2 Kings 18:17-19:37
New American Standard Bible
17 Then the king of Assyria sent (A)Tartan, Rab-saris, and Rabshakeh from Lachish to King Hezekiah with a large army to Jerusalem. So they went up and came to Jerusalem. And when they went up, they came and stood by the (B)conduit of the upper pool, which is on the road of the [a]fuller’s field. 18 Then they called to the king, and (C)Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, who was in charge of the household, (D)Shebnah the scribe, and Joah the son of Asaph the secretary, went out to them.
19 And Rabshakeh said to them, “Say now to Hezekiah, ‘This is what the great king, the king of Assyria says: “(E)What is this confidence that you [b]have? 20 You say—but they are only [c]empty words—‘I have a plan and strength for the war.’ Now on whom have you relied, (F)that you have revolted against me? 21 Now behold, you have [d](G)relied on the [e]support of this broken reed, on Egypt; on which if a man leans, it will go into his [f]hand and pierce it. That is how Pharaoh king of Egypt is to all who rely on him. 22 However, if you say to me, ‘We have trusted in the Lord our God,’ is it not He whose high places and (H)whose altars Hezekiah has removed, and has said to Judah and to Jerusalem, ‘You shall worship before this altar in Jerusalem’? 23 Now then, [g]come 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 put riders on them! 24 How then can you drive back even [h]one [i]official of the least of my master’s servants, and [j]rely on Egypt for chariots and horsemen? 25 Have I now come up without [k]the Lord’s approval against this place to destroy it? The Lord said to me, ‘Go up against this land and destroy it.’”’”
26 Then Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, Shebnah, and Joah, said to Rabshakeh, “Speak now to your servants in Aramaic, because we [l]understand it; and do not speak with us in [m](I)Judean [n]so that the people who are on the wall hear you.” 27 But Rabshakeh said to them, “Has my master sent me only to your master and to you to speak these words? Has he not also sent me to the men who sit on the wall, doomed to eat their own dung and drink their own urine with you?”
28 Then Rabshakeh stood up and shouted with a loud voice in Judean, [o]saying, “Hear the word of the great king, the king of Assyria! 29 This is what the king says: ‘(J)Do not let Hezekiah deceive you, for he will not be able to save you from [p]my hand. 30 And do not let Hezekiah lead you to trust in the Lord by saying, “The Lord will certainly save us, and this city will not be handed over to the king of Assyria.” 31 Do not listen to Hezekiah, for this is what the king of Assyria says: “Make [q]your peace with me and come out to me, and eat, (K)each one, from his vine and each from his fig tree, and drink, each one, the waters of his own cistern, 32 until I come and take you (L)to a land like your own land, a land of grain and new wine, a land of bread and vineyards, a land of olive trees producing oil, and of honey, so that you will live and not die.” But do not listen to Hezekiah, because he misleads you by saying, “The Lord will save us.” 33 (M)Has any of the gods of the nations actually saved his land from the hand of the king of Assyria? 34 (N)Where are the gods of Hamath and (O)Arpad? Where are the gods of Sepharvaim, Hena, and [r](P)Ivvah? Have they saved Samaria from my hand? 35 Who among all the gods of the lands are there who have saved their land from my hand, (Q)that the Lord would save Jerusalem from my hand?’”
36 But the people were silent and did not answer him with even a word, because it was the king’s [s]command: “Do not answer him.” 37 Then (R)Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, who was in charge of the household, and Shebna the scribe and Joah the son of Asaph, the secretary, came to Hezekiah (S)with their clothes torn, and they reported to him the words of Rabshakeh.
Isaiah Encourages Hezekiah
19 (T)Now when King Hezekiah heard the report, he (U)tore his clothes, (V)covered himself with sackcloth, and entered the house of the Lord. 2 Then he sent Eliakim, who was in charge of the household, with Shebna the scribe and the elders of the priests, (W)covered with sackcloth, to (X)Isaiah the prophet, the son of Amoz. 3 And they said to him, “This is what Hezekiah says: ‘This day is a day of distress, rebuke, and humiliation; for children have come to the point of birth, and there is no strength to deliver them. 4 (Y)Perhaps the Lord your God will hear all the words of Rabshakeh, whom his master the king of Assyria has sent (Z)to taunt the living God, and will avenge the words which the Lord your God has heard. Therefore, offer a prayer for (AA)the remnant that is [t]left.’” 5 So the servants of King Hezekiah came to Isaiah. 6 And Isaiah said to them, “This is what you shall say to your master: ‘The Lord says this: “Do not be fearful because of the words that you have heard, with which the (AB)servants of the king of Assyria (AC)have blasphemed Me. 7 Behold, I am going to put a spirit in him so that (AD)he will hear news and return to his own land. And (AE)I will make him fall by the sword in his own land.”’”
Sennacherib Defies God
8 Then Rabshakeh returned and found the king of Assyria fighting against (AF)Libnah, for he had heard that the king had left (AG)Lachish. 9 When he heard them say about Tirhakah king of [u]Cush, “Behold, he has come out to fight you,” he sent messengers again to Hezekiah, saying, 10 “This is what you shall say to Hezekiah king of [v]Judah: ‘Do not (AH)let your God in whom you trust deceive you by saying, “(AI)Jerusalem will not be handed over to the king of Assyria.” 11 Behold, you yourself have heard what the kings of Assyria have done to all the lands, destroying them completely. So will you be saved? 12 (AJ)Did the gods of the nations which my fathers destroyed save them: (AK)Gozan, (AL)Haran, Rezeph, and (AM)the sons of Eden who were in Telassar? 13 (AN)Where is the king of Hamath, the king of Arpad, the king of the city of Sepharvaim, and of Hena and Ivvah?’”
