Isaiah 37:2–39:8; 2 Kings 18–20:1; 2 Chronicles 29–32:1

And he sent Eliakim, who was over the household, and Shebna the secretary, and the senior priests, covered with sackcloth, to the prophet eIsaiah the son of Amoz. They said to him, Thus says Hezekiah, This day is a fday of distress, of rebuke, and of disgrace; gchildren have come to the point of birth, and there is no strength to bring them forth. hIt may be that the Lord your God will hear the words of the Rabshakeh, whom his master the king of Assyria has sent to mock the living God, and will rebuke the words that the Lord your God has heard; therefore lift up your prayer for ithe remnant that is left.

When the servants of King Hezekiah came to Isaiah, Isaiah said to them, Say to your master, Thus says the Lord: Do not be afraid because of the words that you have heard, with which the young men of the king of Assyria have reviled me. Behold, jI will put a spirit in him, so that khe shall hear a rumor and return to his own land, and lI will make him fall by the sword in his own land.

The Rabshakeh returned, and found the king of Assyria fighting against mLibnah, for he had heard that the king had left mLachish. Now the king heard concerning Tirhakah king of nCush,1 He has set out to fight against you. And when he heard it, he sent messengers to Hezekiah, saying, 10 Thus shall you speak to Hezekiah king of Judah: oDo not let your God in whom you trust deceive you by promising that Jerusalem will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria. 11 Behold, you have heard what the kings of Assyria have done to all lands, devoting them to destruction. And shall you be delivered? 12 pHave the gods of the nations delivered them, the nations that my fathers destroyed, qGozan, rHaran, Rezeph, and the people of Eden who were in Telassar? 13 pWhere is the king of Hamath, the king of Arpad, the king of the city of Sepharvaim, the king of Hena, or the king of Ivvah?

Hezekiah's Prayer for Deliverance

14 Hezekiah received the letter from the hand of the messengers, and read it; and Hezekiah went up to the house of the Lord, and spread it before the Lord. 15 And Hezekiah prayed to the Lord: 16 O Lord of hosts, God of Israel, senthroned above the cherubim, you are the God, you alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth; tyou have made heaven and earth. 17 uIncline your ear, O Lord, and hear; open your eyes, O Lord, and see; and hear vall the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent to mock the living God. 18 Truly, O Lord, wthe kings of Assyria have laid waste all the nations and their lands, 19 and have cast their gods into the fire. For they were no gods, but the work of men's hands, wood and stone. Therefore they were destroyed. 20 So now, O Lord our God, save us from his hand, that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that you alone are the Lord.

Sennacherib's Fall

21 Then Isaiah the son of Amoz sent to Hezekiah, saying, Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: Because you have prayed to me concerning Sennacherib king of Assyria, 22 this is the word that the Lord has spoken concerning him:

She despises you, she scorns you

xthe virgin daughter of Zion;

she wags her head behind you

the daughter of Jerusalem.

23  Whom have you mocked and reviled?

Against whom have you raised your voice

and lifted your eyes to the heights?

Against ythe Holy One of Israel!

24  By your servants you have mocked the Lord,

and you have said, zWith my many chariots

I have gone up the heights of the mountains,

to the far recesses of Lebanon,

ato cut down its tallest cedars,

its choicest cypresses,

to come to its remotest height,

its most fruitful forest.

25  I dug wells

and drank waters,

to dry up with the sole of my foot

all bthe streams cof Egypt.

26  dHave you not heard

that I determined it long ago?

I planned from days of old

what now I bring to pass,

that you should make fortified cities

crash into heaps of ruins,

27  while their inhabitants, shorn of strength,

are dismayed and confounded,

and have become like plants of the field

and like tender grass,

like grass on the housetops,

blighted2 before it is grown.

28  I know your sitting down

and your going out and coming in,

and your raging against me.

29  eBecause you have raged against me

and your complacency has come to my ears,

I will put my hook in your nose

and my bit in your mouth,

and fI will turn you back on the way

by which you came.

30 And this shall be the sign for you: this year you shall eat what grows of itself, and in the second year what springs from that. Then in the third year sow and reap, and plant vineyards, and eat their fruit. 31 And the surviving remnant of the house of Judah gshall again take root downward and bear fruit upward. 32 hFor out of Jerusalem shall go a remnant, and out of Mount Zion a band of survivors. iThe zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.

