Amplified Bible

Job 37

Elihu Says God has Authority over the Storm

1“Indeed, at His thundering my heart trembles
And leaps out of its place.

“Listen carefully to the thunder of His voice,
And the rumbling that goes out of His mouth!

“He lets it loose under the whole heaven,
And His lightning to the ends of the earth.

“After it, His voice roars;
He thunders with the voice of His majesty,
And He does not restrain His lightning [against His adversaries] when His voice is heard.

“God thunders marvelously with His voice;
He does great things which we cannot comprehend.

“For He says to the snow, ‘Fall on the earth’;
And [He speaks] to the showers and to the downpour [of His mighty rains], ‘Be strong.’

“God seals (brings to a standstill, stops) [by severe weather] the hand of every man,
That all men [whom He has made] may know His work [that is, His sovereign power and their subjection to it].

“Then the beast goes into its lair
And remains in its hiding place.

“Out of its chamber comes the storm,
And cold from the north wind.
“Ice is made by the breath of God,
And the expanse of the waters is frozen.
“He loads the thick cloud with moisture;
He disperses the cloud of His lightning.
“Its direction is turned around by His guidance,
That it may do whatever He commands it
On the face of the inhabited earth.
“Whether [it be] for correction, or for His earth [generally]
Or for [His] mercy and lovingkindness, He causes it to happen.

“Listen to this, Job;
Stand still and consider the wonders of God.
“Do you know how God establishes and commands them,
And makes the lightning of His [storm] cloud shine?
“Do you know about the layers of thick clouds [and how they are balanced and poised in the heavens],
The wonderful works of Him who is perfect in knowledge,
You whose garments are hot,
When He quiets the earth [in sultry summer] with the [oppressive] south wind?
“Can you, with Him, spread out the sky,
Strong as a molten mirror?
“Tell us [Job] what words [of man] shall we say to such a Being;
We cannot state our case because of darkness [that is, our ignorance in the presence of the unsearchable God].
“So shall it be told Him that I wish to speak?
Or should a man say that he would be swallowed up [and destroyed by God]?

“Now people cannot look at the light when it is bright in the skies [without being blinded],
When the wind has passed and cleared them.
“Out of the north comes golden splendor [and people can hardly look on it];
Around God is awesome splendor and majesty [far too glorious for man’s eyes].
“The Almighty—we cannot find Him;
He is exalted in power
And He will not do violence to [nor disregard] justice and abundant righteousness.
“Men therefore fear Him;
He does not regard nor respect any who are wise in heart [in their own understanding and conceit].”

The Message

Job 37

11-13 “Whenever this happens, my heart stops—
    I’m stunned, I can’t catch my breath.
Listen to it! Listen to his thunder,
    the rolling, rumbling thunder of his voice.
He lets loose his lightnings from horizon to horizon,
    lighting up the earth from pole to pole.
In their wake, the thunder echoes his voice,
    powerful and majestic.
He lets out all the stops, he holds nothing back.
    No one can mistake that voice—
His word thundering so wondrously,
    his mighty acts staggering our understanding.
He orders the snow, ‘Blanket the earth!’
    and the rain, ‘Soak the whole countryside!’
No one can escape the weather—it’s there.
    And no one can escape from God.
Wild animals take shelter,
    crawling into their dens,
When blizzards roar out of the north
    and freezing rain crusts the land.
It’s God’s breath that forms the ice,
    it’s God’s breath that turns lakes and rivers solid.
And yes, it’s God who fills clouds with rainwater
    and hurls lightning from them every which way.
He puts them through their paces—first this way, then that—
    commands them to do what he says all over the world.
Whether for discipline or grace or extravagant love,
    he makes sure they make their mark.

A Terrible Beauty Streams from God

14-18 “Job, are you listening? Have you noticed all this?
    Stop in your tracks! Take in God’s miracle-wonders!
Do you have any idea how God does it all,
    how he makes bright lightning from dark storms,
How he piles up the cumulus clouds—
    all these miracle-wonders of a perfect Mind?
Why, you don’t even know how to keep cool
    on a sweltering hot day,
So how could you even dream
    of making a dent in that hot-tin-roof sky?

19-22 “If you’re so smart, give us a lesson in how to address God.
    We’re in the dark and can’t figure it out.
Do you think I’m dumb enough to challenge God?
    Wouldn’t that just be asking for trouble?
No one in his right mind stares straight at the sun
    on a clear and cloudless day.
As gold comes from the northern mountains,
    so a terrible beauty streams from God.

23-24 “Mighty God! Far beyond our reach!
    Unsurpassable in power and justice!
    It’s unthinkable that he’d treat anyone unfairly.
So bow to him in deep reverence, one and all!
    If you’re wise, you’ll most certainly worship him.”