Hezekiah Seeks Isaiah’s Help
37 dAs soon as King Hezekiah heard it, he tore his clothes and covered himself with sackcloth and went into the house of the Lord. 2 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. 3 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. 4 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.’”
5 When the servants of King Hezekiah came to Isaiah, 6 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. 7 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.’”
8 The Rabshakeh returned, and found the king of Assyria fighting against mLibnah, for he had heard that the king had left mLachish. 9 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: o‘Do 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.”
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
26 d“‘Have 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.”1 2 Then Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the Lord, 3 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.
4 Then the word of the Lord came to Isaiah: 5 “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.2 6 vI will deliver you and this city out of the hand of the king of Assyria, and will defend this city.
7 “This shall be the sign to you from the Lord, that the Lord will do this thing that he has promised: 8 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.3
9 A writing of Hezekiah king of Judah, after he had been sick and had recovered from his sickness:
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;
che cuts me off from the loom;
dfrom day to night you bring me to an end;
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
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?”