33 Therefore thus says the Lord concerning the king of Assyria: He shall not come into this city or shoot an arrow there or come before it with a shield or jcast up a siege mound against it. 34 By the way that he came, by the same he shall return, and he shall not come into this city, declares the Lord. 35 kFor I will defend this city to save it, for my own sake and for lthe sake of my servant David.

36 mAnd the angel of the Lord went out and struck down 185,000 in the camp of the Assyrians. And when people arose early in the morning, behold, these were all dead bodies. 37 Then Sennacherib king of Assyria departed and returned home and lived at nNineveh. 38 And as he was worshiping in the house of Nisroch his god, Adrammelech and Sharezer, his sons, struck him down with the sword. And after they escaped into the land of oArarat, pEsarhaddon his son reigned in his place.

Hezekiah's Sickness and Recovery

38 qIn those days Hezekiah became rsick and was at the point of death. And sIsaiah the prophet the son of Amoz came to him, and said to him, Thus says the Lord: Set your house in order, for you shall die, you shall not recover.3 Then Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the Lord, and said, Please, O Lord, remember how tI have walked before you in faithfulness and with a whole heart, and have done what is good in your sight. And Hezekiah wept bitterly.

Then the word of the Lord came to Isaiah: Go and say to Hezekiah, Thus says the Lord, the God of David your father: I have heard your prayer; I have seen your tears. Behold, I will add ufifteen years to your life.4 vI will deliver you and this city out of the hand of the king of Assyria, and will defend this city.

This shall be the sign to you from the Lord, that the Lord will do this thing that he has promised: wBehold, I will make the shadow cast by the declining sun on the dial of Ahaz turn back ten steps. So the sun turned back on the dial the ten steps by which it had declined.5

A writing of Hezekiah king of Judah, after he had been sick and had recovered from his sickness:

10  I said, xIn the middle6 of my days

I must depart;

I am consigned to the gates of Sheol

for the rest of my years.

11  I said, I shall not see the Lord,

the Lord yin the land of the living;

I shall look on man no more

among the inhabitants of the world.

12  My dwelling is plucked up and removed from me

zlike a shepherd's tent;

alike a weaver bI have rolled up my life;

che cuts me off from the loom;

dfrom day to night you bring me to an end;

13  eI calmed myself7 until morning;

like a lion fhe breaks all my bones;

from day to night you bring me to an end.

14  Like ga swallow or a crane I chirp;

hI moan like a dove.

iMy eyes are weary with looking upward.

O Lord, I am oppressed; jbe my pledge of safety!

15  What shall I say? For he has spoken to me,

and he himself has done it.

kI walk slowly all my years

because of the bitterness of my soul.

16  lO Lord, by these things men live,

and in all these is the life of my spirit.

Oh restore me to health and make me live!

17  mBehold, it was for my welfare

that I had great bitterness;

nbut in love you have delivered my life

from the pit of destruction,

nfor you have cast all my sins

behind your back.

18  oFor Sheol does not thank you;

death does not praise you;

those who go down to the pit do not hope

for your faithfulness.

19  The living, the living, he thanks you,

as I do this day;

pthe father makes known to the children

your faithfulness.

20  The Lord will save me,

and we will play my music on stringed instruments

all the days of our lives,

qat the house of the Lord.

21 rNow Isaiah had said, Let them take a cake of figs and apply it to the boil, that he may recover. 22 Hezekiah also had said, What is the sign that I shall go up to the house of the Lord?

Envoys from Babylon

39 sAt that time Merodach-baladan the son of Baladan, king of Babylon, tsent envoys with letters and a present to Hezekiah, for he heard that he had been sick and had recovered. And Hezekiah welcomed them gladly. And he showed them his treasure house, uthe silver, the gold, the spices, the precious oil, his whole armory, all that was found in his storehouses. vThere was nothing in his house or in all his realm that Hezekiah did not show them. Then Isaiah the prophet came to King Hezekiah, and said to him, What did these men say? And from where did they come to you? Hezekiah said, They have come to me from a far country, from Babylon. He said, What have they seen in your house? Hezekiah answered, They have seen all that is in my house. There is nothing in my storehouses that I did not show them.

