Psalm 147:16
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
He spreads the snow like wool and scatters the frost like ashes.

New Living Translation
He sends the snow like white wool; he scatters frost upon the ground like ashes.

English Standard Version
He gives snow like wool; he scatters frost like ashes.

New American Standard Bible
He gives snow like wool; He scatters the frost like ashes.

King James Bible
He giveth snow like wool: he scattereth the hoarfrost like ashes.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
He spreads snow like wool; He scatters frost like ashes;

International Standard Version
He supplies snow like wool, scattering frost like ashes.

NET Bible
He sends the snow that is white like wool; he spreads the frost that is white like ashes.

New Heart English Bible
He gives snow like wool, and scatters frost like ashes.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
He gives snow like wool and he scatters frost like ashes.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
He is the one who sends snow like wool and scatters frost like ashes.

JPS Tanakh 1917
He giveth snow like wool; He scattereth the hoar-frost like ashes.

New American Standard 1977
He gives snow like wool;
            He scatters the frost like ashes.

Jubilee Bible 2000
He who gives snow like wool scatters the hoarfrost like ashes.

King James 2000 Bible
He gives snow like wool: he scatters the frost like ashes.

American King James Version
He gives snow like wool: he scatters the hoarfrost like ashes.

American Standard Version
He giveth snow like wool; He scattereth the hoar-frost like ashes.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Who giveth snow like wool: scattereth mists like ashes.

Darby Bible Translation
He giveth snow like wool, scattereth the hoar frost like ashes;

English Revised Version
He giveth snow like wool; he scattereth the hoar frost like ashes.

Webster's Bible Translation
He giveth snow like wool: he scattereth the hoar-frost like ashes.

World English Bible
He gives snow like wool, and scatters frost like ashes.

Young's Literal Translation
Who is giving snow like wool, Hoar-frost as ashes He scattereth.
Study Bible
It is Good to Sing Praises to Our God
15He sends forth His command to the earth; His word runs very swiftly. 16He gives snow like wool; He scatters the frost like ashes. 17He casts forth His ice as fragments; Who can stand before His cold?…
Cross References
Exodus 16:14
When the layer of dew evaporated, behold, on the surface of the wilderness there was a fine flake-like thing, fine as the frost on the ground.

Job 37:6
"For to the snow He says, 'Fall on the earth,' And to the downpour and the rain, 'Be strong.'

Job 38:29
"From whose womb has come the ice? And the frost of heaven, who has given it birth?

Psalm 74:17
You have established all the boundaries of the earth; You have made summer and winter.

Psalm 148:8
Fire and hail, snow and clouds; Stormy wind, fulfilling His word;
Treasury of Scripture

He gives snow like wool: he scatters the hoarfrost like ashes.

giveth

Psalm 148:8 Fire, and hail; snow, and vapors; stormy wind fulfilling his word:

Job 37:6 For he said to the snow, Be you on the earth; likewise to the small …

Isaiah 55:10 For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, and returns …

scattereth

Job 37:9,10 Out of the south comes the whirlwind: and cold out of the north…

Job 38:29 Out of whose womb came the ice? and the hoary frost of heaven, who …

(16) Like wool.--Both in whiteness and fleecy texture. "The snow falls in large flakes, equal in size to a walnut, and has more resemblance to locks of wool than it has in our country" (Niven, Biblical Antiq., p. 21).

"A spice quam densum tacitarum vellus aquarum Defluat.

MART., Ep. iv. 3.

Verse 16. - He giveth snow like wool. The loveliness of new-fallen snow has evidently been felt by the psalmist, to whom it has seemed like a spotless robe of whitest wool spread upon the earth. Snow, though rare in Palestine, does occasionally fall, and is said to "cover the streets of Jerusalem two winters out of three. It generally comes in small quantities; but there are sometimes very snowy winters." In 1879, for instance, snow lay in Jerusalem to a depth of seventeen inches (Geikic, 'The Holy Land and the Bible,' vol. 2. p. 58). He scattereth the hoar-frost like ashes. The metaphor is less appropriate, and was selected, probably, on account of the near resemblance of the two words, kephor and kaepher. He giveth snow like wool,.... For colour as white as wool; so the Targum and Kimchi: and for the manner of its falling, lightly and gently as a lock of wool; which for its thinness and fineness it also resembles. Hence the ancients used to call snow , "woolly water" (t); and Martial (u) gives it the name of "densum veilus aquarum", "a thick fleece of waters": so another poet (w) calls clouds flying fleeces of wool, to which they sometimes seem like; Pliny (x) calls it the from of the celestial waters. And it is like wool for its usefulness to the earth; for as wool covers the sheep, and clothes made of it cover men, and keep them warm; so snow filling upon the earth covers it and keeps it warm, and secures the wheat and other fruits of the earth from the injuries of the cold: and this lies among the treasures of the Lord, and he brings it out from thence, and commands it to be on the earth; and it is an useful gift of his providence, for which his name is to be praised; see Job 37:6. The Jews have a saying, as Arama observes, that one day of snow is better than five of rain. In the third year of Valens and Valentinianus, with the Atrebates (a people in the Netherlands), real wool fell from the clouds, mixed with rain (y). Several blessings of grace are signified by this figure; as pardon of sin, the justifying righteousness of Christ, and the efficacy of the word of God, Psalm 51:7;

he scattereth the hoar frost like ashes; which is the dew congealed by the intense cold of the air in the night season (z): this for its colour looks like ashes, and for its infinite number of particles may be compared to them; which are spread here and there, and everywhere; over gardens, fields, lands, herbs, plants, and trees, as if they were strewed with ashes. And to hot ashes it may be compared, because of its burning nature, shrivelling up leaves, herbs, and plants, as if burnt; hence called "pruina" in the Latin tongue (a). The manna is compared to this for its smallness, Exodus 16:14; which was typical of Christ, the hidden manna, and of the ministry of the Gospel; little, mean, and contemptible, in the eyes of carnal men; torturing and tormenting to them, as the fire that came out of the mouths of the witnesses; and is the savour of death unto death to some, while it ii the savour of life unto life to others.

(t) Eustathius in Dionys. Perieget. p. 91. (u) Epigram. l. 4. Ephesians 3. (w) Aristoph. Nubes, p. 146. (x) Nat. Hist. l. 17. c. 2.((y) Orosii Hist. l. 7. c. 32. p. 131. (z) lsidor. Origin. l. 13. c. 10. (a) "Frigora nec tantum cana concreta pruina", Virgil. Georgic. l. 2. v. 376. 147:12-20 The church, like Jerusalem of old, built up and preserved by the wisdom, power, and goodness of God, is exhorted to praise him for all the benefits and blessings vouchsafed to her; and these are represented by his favours in the course of nature. The thawing word may represent the gospel of Christ, and the thawing wind the Spirit of Christ; for the Spirit is compared to the wind, Joh 3:8. Converting grace softens the heart that was hard frozen, and melts it into tears of repentance, and makes good reflections to flow, which before were chilled and stopped up. The change which the thaw makes is very evident, yet how it is done no one can say. Such is the change wrought in the conversion of a soul, when God's word and Spirit are sent to melt it and restore it to itself.
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