Job 37:4
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
After that comes the sound of his roar; he thunders with his majestic voice. When his voice resounds, he holds nothing back.

New Living Translation
Then comes the roaring of the thunder--the tremendous voice of his majesty. He does not restrain it when he speaks.

English Standard Version
After it his voice roars; he thunders with his majestic voice, and he does not restrain the lightnings when his voice is heard.

Berean Study Bible
Then there comes a roaring sound; He thunders with His majestic voice. He does not restrain the lightning when His voice resounds.

New American Standard Bible
"After it, a voice roars; He thunders with His majestic voice, And He does not restrain the lightnings when His voice is heard.

King James Bible
After it a voice roareth: he thundereth with the voice of his excellency; and he will not stay them when his voice is heard.

Christian Standard Bible
Then there comes a roaring sound; God thunders with his majestic voice. He does not restrain the lightning when his rumbling voice is heard.

Contemporary English Version
God's majestic voice thunders his commands,

Good News Translation
Then the roar of his voice is heard, the majestic sound of thunder, and all the while the lightning flashes.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Then there comes a roaring sound; God thunders with His majestic voice. He does not restrain the lightning when His rumbling voice is heard.

International Standard Version
His thunder roars after it; his majestic voice will thunder; and no one can trace them once his voice has been heard.

NET Bible
After that a voice roars; he thunders with an exalted voice, and he does not hold back his lightning bolts when his voice is heard.

New Heart English Bible
After it a voice roars. He thunders with the voice of his majesty. He doesn't hold back anything when his voice is heard.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
It is followed by the roar of his voice. He thunders with his majestic voice. He doesn't hold the lightning back when his thunder is heard.

JPS Tanakh 1917
After it a voice roareth; He thundereth with the voice of His majesty; And He stayeth them not when His voice is heard.

New American Standard 1977
“After it, a voice roars; He thunders with His majestic voice; And He does not restrain the lightnings when His voice is heard.

Jubilee Bible 2000
After it shall the sound roar; his valiant voice shall thunder; and he will not stay them even when his voice is heard.

King James 2000 Bible
After it a voice roars: he thunders with the voice of his excellency; and he will not restrain them when his voice is heard.

American King James Version
After it a voice roars: he thunders with the voice of his excellency; and he will not stay them when his voice is heard.

American Standard Version
After it a voice roareth; He thundereth with the voice of his majesty; And he restraineth not the lightnings when his voice is heard.

Douay-Rheims Bible
After it a noise shall roar, he shall thunder with the voice of his majesty, and shall not be found out, when his voice shall be heard.

Darby Bible Translation
After it a voice roareth: he thundereth with the voice of his excellency, and holdeth not back the flashes when his voice is heard.

English Revised Version
After it a voice roareth; he thundereth with the voice of his majesty: and he stayeth them not when his voice is heard.

Webster's Bible Translation
After it a voice roareth: he thundereth with the voice of his excellence; and he will not stay them when his voice is heard.

World English Bible
After it a voice roars. He thunders with the voice of his majesty. He doesn't hold back anything when his voice is heard.

Young's Literal Translation
After it roar doth a voice -- He thundereth with the voice of His excellency, And He doth not hold them back, When His voice is heard.
Study Bible
Elihu Proclaims God's Majesty
3He unleashes His lightning beneath the whole sky and sends it to the ends of the earth. 4Then there comes a roaring sound; He thunders with His majestic voice. He does not restrain the lightning when His voice resounds. 5God thunders wondrously with His voice; He does great things we cannot comprehend.…
Cross References
Job 26:14
Indeed, these are but the fringes of His ways; how faint is the whisper we hear of Him! Who then can understand the thunder of His power?"

Job 37:2
Listen closely to the thunder of His voice and the rumbling that comes from His mouth.

Job 37:3
He unleashes His lightning beneath the whole sky and sends it to the ends of the earth.

Job 37:5
God thunders wondrously with His voice; He does great things we cannot comprehend.

Psalm 29:3
The voice of the LORD is over the waters; the God of glory thunders; the LORD is heard over many waters.

Treasury of Scripture

After it a voice roars: he thunders with the voice of his excellency; and he will not stay them when his voice is heard.

a voice

Psalm 29:3-9 The voice of the LORD is on the waters: the God of glory thunders: …

Psalm 68:33 To him that rides on the heavens of heavens, which were of old; see, …

the voice

Exodus 15:7,8 And in the greatness of your excellency you have overthrown them …

Deuteronomy 33:26 There is none like to the God of Jeshurun, who rides on the heaven …

he will

Job 36:27-33 For he makes small the drops of water: they pour down rain according …

(4) After it a voice roareth--i.e., the thunderclap which follows the lightning-flash.