Then Isaiah said to Hezekiah, Hear the word of the Lord of hosts: wBehold, the days are coming, when all that is in your house, and that which your fathers have stored up till this day, shall be carried to Babylon. Nothing shall be left, says the Lord. xAnd some of your own sons, who will come from you, whom you will father, shall be taken away, and they shall be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon. Then Hezekiah said to Isaiah, The word of the Lord that you have spoken is good. For he thought, yThere will be peace and security in my days.


Hezekiah Reigns in Judah

18 hIn the third year of Hoshea son of Elah, king of Israel, iHezekiah the son of Ahaz, king of Judah, began to reign. He was jtwenty-five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned twenty-nine years in Jerusalem. His mother's name was kAbi the daughter of Zechariah. lAnd he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, according to all that David his father had done. mHe removed the high places and broke the npillars and cut down othe Asherah. And he broke in pieces pthe bronze serpent that Moses had made, for until those days the people of Israel had made offerings to it (it was called Nehushtan).1 qHe trusted in the Lord, the God of Israel, rso that there was none like him among all the kings of Judah after him, nor among those who were before him. sFor he held fast to the Lord. He did not depart from following him, but kept the commandments that the Lord commanded Moses. tAnd the Lord was with him; wherever he went out, uhe prospered. He rebelled against the king of Assyria and would not serve him. vHe struck down the Philistines as far as Gaza and its territory, wfrom watchtower to fortified city.

In the fourth year of King Hezekiah, which was the seventh year of Hoshea son of Elah, king of Israel, xShalmaneser king of Assyria came up against Samaria and besieged it, 10 and at the end of three years he took it. In the sixth year of Hezekiah, which was the ninth year of Hoshea king of Israel, Samaria was taken. 11 The king of Assyria carried the Israelites away to Assyria and put them in yHalah, and on the yHabor, ythe river of Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes, 12 because they did not obey the voice of the Lord their God but transgressed his covenant, even all that Moses the servant of the Lord commanded. They neither listened nor obeyed.

Sennacherib Attacks Judah

13 zIn the fourteenth year of King Hezekiah, Sennacherib king of Assyria came up against all the fortified cities of Judah and took them. 14 And Hezekiah king of Judah sent to the king of Assyria at Lachish, saying, I have done wrong; withdraw from me. Whatever you impose on me I will bear. aAnd the king of Assyria required of Hezekiah king of Judah three hundred talents2 of silver and thirty talents of gold. 15 And Hezekiah bgave him all the silver that was found in the house of the Lord and in the treasuries of the king's house. 16 At that time Hezekiah stripped the gold from the doors of the temple of the Lord and from the doorposts that Hezekiah king of Judah had overlaid and gave it to the king of Assyria. 17 And the king of Assyria sent the cTartan, the Rab-saris, and the Rabshakeh with a great army from Lachish to King Hezekiah at Jerusalem. And they went up and came to Jerusalem. When they arrived, they came and stood by dthe conduit of the upper pool, which is on the highway to the Washer's Field. 18 And when they called for the king, there came out to them eEliakim the son of Hilkiah, who was over the household, and fShebnah the secretary, and Joah the son of Asaph, the recorder.

19 And the Rabshakeh said to them, Say to Hezekiah, Thus says the great king, the king of Assyria: On what do you rest this trust of yours? 20 Do you think that mere words are strategy and power for war? In whom do you now trust, that you have rebelled against me? 21 Behold, you are trusting now in Egypt, that broken reed of ga staff, which will pierce the hand of any man who leans on it. Such is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who trust in him. 22 But if you say to me, We trust in the Lord our God, is it not he hwhose high places and altars Hezekiah has removed, saying to Judah and to Jerusalem, You shall worship before this altar in Jerusalem? 23 Come now, make a wager with my master the king of Assyria: I will give you two thousand horses, if you are able on your part to set riders on them. 24 How then can you repulse a single captain among the least of my master's servants, when you trust in Egypt for chariots and for horsemen? 25 Moreover, is it without the Lord that I have come up against this place to destroy it? The Lord said to me, Go up against this land and destroy it.