14 Then (AO)Hezekiah took the [w]letter from the hand of the messengers and read it, and he went up to the house of the Lord and [x]spread it out before the Lord. 15 Hezekiah prayed before the Lord and said, “Lord, God of Israel, [y](AP)enthroned above the cherubim, (AQ)You are the God, You alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth. You have made heaven and earth. 16 (AR)Incline Your ear, Lord, and hear; (AS)open Your eyes, Lord, and see; and listen to the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent (AT)to taunt the living God. 17 It is true, Lord; the kings of Assyria have laid waste the nations and their lands, 18 and have [z]hurled their gods into the fire; (AU)for they were not gods, but only the work of human hands, wood and stone. So they have destroyed them. 19 But now, Lord our God, please, save us from his hand, (AV)so that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that You alone, (AW)Lord, are God.”
God’s Answer through Isaiah
20 Then Isaiah the son of Amoz sent word to Hezekiah, saying, “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel says: ‘Because you have prayed to Me about Sennacherib king of Assyria, (AX)I have heard you.’ 21 This is the word that the Lord has spoken against him:
‘She, (AY)the virgin daughter of Zion, has shown contempt for you and mocked you;
She, the daughter of Jerusalem, (AZ)has shaken her head behind you!
22 Whom have you (BA)taunted and (BB)blasphemed?
And against whom have you raised your voice,
And [aa]haughtily raised your eyes?
Against the (BC)Holy One of Israel!
23 (BD)Through your messengers you have taunted the Lord,
And you have said, “With my many chariots
I went up to the heights of the mountains,
To the remotest parts of Lebanon;
And I cut down its tall cedars and its choicest junipers.
And I entered its farthest resting place, its (BE)thickest forest.
24 I dug wells and drank foreign waters,
And with the soles of my feet I (BF)dried up
All the streams of Egypt.”
25 ‘(BG)Have you not heard?
Long ago I did it;
From ancient times I planned it.
(BH)Now I have brought it about,
That you would turn fortified cities into ruined heaps.
26 Therefore their inhabitants were [ab]powerless,
They were shattered and put to shame.
They were (BI)like the vegetation of the field and the green grass,
Like grass on the housetops that is scorched before it has grown.
27 But (BJ)I know your sitting down,
Your going out, your coming in,
And your raging against Me.
28 Because of your raging against Me,
And because your complacency has come up to My ears,
I (BK)will put My hook in your nose,
And My bridle in your lips,
And (BL)I will turn you back by the way by which you came.
29 ‘Then this shall be (BM)the sign for you: [ac]you will eat this year what grows of itself, in the second year what grows by itself, and in the third year sow, harvest, plant vineyards, and eat their fruit. 30 (BN)The survivors that are left of the house of Judah will again take root downward and bear fruit upward. 31 For out of Jerusalem will go a remnant, and survivors (BO)out of Mount Zion. (BP)The zeal of [ad]the Lord will perform this.
32 ‘Therefore this is what the Lord says about the king of Assyria: “(BQ)He will not come to this city nor shoot an arrow there; and he will not come before it with a shield nor heap up an assault ramp against it. 33 (BR)By the way that he came, by [ae]the same he will return, and he shall not come to this city,”’ declares the Lord. 34 ‘(BS)For I will protect this city to save it for My own sake, and (BT)for My servant David’s sake.’”
35 (BU)Then it happened that night that the angel of the Lord went out and struck 185,000 in the camp of the Assyrians; and when the rest got up early in the morning, behold, all of [af]the 185,000 were [ag]dead. 36 So (BV)Sennacherib the king of Assyria departed and [ah]returned home, and lived at (BW)Nineveh. 37 Then it came about, as he was worshiping in the house of Nisroch his god, that [ai](BX)Adrammelech and Sharezer killed him with the sword; and they escaped to (BY)the land of Ararat. And his son (BZ)Esarhaddon became king in his place.
- 2 Kings 18:17 I.e., launderer’s
- 2 Kings 18:19 Lit trust
- 2 Kings 18:20 Lit a word of lips
- 2 Kings 18:21 Lit relied for yourself
- 2 Kings 18:21 Or staff
- 2 Kings 18:21 Lit palm
- 2 Kings 18:23 Lit please exchange pledges
- 2 Kings 18:24 Lit the face of one
- 2 Kings 18:24 Or governor
- 2 Kings 18:24 Lit rely for yourself
- 2 Kings 18:25 Lit the Lord
- 2 Kings 18:26 Lit hear
- 2 Kings 18:26 I.e., Hebrew
- 2 Kings 18:26 Lit in the ears of...wall
- 2 Kings 18:28 Lit and spoke, saying,
- 2 Kings 18:29 MT his
- 2 Kings 18:31 Lit with me a blessing
- 2 Kings 18:34 In 2 Kin 17:24, Avva
- 2 Kings 18:36 Lit command, saying
- 2 Kings 19:4 Lit found
- 2 Kings 19:9 Or Ethiopia
- 2 Kings 19:10 Lit Judah, saying,
- 2 Kings 19:14 Lit letters...read them
- 2 Kings 19:14 Lit Hezekiah spread
- 2 Kings 19:15 Lit sitting
- 2 Kings 19:18 Lit given
- 2 Kings 19:22 Lit on high
- 2 Kings 19:26 Lit short of hand
- 2 Kings 19:29 Lit to eat
- 2 Kings 19:31 Some ancient mss the Lord of armies
- 2 Kings 19:33 Lit it
- 2 Kings 19:35 Lit them
- 2 Kings 19:35 Lit dead bodies
- 2 Kings 19:36 Lit went and returned
- 2 Kings 19:37 Some ancient mss his sons Adrammelech