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Job 37:3-6

Context

37:3 Under the whole heaven he lets it go,

even his lightning to the far corners 1  of the earth.

37:4 After that a voice roars;

he thunders with an exalted voice,

and he does not hold back his lightning bolts 2 

when his voice is heard.

37:5 God thunders with his voice in marvelous ways; 3 

he does great things beyond our understanding. 4 

37:6 For to the snow he says, ‘Fall 5  to earth,’

and to the torrential rains, 6  ‘Pour down.’ 7 

1 tn Heb “wings,” and then figuratively for the extremities of garments, of land, etc.

2 tn The verb simply has the pronominal suffix, “them.” The idea must be that when God brings in all the thunderings he does not hold back his lightning bolts either.

3 tn The form is the Niphal participle, “wonders,” from the verb פָּלָא (pala’, “to be wonderful; to be extraordinary”). Some commentators suppress the repeated verb “thunders,” and supply other verbs like “shows” or “works,” enabling them to make “wonders” the object of the verb rather than leaving it in an adverbial role. But as H. H. Rowley (Job [NCBC], 236) notes, no change is needed, for one is not surprised to find repetition in Elihu’s words.

4 tn Heb “and we do not know.”

5 tn The verb actually means “be” (found here in the Aramaic form). The verb “to be” can mean “to happen, to fall, to come about.”

6 tn Heb “and [to the] shower of rain and shower of rains, be strong.” Many think the repetition grew up by variant readings; several Hebrew mss delete the second pair, and so many editors do. But the repetition may have served to stress the idea that the rains were heavy.

7 tn Heb “Be strong.”



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