26 Then eEliakim the son of Hilkiah, and fShebnah, and Joah, said to the Rabshakeh, Please speak to your servants in iAramaic, for we understand it. Do not speak to us in the language of Judah within the hearing of the people who are on the wall. 27 But the Rabshakeh said to them, Has my master sent me to speak these words to your master and to you, and not to the men sitting on the wall, who are doomed with you to eat their own dung and to drink their own urine?

28 Then the Rabshakeh stood and called out in a loud voice in the language of Judah: Hear the word of the great king, the king of Assyria! 29 Thus says the king: Do not let Hezekiah deceive you, for he will not be able to deliver you out of my3 hand. 30 Do not let Hezekiah make you trust in the Lord by saying, The Lord will surely deliver us, and this city will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria. 31 Do not listen to Hezekiah, for thus says the king of Assyria: Make your peace with me4 and come out to me. Then jeach one of you will eat of his own vine, and each one of his own fig tree, and each one of you will drink the water of his own cistern, 32 until I come and take you away to a land like your own land, ka land of grain and wine, a land of bread and vineyards, a land of olive trees and lhoney, that you may live, and not die. And do not listen to Hezekiah when he misleads you by saying, The Lord will deliver us. 33 mHas any of the gods of the nations ever delivered his land out of the hand of the king of Assyria? 34 nWhere are the gods of oHamath and pArpad? Where are the gods of Sepharvaim, Hena, and qIvvah? Have they delivered Samaria out of my hand? 35 Who among all the gods of the lands have delivered their lands out of my hand, rthat the Lord should deliver Jerusalem out of my hand?

36 But the people were silent and answered him not a word, for the king's command was, Do not answer him. 37 Then sEliakim the son of Hilkiah, who was over the household, and Shebna the secretary, and Joah the son of Asaph, the recorder, came to Hezekiah twith their clothes torn and told him the words of the Rabshakeh.

Isaiah Reassures Hezekiah

19 uAs soon as King Hezekiah heard it, the tore his clothes and vcovered himself with sackcloth and went into the house of the Lord. And he sent Eliakim, who was over the household, and Shebna the secretary, and the senior priests, vcovered with sackcloth, to the prophet Isaiah the son of Amoz. They said to him, Thus says Hezekiah, This day is a day of distress, of rebuke, and of disgrace; children have come to the point of birth, and there is no strength to bring them forth. wIt may be that the Lord your God heard all the words of the Rabshakeh, whom his master the king of Assyria has sent xto mock the living God, and will rebuke the words that the Lord your God has heard; therefore lift up your prayer for ythe remnant that is left. When the servants of King Hezekiah came to Isaiah, Isaiah said to them, Say to your master, Thus says the Lord: Do not be afraid because of the words that you have heard, with which zthe servants of the king of Assyria have areviled me. Behold, I will put a spirit in him, so that bhe shall hear a rumor and return to his own land, and I will make him cfall by the sword in his own land.

Sennacherib Defies the Lord

The Rabshakeh returned, and found the king of Assyria fighting against dLibnah, for he heard that the king had left eLachish. fNow the king heard concerning Tirhakah king of Cush, Behold, he has set out to fight against you. So he sent messengers again to Hezekiah, saying, 10 Thus shall you speak to Hezekiah king of Judah: Do not let your God gin whom you trust deceive you by promising that hJerusalem will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria. 11 Behold, you have heard what the kings of Assyria have done to all lands, devoting them to destruction. And shall you be delivered? 12 iHave the gods of the nations delivered them, the nations that my fathers destroyed, jGozan, kHaran, Rezeph, and the people of lEden who were in Telassar? 13 mWhere is the king of Hamath, the king of Arpad, the king of the city of Sepharvaim, the king of Hena, or the king of Ivvah?

