess the territories of Ephraim and Samaria, while Benjamin will possess Gilead.
NLT: 'Then my people living in the Negev will occupy the mountains of Edom. Those living in the foothills of Judah will possess the Philistine plains and take over the fields of Ephraim and Samaria. And the people of Benjamin will occupy the land of Gilead.
KJV: And they of the south shall possess the mount of Esau; and they of the plain the Philistines: and they shall possess the fields of Ephraim, and the fields of Samaria: and Benjamin shall possess Gilead.
NKJV: The South shall possess the mountains of Esau, And the Lowland shall possess Philistia. They shall possess the fields of Ephraim And the fields of Samaria. Benjamin shall possess Gilead.
Verse Commentary:
One of Edom's worst crimes against Israel was helping invaders take Jews from their lands (Obadiah 1:14). God's judgment often involves suffering the same sins committed against others. In a final judgment on Edom, after being defeated, shamed, and eventually destroyed, even their land will be occupied by the very people they hated. Most of the prophecies of Obadiah have already occurred, from the perspective of the modern reader. Some, such as the division of territories in verses 19 and 20, will not be totally fulfilled until the end times.

Mount Esau is a reference to the territory of Edom, since Esau's children became the Edomites. It's interesting to note that not only will Edom be occupied, but also the territory of the Philistines, another hated enemy of Israel. Benjamin, although a tiny tribe, will possess a large territory in Gilead. People of the Negeb (Joshua 10:40) and those of the Shephelah (Jeremiah 17:26) are mentioned elsewhere in the Old Testament.

Verse Context:
Obadiah 1:19–21 describes how Israel's territory will be divided during the end times. Many Old Testament prophets looked beyond the immediate judgment of God, to the day when all promised would be completely fulfilled. The book of Obadiah explains how Edom would be judged for their crimes against Israel. Historically, most of these punishments have already happened. Some final results, however, will not be complete until the end times.
Chapter Summary:
The nation of Edom grew from Esau, the brother of Jacob. Jacob would later be re-named ''Israel.'' Despite being so closely related, Israel had few long-term enemies as spiteful as the Edomites. In the short prophecy given by Obadiah, Edom is warned of God's judgment. Edom is particularly condemned for aiding Israel's enemies in a time of war. This warning is extended to all nations that reject God: judgment for your sin is coming, but God will be merciful to those who obey Him.
Chapter Context:
Obadiah is the shortest book in the Old Testament, with only one chapter of 21 verses. In just a few words, it delivers a warning of judgment on Edom, one of Israel's oldest enemies. This passage also warns every nation that defies God that there will be a reckoning. The end of Obadiah's prophecy involves the division of land during the end times.
Book Summary:
Obadiah is an excellent introduction to Old Testament prophecy. In just 21 verses, it covers all of the typical contents found in the prophets. Themes of wrongdoing, imminent judgment, God's mercy, and His restoration are all found in this short book. Reading Obadiah is somewhat like reading the dust jacket of a much larger novel. Obadiah is also interesting in that it is not addressed to Israel, but to the nation of Edom.
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