Jerusalem’s Deliverance Foretold(A)

37 When King Hezekiah heard this, he tore his clothes(B) and put on sackcloth(C) and went into the temple(D) of the Lord. He sent Eliakim(E) the palace administrator, Shebna(F) the secretary, and the leading priests, all wearing sackcloth, to the prophet Isaiah son of Amoz.(G) They told him, “This is what Hezekiah says: This day is a day of distress(H) and rebuke and disgrace, as when children come to the moment of birth(I) and there is no strength to deliver them. It may be that the Lord your God will hear the words of the field commander, whom his master, the king of Assyria, has sent to ridicule(J) the living God,(K) and that he will rebuke him for the words the Lord your God has heard.(L) Therefore pray(M) for the remnant(N) that still survives.”

When King Hezekiah’s officials came to Isaiah, Isaiah said to them, “Tell your master, ‘This is what the Lord says: Do not be afraid(O) of what you have heard—those words with which the underlings of the king of Assyria have blasphemed(P) me. Listen! When he hears a certain report,(Q) I will make him want(R) to return to his own country, and there I will have him cut down(S) with the sword.’”

When the field commander heard that the king of Assyria had left Lachish,(T) he withdrew and found the king fighting against Libnah.(U)

Now Sennacherib(V) received a report(W) that Tirhakah, the king of Cush,[a](X) was marching out to fight against him. When he heard it, he sent messengers to Hezekiah with this word: 10 “Say to Hezekiah king of Judah: Do not let the god you depend on deceive(Y) you when he says, ‘Jerusalem will not be given into the hands of the king of Assyria.’(Z) 11 Surely you have heard what the kings of Assyria have done to all the countries, destroying them completely. And will you be delivered?(AA) 12 Did the gods of the nations that were destroyed by my predecessors(AB) deliver them—the gods of Gozan, Harran,(AC) Rezeph and the people of Eden(AD) who were in Tel Assar? 13 Where is the king of Hamath or the king of Arpad?(AE) Where are the kings of Lair, Sepharvaim,(AF) Hena and Ivvah?”(AG)

Hezekiah’s Prayer(AH)

14 Hezekiah received the letter(AI) from the messengers and read it. Then he went up to the temple(AJ) of the Lord and spread it out before the Lord. 15 And Hezekiah prayed(AK) to the Lord: 16 Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, enthroned(AL) between the cherubim,(AM) you alone are God(AN) over all the kingdoms(AO) of the earth. You have made heaven and earth.(AP) 17 Give ear, Lord, and hear;(AQ) open your eyes, Lord, and see;(AR) listen to all the words Sennacherib(AS) has sent to ridicule(AT) the living God.(AU)

18 “It is true, Lord, that the Assyrian kings have laid waste all these peoples and their lands.(AV) 19 They have thrown their gods into the fire(AW) and destroyed them,(AX) for they were not gods(AY) but only wood and stone, fashioned by human hands.(AZ) 20 Now, Lord our God, deliver(BA) us from his hand, so that all the kingdoms of the earth(BB) may know that you, Lord, are the only God.[b](BC)

Sennacherib’s Fall(BD)

21 Then Isaiah son of Amoz(BE) sent a message to Hezekiah: “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: Because you have prayed to me concerning Sennacherib king of Assyria, 22 this is the word the Lord has spoken against him:

“Virgin Daughter(BF) Zion(BG)
    despises and mocks you.
Daughter Jerusalem
    tosses her head(BH) as you flee.
23 Who is it you have ridiculed and blasphemed?(BI)
    Against whom have you raised your voice(BJ)
and lifted your eyes in pride?(BK)
    Against the Holy One(BL) of Israel!
24 By your messengers
    you have ridiculed the Lord.
And you have said,
    ‘With my many chariots(BM)
I have ascended the heights of the mountains,
    the utmost heights(BN) of Lebanon.(BO)
I have cut down its tallest cedars,
    the choicest of its junipers.(BP)
I have reached its remotest heights,
    the finest of its forests.
25 I have dug wells in foreign lands[c]
    and drunk the water there.
With the soles of my feet
    I have dried up(BQ) all the streams of Egypt.(BR)

26 “Have you not heard?
    Long ago I ordained(BS) it.
In days of old I planned(BT) it;
    now I have brought it to pass,
that you have turned fortified cities
    into piles of stone.(BU)
27 Their people, drained of power,
    are dismayed and put to shame.
They are like plants in the field,
    like tender green shoots,
like grass(BV) sprouting on the roof,(BW)
    scorched[d] before it grows up.

28 “But I know where you are
    and when you come and go(BX)
    and how you rage(BY) against me.
29 Because you rage against me
    and because your insolence(BZ) has reached my ears,
I will put my hook(CA) in your nose(CB)
    and my bit in your mouth,
and I will make you return
    by the way you came.(CC)

30 “This will be the sign(CD) for you, Hezekiah:

“This year(CE) you will eat what grows by itself,
    and the second year what springs from that.
But in the third year(CF) sow and reap,
    plant vineyards(CG) and eat their fruit.(CH)
31 Once more a remnant of the kingdom of Judah
    will take root(CI) below and bear fruit(CJ) above.
32 For out of Jerusalem will come a remnant,(CK)
    and out of Mount Zion a band of survivors.(CL)
The zeal(CM) of the Lord Almighty
    will accomplish this.

33 “Therefore this is what the Lord says concerning the king of Assyria:

“He will not enter this city(CN)
    or shoot an arrow here.
He will not come before it with shield
    or build a siege ramp(CO) against it.
34 By the way that he came he will return;(CP)
    he will not enter this city,”
declares the Lord.
35 “I will defend(CQ) this city and save it,
    for my sake(CR) and for the sake of David(CS) my servant!”