Hezekiah's Prayer

14 Hezekiah received nthe letter from the hand of the messengers and read it; and Hezekiah went up to the house of the Lord and spread it before the Lord. 15 And Hezekiah prayed before the Lord and said: O Lord, the God of Israel, oenthroned above the cherubim, pyou are the God, you alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth; you have made heaven and earth. 16 qIncline your ear, O Lord, and hear; ropen your eyes, O Lord, and see; and hear the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent sto mock the living God. 17 Truly, O Lord, the kings of Assyria have laid waste the nations and their lands 18 and have cast their gods into the fire, for they were not gods, tbut the work of men's hands, wood and stone. Therefore they were destroyed. 19 So now, O Lord our God, save us, please, from his hand, uthat all the kingdoms of the earth may know that pyou, O Lord, are God alone.

Isaiah Prophesies Sennacherib's Fall

20 Then Isaiah the son of Amoz sent to Hezekiah, saying, Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: Your prayer to me about Sennacherib king of Assyria vI have heard. 21 This is the word that the Lord has spoken concerning him:

She despises you, she scorns you

wthe virgin daughter of Zion;

she xwags her head behind you

the daughter of Jerusalem.

22  Whom have you ymocked and zreviled?

Against whom have you raised your voice

and lifted your eyes to the heights?

Against athe Holy One of Israel!

23  bBy your messengers you have mocked the Lord,

and you have said, cWith my many chariots

I have gone up the heights of the mountains,

to the far recesses of dLebanon;

I felled its tallest cedars,

its choicest cypresses;

I entered its farthest lodging place,

its most efruitful forest.

24  I dug wells

and drank foreign waters,

and I dried up with the sole of my foot

all the streams fof Egypt.

25  Have you not heard

that gI determined it long ago?

I planned from days of old

what hnow I bring to pass,

that you should turn fortified cities

into heaps of ruins,

26  while their inhabitants, shorn of strength,

are dismayed and confounded,

and have become ilike plants of the field

and like tender grass,

like grass on the housetops,

blighted before it is grown.

27  But I know your sitting down

jand your going out and coming in,

and your raging against me.

28  Because you have raged against me

and your complacency has come into my ears,

I will kput my hook in your nose

and my bit in your mouth,

and lI will turn you back on the way

by which you came.

29 And this shall be mthe sign for you: this year eat what grows of itself, and in the second year what springs of the same. Then in the third year sow and reap and plant vineyards, and eat their fruit. 30 nAnd the surviving remnant of the house of Judah shall again take root downward and bear fruit upward. 31 For out of Jerusalem shall go a remnant, and out of Mount Zion oa band of survivors. pThe zeal of the Lord will do this.

32 Therefore thus says the Lord concerning the king of Assyria: He shall not come into this city or shoot an arrow there, or come before it with a shield or qcast up a siege mound against it. 33 rBy the way that he came, by the same he shall return, and he shall not come into this city, declares the Lord. 34 sFor I will defend this city to save it, for my own sake tand for the sake of my servant David.

35 And that night uthe angel of the Lord went out and struck down 185,000 in the camp of the Assyrians. And when people arose early in the morning, behold, these were all dead bodies. 36 Then Sennacherib king of Assyria departed and went home and lived at vNineveh. 37 And as he was worshiping in the house of Nisroch his god, wAdrammelech and Sharezer, his sons, struck him down with the sword and escaped into the land of Ararat. And Esarhaddon his son reigned in his place.

Hezekiah's Illness and Recovery

20 xIn those days yHezekiah became sick and was at the point of death. And Isaiah the prophet the son of Amoz came to him and said to him, Thus says the Lord, zSet your house in order, for you shall die; you shall not recover.


Hezekiah Reigns in Judah

29 jHezekiah began to reign when he was twenty-five years old, and he reigned twenty-nine years in Jerusalem. His mother's name was Abijah1 the daughter of kZechariah. And he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, according to all that David his father had done.