And he stayeth them not (or will not stay them) when his voice is heard.--What does this mean? We understand it, "Yet none can track them (i.e., the thunder and the lightning) when His voice is heard. They travel in paths which none can explore. Vivid as the lightning is, who shall pursue its course?"

Verse 4. - After it a voice roareth. After the lightning-flash has been seen, the thunderclap comes. In their origin they are simultaneous; but, as light travels faster than sound, unless we are close to the flash, then is an interval, the thunder following on the lightning. He thundereth with the voice of his excellency (see the comment on ver. 2). And he will not stay them when his voice is heard. The words are plain, but the meaning is obscure. What will not God stay? His lightnings? His thunderings? His rain? His hail? There is no obvious antecedent. And in what sense will he not "stay" them? Some explain, "He will not slacken their speed; "others, "He will not cause them to Cease." After it a voice roareth,.... After the lightning comes a violent crack or clap of thunder, which is like the roaring of a lion. Such is the order of thunder and lightning, according to our sense and apprehension of them; otherwise in nature they are together: but the reasons given why the lightning is seen before, and so the same in the flash and report of a gun, are, because the sense of seeing is quicker than the sense of hearing (y); and the motion of light is quicker than that of sound; which latter is the truest reason (z). The roaring voice of thunder may be an emblem of the thunder of the law; its dreadful volleys of curses, vengeance, and wrath on the breakers of it, as delivered out by Boanergeses, sons of thunder, Mark 3:17, or the loud proclamation of the Gospel, made by the ministers of it; and the alarming awakening sound of the word, when attended with the Spirit and power of God, to sinners asleep and dead in trespasses and sins; upon which they awake, hear, and live;

he thundereth with the voice of his excellency: that is, God thunders with such a voice, an excellent and majestic one; for his voice of thunder is full of majesty, Psalm 29:4. So is the voice of Christ in the Gospel; he spake when on earth as one having authority, and he comes forth and appears in it now with majesty and glory; and speaks in it of the excellent things which he has done, of the excellent righteousness he has wrought out, of the excellent sacrifice he has offered up, and of the excellent salvation he is the author of;

and he will not stay them when his voice is heard; either the thunder and the lightning, as some; which he does not long defer after he has given out the decree concerning them, the order and disposition for them: or rather the rain and hail; these are not stayed, but quickly follow the flash of lightning and clap of thunder: "for when he utters his voice of thunder, there is a multitude of waters in the heavens"; and these quickly come down and are not stopped, Jeremiah 10:13. The word for "stay" signifies "to supplant", or "act deceitfully"; the name of Jacob is derived from this root, because he supplanted his brother, Genesis 25:26; and so it may be rendered here, "he will not supplant", or "deceive them (a), when his voice is heard": that is, either he does not subvert them, the heavens and earth, but preserves them; though he makes them to tremble with his voice of thunder (b): or he does not act the part of a secret, subtle, and deceitful enemy, when he thunders; but shows himself openly as a King, executing his decrees with authority (c): or rather he deceives none with his voice; none can mistake it; all know it to be the voice of thunder when it is heard: so Christ's sheep know his voice in the Gospel, and cannot be deceived; the voice of a stranger they will not follow, John 10:4.

(y) Senec. Nat. Quaest. l. 2. c. 12. so Aristot. Meteorolog. l. 2. c. 9. (z) The noise is commonly about seven or eight seconds after the flash, that is, about half a quarter of a minute; but sometimes much sooner, in a second or two, or less than so, and almost immediately upon the flash: this is when the explosion is very near us. Philosoph. Transact. abridged, vol. 2. p. 183. see vol. 4. p. 398. (a) "non supplantabit ea", Munster; so Schmidt, Michaelis, Gussetius, p. 633. (b) So Schmidt. (c) So Gussetius. 4. The thunderclap follows at an interval after the flash.

stay them—He will not hold back the lightnings (Job 37:3), when the thunder is heard [Maurer]. Rather, take "them" as the usual concomitants of thunder, namely, rain and hail [Umbreit] (Job 40:9).37:1-13 The changes of the weather are the subject of a great deal of our thoughts and common talk; but how seldom do we think and speak of these things, as Elihu, with a regard to God, the director of them! We must notice the glory of God, not only in the thunder and lightning, but in the more common and less awful changes of the weather; as the snow and rain. Nature directs all creatures to shelter themselves from a storm; and shall man only be unprovided with a refuge? Oh that men would listen to the voice of God, who in many ways warns them to flee from the wrath to come; and invites them to accept his salvation, and to be happy. The ill opinion which men entertain of the Divine direction, peculiarly appears in their murmurs about the weather, though the whole result of the year proves the folly of their complaints. Believers should avoid this; no days are bad as God makes them, though we make many bad by our sins.
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OT Poetry: Job 37:4 After it a voice roars (Jb) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools
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