God Is My Strength and Portion Forever
A Psalm of bAsaph.
73 Truly God is good to cIsrael,
to those who are dpure in heart.
2 But as for me, my feet had almost stumbled,
my steps had nearly slipped.
when I saw the gprosperity of the wicked.
4 For they have no pangs until death;
their bodies are fat and sleek.
5 They are not in trouble as others are;
they are not hstricken like the rest of mankind.
6 Therefore pride is itheir necklace;
violence covers them as ja garment.
7 Their keyes swell out through fatness;
their hearts overflow with follies.
8 They scoff and lspeak with malice;
loftily they threaten oppression.
9 They set their mouths against the heavens,
and their tongue struts through the earth.
10 Therefore his people turn back to them,
11 And they say, n“How can God know?
Is there knowledge in the Most High?”
12 Behold, these are the wicked;
always at ease, they oincrease in riches.
13 All in vain have I pkept my heart clean
and qwashed my hands in innocence.
14 For all the day long I have been hstricken
15 If I had said, “I will speak thus,”
I would have betrayed tthe generation of your children.
16 But when I thought how to understand this,
it seemed to me ua wearisome task,
17 until I went into vthe sanctuary of God;
then I discerned their wend.
18 Truly you set them in xslippery places;
you make them fall to ruin.
19 How they are destroyed yin a moment,
swept away utterly by zterrors!
20 Like aa dream when one awakes,
O Lord, when byou rouse yourself, you despise them as phantoms.
21 When my soul was embittered,
when I was pricked in heart,
22 I was cbrutish and ignorant;
I was like da beast toward you.
23 Nevertheless, I am continually with you;
you ehold my right hand.
24 You fguide me with your counsel,
and afterward you will greceive me to glory.
25 hWhom have I in heaven but you?
And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you.
26 iMy flesh and my heart may fail,
27 For behold, those who are mfar from you shall perish;
you put an end to everyone who is nunfaithful to you.
28 But for me it is good to obe near God;
I have made the Lord God my prefuge,
that I may qtell of all your works.
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. 2 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. 3 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. 4 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.” 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 zthe servants of the king of Assyria have areviled me. 7 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
8 The Rabshakeh returned, and found the king of Assyria fighting against dLibnah, for he heard that the king had left eLachish. 9 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?’”
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.
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, c‘With 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.