Hezekiah Cleanses the Temple

In the first year of his reign, in the first month, he lopened the doors of the house of the Lord and repaired them. He brought in the priests and the Levites and assembled them in the square on the east and said to them, Hear me, Levites! Now mconsecrate yourselves, and consecrate the house of the Lord, the God of your fathers, and carry out the filth2 from the Holy Place. For our fathers have been unfaithful and have done what was evil in the sight of the Lord our God. They have forsaken him and nhave turned away their faces from the habitation of the Lord and turned their backs. They also oshut the doors of the vestibule and put out the lamps and have not burned incense or offered burnt offerings in the Holy Place to the God of Israel. Therefore pthe wrath of the Lord came on Judah and Jerusalem, and he has made them qan object of horror, of astonishment, rand of hissing, as you see with your own eyes. For behold, sour fathers have fallen by the sword, and our sons and our daughters and our wives are in captivity for this. 10 Now tit is in my heart uto make a covenant with the Lord, the God of Israel, in order that his fierce anger may turn away from us. 11 My sons, do not now be negligent, vfor the Lord has chosen you to stand in his presence, to minister to him and to be his ministers and make offerings to him.

12 Then the Levites arose, wMahath the son of Amasai, and Joel the son of Azariah, of the sons of xthe Kohathites; and of the sons of xMerari, Kish the son of Abdi, and Azariah the son of Jehallelel; and of the xGershonites, Joah the son of Zimmah, and Eden the son of Joah; 13 and of the sons of yElizaphan, Shimri and Jeuel; and of the sons of zAsaph, Zechariah and Mattaniah; 14 and of the sons of aHeman, Jehuel and Shimei; and of the sons of bJeduthun, Shemaiah and Uzziel. 15 They gathered their brothers and cconsecrated themselves and went in as the king had commanded, dby the words of the Lord, eto cleanse the house of the Lord. 16 The priests went into the inner part of the house of the Lord to cleanse it, and they brought out all the uncleanness that they found in the temple of the Lord into the court of the house of the Lord. And the Levites took it and carried it out to fthe brook Kidron. 17 They began to consecrate gon the first day of the first month, and on the eighth day of the month they came to the vestibule of the Lord. Then for eight days they consecrated the house of the Lord, and on the sixteenth day of the first month they finished. 18 Then they went in to Hezekiah the king and said, We have cleansed all the house of the Lord, the altar of burnt offering and all its utensils, and the table for the showbread and all its utensils. 19 All the utensils hthat King Ahaz discarded in his reign when he was faithless, we have made ready and consecrated, and behold, they are before the altar of the Lord.

Hezekiah Restores Temple Worship

20 Then Hezekiah the king rose early and gathered the officials of the city and went up to the house of the Lord. 21 And they brought seven bulls, seven rams, seven lambs, and seven male goats ifor a sin offering for the kingdom and for the sanctuary and for Judah. And he commanded the priests, the sons of Aaron, to offer them on the altar of the Lord. 22 So they slaughtered the bulls, and the priests received the blood jand threw it against the altar. And they slaughtered the rams, and their blood was thrown against the altar. And they slaughtered the lambs, and their blood was thrown against the altar. 23 Then the goats for the sin offering were brought to the king and the assembly, kand they laid their hands on them, 24 and the priests slaughtered them and made a sin offering with their blood on the altar, lto make atonement for all Israel. For the king commanded that the burnt offering and the sin offering should be made for all Israel.

25 mAnd he stationed the Levites in the house of the Lord with cymbals, harps, and lyres, naccording to the commandment of David and of Gad othe king's seer and of pNathan the prophet, for the commandment was from the Lord through his prophets. 26 The Levites stood with qthe instruments of David, rand the priests with the trumpets. 27 Then Hezekiah commanded that the burnt offering be offered on the altar. And when the burnt offering began, sthe song to the Lord began also, and the trumpets, accompanied by the instruments of David king of Israel. 28 The whole assembly worshiped, and the singers sang, and the trumpeters sounded. All this continued until the burnt offering was finished. 29 When the offering was finished, tthe king and all who were present with him bowed themselves and worshiped. 30 And Hezekiah the king and the officials commanded the Levites to sing praises to the Lord with the words of David and of Asaph the seer. And they sang praises with gladness, and they bowed down and worshiped.

