Exodus 32:18
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Moses replied: "It is not the sound of victory, it is not the sound of defeat; it is the sound of singing that I hear."

New Living Translation
But Moses replied, "No, it's not a shout of victory nor the wailing of defeat. I hear the sound of a celebration."

English Standard Version
But he said, “It is not the sound of shouting for victory, or the sound of the cry of defeat, but the sound of singing that I hear.”

New American Standard Bible
But he said, "It is not the sound of the cry of triumph, Nor is it the sound of the cry of defeat; But the sound of singing I hear."

King James Bible
And he said, It is not the voice of them that shout for mastery, neither is it the voice of them that cry for being overcome: but the noise of them that sing do I hear.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
But Moses replied: It's not the sound of a victory cry and not the sound of a cry of defeat; I hear the sound of singing!

International Standard Version
Moses said, "It is not the sound of a victory shout, and it's not the sound of a shout of defeat, but it's the sound of singing that I hear."

NET Bible
Moses said, "It is not the sound of those who shout for victory, nor is it the sound of those who cry because they are overcome, but the sound of singing I hear."

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Moses replied, "It's not the sound of winners shouting. It's not the sound of losers crying. It's the sound of a wild celebration that I hear."

Jubilee Bible 2000
And he answered, It is not the voice of those that shout for mastery, neither is it the voice of those that cry for being overcome, but the noise of those that sing that I hear.

King James 2000 Bible
And he said, It is not the voice of them that shout for mastery, neither is it the voice of them that cry for being overcome: but the noise of them that sing do I hear.

American King James Version
And he said, It is not the voice of them that shout for mastery, neither is it the voice of them that cry for being overcome: but the noise of them that sing do I hear.

American Standard Version
And he said, It is not the voice of them that shout for mastery, neither is it the voice of them that cry for being overcome; but the noise of them that sing do I hear.

Douay-Rheims Bible
But he answered: It is not the cry of men encouraging to fight, nor the shout of men compelling to flee: but I hear the voice of singers.

Darby Bible Translation
And he said, It is not the sound of a shout of victory, neither is it the sound of a shout of defeat: it is the noise of alternate singing I hear.

English Revised Version
And he said, It is not the voice of them that shout for mastery, neither is it the voice of them that cry for being overcome: but the noise of them that sing do I hear.

Webster's Bible Translation
And he said, It is not the voice of them that shout for mastery, neither is it the voice of them that cry for being overcome: but the noise of them that sing do I hear.

World English Bible
He said, "It isn't the voice of those who shout for victory, neither is it the voice of those who cry for being overcome; but the noise of those who sing that I hear."

Young's Literal Translation
and he saith, 'It is not the voice of the crying of might, nor is it the voice of the crying of weakness -- a voice of singing I am hearing.'
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

32:15-20 What a change it is, to come down from the mount of communion with God, to converse with a wicked world. In God we see nothing but what is pure and pleasing; in the world nothing but what is sinful and provoking. That it might appear an idol is nothing in the world, Moses ground the calf to dust. Mixing this powder with their drink, signified that the backslider in heart should be filled with his own ways.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 18. This verse is difficult to translate, being markedly antithetical and at the same time idiomatic. Perhaps it would be best to render - "It is not the voice of them who raise the cry of victory, nor is it the voice of them who raise the cry of defeat - the voice of them who raise a cry do I hear." The verb is the same in all the three clauses; and it would seem that Moses simply denied that there was any sound of war without making any clear suggestion as to the real character of the disturbance.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

And he said,.... Not Joshua, as Saadiah Gaon thinks, but Moses, in answer to what Joshua had said:

it is not the voice of them that shout for mastery; that have got the better of it, and have obtained the victory, and shout on that account; or, "not the voice of a cry of strength", or "of a strong cry" (h); that is, of men who have got the victory, and are in high spirits, and shout with a strong voice; and so the Targums of Onkelos and Jonathan,"not the voice of strong men that overcome in battle:"

neither is it the voice of them that cry for being overcome; which is not a voice of shouting, but of howling; or, "not the voice of the cry of weakness", or "of a weak cry" (i); who being unable to stand their ground are conquered, and make a bitter outcry on falling into the enemy's hands, or being wounded shriek terribly, and so the above Targums,"not the voice of the weak who are overcome by the enemy in battle:"

but the noise of them that sing do I hear; as at a merry entertainment, either on a civil or religious account: Moses, who knew what the children of Israel had done, and what they were about, could better judge of the nature of the sound he heard than Joshua could, who knew nothing of what was transacting,

(h) "vox eorum qui respondeant fortiter", Tigurine version; "vox clamoris fortis", Drusius. (i) "vox eorum qui respondeant infirmiter", Tigurine version; "vox clamoris debilis", Drusius.



Exodus 32:18 Additional Commentaries
Context
Moses Descends with the Tablets
17Now when Joshua heard the sound of the people as they shouted, he said to Moses, "There is a sound of war in the camp." 18But he said, "It is not the sound of the cry of triumph, Nor is it the sound of the cry of defeat; But the sound of singing I hear."
Cross References
Exodus 32:17
When Joshua heard the noise of the people shouting, he said to Moses, "There is the sound of war in the camp."

Exodus 32:19
When Moses approached the camp and saw the calf and the dancing, his anger burned and he threw the tablets out of his hands, breaking them to pieces at the foot of the mountain.
Treasury of Scripture

And he said, It is not the voice of them that shout for mastery, neither is it the voice of them that cry for being overcome: but the noise of them that sing do I hear.

being overcome. Heb. weakness. but the

Exodus 15:1 Then sang Moses and the children of Israel this song to the LORD, …

Daniel 5:4,23 They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of silver, of …

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