What Is the Shortest Book of the Bible

What Is the Shortest Book of the Bible?

The Bible, the sacred text of Christianity, is comprised of 66 books that are divided into the Old and New Testaments. Ranging from lengthy narratives to concise letters, each book serves a unique purpose and contributes to the overarching message of God’s love and redemption. Among these books, there is one that stands out for its brevity – the Book of Obadiah. With only 21 verses, it is widely recognized as the shortest book in the Bible. In this article, we will explore the Book of Obadiah, its content, and its significance within the biblical canon.

Overview of the Book of Obadiah

The Book of Obadiah is a prophetic book found in the Old Testament. It is named after its author, Obadiah, whose name means “servant of Yahweh” or “worshipper of Yahweh.” Although little is known about Obadiah himself, the book is thought to have been written during the reign of King Jehoram of Judah, around 840-830 BC.

The primary focus of the Book of Obadiah is the judgment and downfall of the nation of Edom. Edom was a neighboring nation of Israel, descended from Esau, the brother of Jacob. Despite their ancestral connection, Edom frequently opposed and oppressed Israel throughout its history. The book highlights Edom’s arrogance, violence, and lack of compassion towards their brethren, proclaiming divine judgment upon them.

Key Themes and Messages

Despite its brevity, the Book of Obadiah contains several important themes and messages. Firstly, it emphasizes the consequences of pride and arrogance. Edom’s downfall is attributed to their haughty attitude and their belief that they were invincible. This serves as a warning to all individuals and nations who exalt themselves above others.

Secondly, the book illustrates the concept of divine justice. It reassures the people of Israel that God is aware of their suffering and will bring retribution upon their enemies. This theme provides hope and comfort to those who are oppressed or facing injustice, reminding them that God is just and will ultimately vindicate them.

Furthermore, the Book of Obadiah also highlights God’s faithfulness to His covenant with Israel. Despite Israel’s shortcomings and struggles, God remains committed to His chosen people. The book ends with a promise of restoration and deliverance for Israel, symbolizing God’s enduring love and mercy.


Q: How long does it take to read the Book of Obadiah?
A: Due to its brevity, the Book of Obadiah can be read in approximately five minutes.

Q: Why is the Book of Obadiah significant?
A: The Book of Obadiah is significant as it addresses the theme of divine justice and highlights God’s faithfulness to His covenant with Israel.

Q: Can the Book of Obadiah be applied to our lives today?
A: Although the book was written in a specific historical context, its themes of pride, justice, and God’s faithfulness are applicable to our lives today. It encourages us to examine our attitudes, seek justice, and trust in God’s faithfulness.

Q: Are there any lessons to be learned from the downfall of Edom?
A: Yes, the downfall of Edom serves as a reminder of the consequences of pride and arrogance. It teaches us the importance of humility and compassion towards others.

Q: Does the Book of Obadiah have any connections to other books in the Bible?
A: Yes, the book contains references to other prophetic books such as Jeremiah and Ezekiel, as well as the historical account of the destruction of Jerusalem in 586 BC.

In conclusion, the Book of Obadiah may be the shortest book in the Bible, but it is not lacking in significance. It offers valuable insights into the consequences of pride, the concept of divine justice, and God’s faithfulness to His people. Despite its brevity, the book carries timeless messages that are relevant to our lives today.

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