31 Then Hezekiah said, uYou have now consecrated yourselves to3 the Lord. Come near; bring sacrifices and thank offerings to the house of the Lord. And the assembly brought sacrifices and thank offerings, and all who were vof a willing heart brought burnt offerings. 32 The number of the burnt offerings that the assembly brought was 70 bulls, 100 rams, and 200 lambs; all these were for a burnt offering to the Lord. 33 And the consecrated offerings were 600 bulls and 3,000 sheep. 34 But the priests were too few and could not flay all the burnt offerings, so until other priests had consecrated themselves, wtheir brothers the Levites helped them, until the work was finishedxfor the Levites were more upright in heart than the priests in consecrating themselves. 35 Besides the great number of burnt offerings, there was ythe fat of the peace offerings, and there were zthe drink offerings for the burnt offerings. Thus the service of the house of the Lord was restored. 36 And Hezekiah and all the people rejoiced because God had provided for the people, for the thing came about suddenly.

Passover Celebrated

30 Hezekiah sent to all Israel and Judah, and wrote letters also to Ephraim and Manasseh, that they should come to the house of the Lord at Jerusalem to keep the Passover to the Lord, the God of Israel. For the king and his princes and all the assembly in Jerusalem had taken counsel to keep the Passover ain the second month for they could not keep it bat that time cbecause the priests had not consecrated themselves in sufficient number, nor had the people assembled in Jerusalem and the plan seemed right to the king and all the assembly. So they decreed to make a proclamation throughout all Israel, dfrom Beersheba to Dan, that the people should come and keep the Passover to the Lord, the God of Israel, at Jerusalem, for they had not kept it as often as prescribed. eSo couriers went throughout all Israel and Judah with letters from the king and his princes, as the king had commanded, saying, O people of Israel, freturn to the Lord, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, that he may turn again to the remnant of you who have escaped from the hand of gthe kings of Assyria. hDo not be like your fathers and your brothers, who were faithless to the Lord God of their fathers, so that he made them a desolation, as you see. iDo not now be stiff-necked as your fathers were, but yield yourselves to the Lord and come to his sanctuary, which he has consecrated forever, and serve the Lord your God, jthat his fierce anger may turn away from you. For fif you return to the Lord, your brothers and your children kwill find compassion with their captors and return to this land. For lthe Lord your God is gracious and merciful and will not turn away his face from you, mif you return to him.

10 eSo the couriers went from city to city through the country of nEphraim and Manasseh, and as far as Zebulun, but othey laughed them to scorn and mocked them. 11 However, psome men of Asher, of Manasseh, and of Zebulun humbled themselves and came to Jerusalem. 12 The hand of God was also on Judah to give them one heart to do what the king and the princes commanded qby the word of the Lord.

13 And many people came together in Jerusalem to keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread rin the second month, a very great assembly. 14 They set to work and removed sthe altars that were in Jerusalem, and all the altars for burning incense they took away tand threw into the brook Kidron. 15 uAnd they slaughtered the Passover lamb on the fourteenth day of the second month. vAnd the priests and the Levites were ashamed, wso that they consecrated themselves and brought burnt offerings into the house of the Lord. 16 xThey took their accustomed posts according to the Law of Moses ythe man of God. The priests threw the blood that they received from the hand of the Levites. 17 For there were many in the assembly who had not consecrated themselves. Therefore the Levites had to slaughter the Passover lamb for everyone who was not clean, to consecrate it to the Lord. 18 For a majority of the people, zmany of them from Ephraim, Manasseh, Issachar, and Zebulun, had not cleansed themselves, yet they ate the Passover otherwise athan as prescribed. For Hezekiah had prayed for them, saying, May the good Lord pardon everyone 19 bwho sets his heart to seek God, the Lord, the God of his fathers, even though not according to the sanctuary's rules of cleanness.4 20 And the Lord heard Hezekiah and healed the people. 21 And the people of Israel who were present at Jerusalem kept cthe Feast of Unleavened Bread seven days with great gladness, and the Levites and the priests praised the Lord day by day, singing with all their might5 to the Lord. 22 And Hezekiah spoke dencouragingly to all the Levites who showed good skill in the service of the Lord. So they ate the food of the festival for seven days, sacrificing epeace offerings and giving thanks to the Lord, the God of their fathers.