36 Then the angel(CT) of the Lord went out and put to death(CU) a hundred and eighty-five thousand in the Assyrian(CV) camp. When the people got up the next morning—there were all the dead bodies! 37 So Sennacherib(CW) king of Assyria broke camp and withdrew. He returned to Nineveh(CX) and stayed there.

38 One day, while he was worshiping in the temple(CY) of his god Nisrok, his sons Adrammelek and Sharezer killed him with the sword, and they escaped to the land of Ararat.(CZ) And Esarhaddon(DA) his son succeeded him as king.(DB)

Hezekiah’s Illness(DC)

38 In those days Hezekiah became ill and was at the point of death. The prophet Isaiah son of Amoz(DD) went to him and said, “This is what the Lord says: Put your house in order,(DE) because you are going to die; you will not recover.”(DF)

Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the Lord, “Remember, Lord, how I have walked(DG) before you faithfully and with wholehearted devotion(DH) and have done what is good in your eyes.(DI)” And Hezekiah wept(DJ) bitterly.

Then the word(DK) of the Lord came to Isaiah: “Go and tell Hezekiah, ‘This is what the Lord, the God of your father David,(DL) says: I have heard your prayer and seen your tears;(DM) I will add fifteen years(DN) to your life. And I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria. I will defend(DO) this city.

“‘This is the Lord’s sign(DP) to you that the Lord will do what he has promised: I will make the shadow cast by the sun go back the ten steps it has gone down on the stairway of Ahaz.’” So the sunlight went back the ten steps it had gone down.(DQ)

A writing of Hezekiah king of Judah after his illness and recovery:

10 I said, “In the prime of my life(DR)
    must I go through the gates of death(DS)
    and be robbed of the rest of my years?(DT)
11 I said, “I will not again see the Lord himself(DU)
    in the land of the living;(DV)
no longer will I look on my fellow man,
    or be with those who now dwell in this world.
12 Like a shepherd’s tent(DW) my house
    has been pulled down(DX) and taken from me.
Like a weaver I have rolled(DY) up my life,
    and he has cut me off from the loom;(DZ)
    day and night(EA) you made an end of me.
13 I waited patiently(EB) till dawn,
    but like a lion he broke(EC) all my bones;(ED)
    day and night(EE) you made an end of me.
14 I cried like a swift or thrush,
    I moaned like a mourning dove.(EF)
My eyes grew weak(EG) as I looked to the heavens.
    I am being threatened; Lord, come to my aid!”(EH)

15 But what can I say?(EI)
    He has spoken to me, and he himself has done this.(EJ)
I will walk humbly(EK) all my years
    because of this anguish of my soul.(EL)
16 Lord, by such things people live;
    and my spirit finds life in them too.
You restored me to health
    and let me live.(EM)
17 Surely it was for my benefit(EN)
    that I suffered such anguish.(EO)
In your love you kept me
    from the pit(EP) of destruction;
you have put all my sins(EQ)
    behind your back.(ER)
18 For the grave(ES) cannot praise you,
    death cannot sing your praise;(ET)
those who go down to the pit(EU)
    cannot hope for your faithfulness.
19 The living, the living—they praise(EV) you,
    as I am doing today;
parents tell their children(EW)
    about your faithfulness.

20 The Lord will save me,
    and we will sing(EX) with stringed instruments(EY)
all the days of our lives(EZ)
    in the temple(FA) of the Lord.

21 Isaiah had said, “Prepare a poultice of figs and apply it to the boil, and he will recover.”

22 Hezekiah had asked, “What will be the sign(FB) that I will go up to the temple of the Lord?”

Envoys From Babylon(FC)

39 At that time Marduk-Baladan son of Baladan king of Babylon(FD) sent Hezekiah letters and a gift, because he had heard of his illness and recovery. Hezekiah received the envoys(FE) gladly and showed them what was in his storehouses—the silver, the gold,(FF) the spices, the fine olive oil—his entire armory and everything found among his treasures.(FG) There was nothing in his palace or in all his kingdom that Hezekiah did not show them.

Then Isaiah the prophet went to King Hezekiah and asked, “What did those men say, and where did they come from?”

“From a distant land,(FH)” Hezekiah replied. “They came to me from Babylon.”

The prophet asked, “What did they see in your palace?”

“They saw everything in my palace,” Hezekiah said. “There is nothing among my treasures that I did not show them.”

Then Isaiah said to Hezekiah, “Hear the word(FI) of the Lord Almighty: The time will surely come when everything in your palace, and all that your predecessors have stored up until this day, will be carried off to Babylon.(FJ) Nothing will be left, says the Lord. And some of your descendants, your own flesh and blood who will be born to you, will be taken away, and they will become eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon.(FK)

“The word of the Lord you have spoken is good,(FL)” Hezekiah replied. For he thought, “There will be peace and security in my lifetime.(FM)

Footnotes

  1. Isaiah 37:9 That is, the upper Nile region
  2. Isaiah 37:20 Dead Sea Scrolls (see also 2 Kings 19:19); Masoretic Text you alone are the Lord
  3. Isaiah 37:25 Dead Sea Scrolls (see also 2 Kings 19:24); Masoretic Text does not have in foreign lands.
  4. Isaiah 37:27 Some manuscripts of the Masoretic Text, Dead Sea Scrolls and some Septuagint manuscripts (see also 2 Kings 19:26); most manuscripts of the Masoretic Text roof / and terraced fields