Sennacherib Invades Judah1 aIn the fourteenth year of King Hezekiah bSennacherib king of Assyria came up against all the fortified cities of Judah and took them. 2 cAnd the king of Assyria sent the Rabshakeh ▼
▼ Rabshakeh is the title of a high-ranking Assyrian military officerfrom eLachish to King Hezekiah at Jerusalem, with a great army. And he stood fby the conduit of the upper pool on the highway to the Washer’s Field. 3And there came out to him gEliakim the son of Hilkiah, who was over the household, and hShebna the secretary, and Joah the son of Asaph, the recorder. 4And the Rabshakeh said to them, “Say to Hezekiah, ‘Thus says the igreat king, the king of Assyria: On what do you rest this trust of yours? 5Do you think that mere words are strategy and power for war? In whom do you now trust, that you have rebelled against me? 6 jBehold, you are trusting in Egypt, that broken reed of a 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. 7But if you say to me, “We trust in the Lord our God,” is it not he kwhose high places and altars Hezekiah has removed, saying to Judah and to Jerusalem, “You shall worship before this altar”? 8Come 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. 9How then can you repulse la single captain among the least of my master’s servants, when myou trust in Egypt for chariots and for horsemen? 10Moreover, is it without the Lord that I have come up against this land to destroy it? nThe Lord said to me, Go up against this land and destroy it.’” 11Then Eliakim, Shebna, and Joah said to the Rabshakeh, “Please speak to your servants oin Aramaic, 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.” 12But the Rabshakeh said, “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 drink their own urine?” 13Then the Rabshakeh stood and called out in a loud voice in the language of Judah: “Hear the words of the great king, the king of Assyria! 14Thus says the king: p‘Do not let Hezekiah deceive you, for he will not be able to deliver you. 15Do not let Hezekiah make you trust in the Lord by saying, “The Lord will surely deliver us. This city will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria.” 16Do not listen to Hezekiah. For thus says the king of Assyria: Make your peace with me ▼
▼Hebrew Make a blessing with meand come out to me. Then each 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, 17until rI come and take you away to a land like your own land, a land of grain and wine, a land of bread and vineyards. 18Beware lest Hezekiah mislead you by saying, “The Lord will deliver us.” Has any of the gods of the nations delivered his land out of the hand of the king of Assyria? 19 sWhere are the gods of tHamath and uArpad? Where are the gods of Sepharvaim? vHave they delivered Samaria out of my hand? 20 wWho among all the gods of these lands have delivered their lands out of my hand, that the Lord should deliver Jerusalem out of my hand?’” 21But they were silent and answered him not a word, for the king’s command was, “Do not answer him.” 22 xThen Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, who was over the household, and Shebna the secretary, and Joah the son of Asaph, the recorder, came to Hezekiah with their clothes torn, and told him the words of the Rabshakeh.
Hezekiah Seeks Isaiah’s Help1 yAs soon as King Hezekiah heard it, he tore his clothes and covered himself with sackcloth and went into the house of the Lord. 2And he sent Eliakim, who was over the household, and Shebna the secretary, and the senior priests, covered with sackcloth, to the prophet zIsaiah the son of Amoz. 3They said to him, “Thus says Hezekiah, ‘This day is a aaday of distress, of rebuke, and of disgrace; abchildren have come to the point of birth, and there is no strength to bring them forth. 4 acIt 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 adthe remnant that is left.’” 5When the servants of King Hezekiah came to Isaiah, 6Isaiah 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. 7Behold aeI will put a spirit in him, so that afhe shall hear a rumor and return to his own land, and agI will make him fall by the sword in his own land.’” 8The Rabshakeh returned, and found the king of Assyria fighting against ahLibnah, for he had heard that the king had left aiLachish. 9Now the king heard concerning Tirhakah king of ajCush, ▼
▼Probably Nubia“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: al‘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. 11Behold, you have heard what the kings of Assyria have done to all lands, devoting them to destruction. And shall you be delivered? 12 amHave the gods of the nations delivered them, the nations that my fathers destroyed anGozan aoHaran, Rezeph, and the people of Eden who were in Telassar? 13 apWhere 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 Deliverance14Hezekiah 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. 15And Hezekiah prayed to the Lord: 16“O Lord of hosts, God of Israel aqenthroned above the cherubim, you are the God, you alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth; aryou have made heaven and earth. 17 asIncline your ear, O Lord, and hear; open your eyes, O Lord, and see; and hear atall the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent to mock the living God. 18Truly, O Lord authe kings of Assyria have laid waste all the nations and their lands, 19and 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. 20So 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 Fall21Then 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, 22this is the word that the Lord has spoken concerning him: “‘She despises you, she scorns you—
avthe 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 awthe Holy One of Israel!
24By your servants you have mocked the Lord,
and you have said axWith my many chariots
I have gone up the heights of the mountains,
to the far recesses of Lebanon,
ayto cut down its tallest cedars,
its choicest cypresses,
to come to its remotest height,
its most fruitful forest.
25I dug wells
and drank waters,
to dry up with the sole of my foot
all azthe streams baof Egypt.
26 bb“‘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,
27while 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,
▼Some Hebrew manuscripts and 2 Kings 19:26; most Hebrew manuscripts like a fieldbefore it is grown.
28 “‘I know your sitting down
and your going out and coming in,
and your raging against me.
29 bdBecause 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 beI 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. 31And the surviving remnant of the house of Judah bfshall again take root downward and bear fruit upward. 32 bgFor out of Jerusalem shall go a remnant, and out of Mount Zion a band of survivors. bhThe 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 bicast up a siege mound against it. 34By the way that he came, by the same he shall return, and he shall not come into this city, declares the Lord. 35 bjFor I will defend this city to save it, for my own sake and for bkthe sake of my servant David.” 36 blAnd 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. 37Then Sennacherib king of Assyria departed and returned home and lived at bmNineveh. 38And 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 bnArarat, boEsarhaddon his son reigned in his place.
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