23 Then the whole assembly agreed together to keep the feast ffor another seven days. So they kept it for another seven days with gladness. 24 For Hezekiah king of Judah ggave the assembly 1,000 bulls and 7,000 sheep for offerings, and the princes gave the assembly 1,000 bulls and 10,000 sheep. And the priests hconsecrated themselves in great numbers. 25 The whole assembly of Judah, and the priests and the Levites, iand the whole assembly that came out of Israel, and the sojourners who came out of the land of Israel, and the sojourners who lived in Judah, rejoiced. 26 So there was great joy in Jerusalem, for jsince the time of Solomon the son of David king of Israel there had been nothing like this in Jerusalem. 27 Then kthe priests and the Levites arose and lblessed the people, and their voice was heard, and their prayer came to mhis holy habitation in heaven.

Hezekiah Organizes the Priests

31 Now when all this was finished, all Israel who were present went out to the cities of Judah and nbroke in pieces the opillars and cut down pthe Asherim and broke down the high places and the altars throughout all Judah and Benjamin, and in Ephraim and Manasseh, until they had destroyed them all. Then all the people of Israel returned to their cities, every man to his possession.

And Hezekiah appointed qthe divisions of the priests and of the Levites, division by division, each according to his service, the priests and the Levites, rfor burnt offerings and peace offerings, to minister in the gates of the camp of the Lord and to give thanks and praise. sThe contribution of the king from his own possessions was for the burnt offerings: the burnt offerings of morning and evening, and the burnt offerings for the Sabbaths, the new moons, and the appointed feasts, tas it is written in the Law of the Lord. And he commanded the people who lived in Jerusalem to give uthe portion due to the priests and the Levites, that they might give themselves to the Law of the Lord. As soon as the command was spread abroad, the people of Israel gave in abundance the firstfruits of grain, wine, oil, honey, and of all the produce of the field. And they brought in abundantly vthe tithe of everything. And the people of Israel and Judah who lived in the cities of Judah also brought in the tithe of cattle and sheep, and wthe tithe of the dedicated things that had been dedicated to the Lord their God, and laid them in heaps. In the third month they began to pile up the heaps, and finished them in the seventh month. When Hezekiah and the princes came and saw the heaps, they blessed the Lord and his people Israel. And Hezekiah questioned the priests and the Levites about the heaps. 10 Azariah the chief priest, who was xof the house of Zadok, answered him, Since they began to bring the contributions into the house of the Lord, we have eaten and had enough and have plenty left, yfor the Lord has blessed his people, so that we have this large amount left.

11 Then Hezekiah commanded them to prepare zchambers in the house of the Lord, and they prepared them. 12 And they faithfully brought in the contributions, the tithes, and the dedicated things. The chief officer ain charge of them was Conaniah the Levite, with bShimei his brother as second, 13 bwhile Jehiel, Azaziah, Nahath, Asahel, Jerimoth, Jozabad, Eliel, Ismachiah, bMahath, and Benaiah were overseers assisting Conaniah and Shimei his brother, by the appointment of Hezekiah the king and xAzariah the chief officer of the house of God. 14 And Kore the son of Imnah the Levite, keeper of the east gate, was over the freewill offerings to God, to apportion the contribution reserved for the Lord and the most holy offerings. 15 bEden, Miniamin, Jeshua, Shemaiah, Amariah, and Shecaniah were faithfully assisting him in dthe cities of the priests, to distribute the portions to their brothers, old and young alike, by divisions, 16 except those enrolled by genealogy, males from three years old and upwardall who entered the house of the Lord eas the duty of each day requiredfor their service according to their offices, by their divisions. 17 The enrollment of the priests was according to their fathers' houses; that of the Levites ffrom twenty years old and upward was according to their offices, by their divisions. 18 They were enrolled with all their little children, their wives, their sons, and their daughters, the whole assembly, for they were faithful in keeping themselves holy. 19 And for the sons of Aaron, the priests, who were in the fields of common land belonging to their cities, there were men in the several cities who were gdesignated by name to distribute portions to every male among the priests and to everyone among the Levites who was enrolled.

20 Thus Hezekiah did throughout all Judah, hand he did what was good and right and faithful before the Lord his God. 21 And every work that he undertook in the service of the house of God and in accordance with the law and the commandments, seeking his God, he did with all his heart, and prospered.

Sennacherib Invades Judah

32 iAfter these things and these acts of faithfulness, Sennacherib king of Assyria came and invaded Judah and encamped against the fortified cities, thinking to win them for himself.