Isaiah 37

Hezekiah Seeks Isaiah’s Counsel

1When King Hezekiah heard their report, a he tore his clothes, put on
sackcloth: Garment made of poor quality material and worn as a sign of grief and mourning
sackcloth, c and went to the Lord’s temple.
2Then he sent Eliakim, who was in charge of the palace, Shebna the court secretary, and the leading priests, who were wearing sackcloth, to the prophet Isaiah son of Amoz. 3They said to him, “This is what Hezekiah says: ‘Today is a day of distress, rebuke, and disgrace, d for children have come to the point of birth, and there is no strength to deliver them. e 4 Perhaps
Yahweh/Yah: Or The Lord; the personal name of God in Hebrew; "Yah" is the shortened form of the name.
Yahweh your God will hear all the words of the
Rabshakeh: The title of a high-ranking Assyrian official who was the chief cupbearer to the king
Rabshakeh, whom his master the king of Assyria sent to mock the living God h and will rebuke him for the words that Yahweh your God has heard. Therefore offer a prayer for the surviving remnant.’” i

5So the servants of King Hezekiah went to Isaiah, 6who said to them, “Tell your master this, ‘The Lord says: Don’t be afraid j because of the words you have heard, which the king of Assyria’s attendants have blasphemed Me with. k 7I am about to put a spirit l in him and he will hear a rumor and return to his own land, where I will cause him to fall by the sword.’” m

Sennacherib’s Letter

8 When the Rabshakeh heard that the king of Assyria had left Lachish n he returned and found him fighting against Libnah. o 9The king had heard this about Tirhakah king of
Cush/ Cushite: The lands of the Nile in southern Egypt, including Nubia and Northern Sudan; the people who lived in that region
Cush: q “He has set out to fight against you.” So when he heard this, he sent messengers to Hezekiah, saying,
10 “Say this to Hezekiah king of Judah: ‘Don’t let your God, whom you trust, deceive you r by promising that Jerusalem won’t be handed over to the king of Assyria. 11 Look, you have heard what the kings of Assyria have done to all the countries: they
set apart for destruction/ completely destroy: In Canaan or its neighboring countries, this was the destruction during war of a city, its inhabitants, and their possessions, including livestock.
completely destroyed them. Will you be rescued?
12Did the gods of the nations t that my predecessors destroyed rescue them – Gozan, u Haran, v Rezeph, and the Edenites in Telassar? 13 Where is the king of Hamath, the king of Arpad, the king of the city of Sepharvaim, Hena, or Ivvah?’”

Hezekiah’s Prayer

14 Hezekiah took the letter from the messengers, read it, then went up to the Lord’s temple and spread it out before the Lord. w 15Then Hezekiah prayed x to the Lord:

16 Lord of
Hosts/hosts: Military forces consisting of God's angels, sometimes including the sun, moon, and stars, and occasionally, Israel
Hosts, God of Israel, who is enthroned above the
cherubim: A class of winged angels, associated with the throne of God, who function as guardians and who prevented Adam and Eve from returning to the garden of Eden
cherubim aa You are God ab – You alone ac – of all the kingdoms of the earth. ad You made the heavens and the earth. ae
17Listen closely, Lord, and hear; af open Your eyes, Lord, and see. ag Hear all the words that Sennacherib has sent to mock the living God. ah 18Lord, it is true that the kings of Assyria have devastated all these countries and their lands. 19They have thrown their gods into the fire, for they were not gods ai but made by human hands aj – wood and stone. ak So they have destroyed them. 20 Now, Lord our God, save us from his power so that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that You are the Lord al – You alone. am

God’s Answer through Hezekiah

21 Then Isaiah son of Amoz sent a message to Hezekiah: “The Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘Because you prayed to Me about Sennacherib king of Assyria, 22 this is the word the Lord has spoken against him:

Virgin Daughter
Zion: Originally a term for the fortified section of Jerusalem and then, by extension, used for the temple and the city of Jerusalem both in the present time and in the future
Zion ao
despises you and scorns you:
Daughter Jerusalem shakes her head ap
behind your back.
Lit behind you

23 Who is it you have mocked ar and blasphemed?
Who have you raised your voice against
and lifted your eyes in pride? as
Against the Holy One of Israel! at
24 You have mocked the Lord through
Lit by the hand of
your servants.
You have said, “With my many chariots av
I have gone up to the heights of the mountains,
to the far recesses of Lebanon.
I cut down its tallest cedars,
its choice cypress trees.
I came to its distant heights,
its densest forest.
25 I dug wells
DSS add in foreign lands
and drank water.
I dried up all the streams of Egypt
with the soles of my feet.” ax

26 Have you not heard? ay
I designed it long ago;
I planned it in days gone by. az
I have now brought it to pass,
and you have crushed fortified cities ba
into piles of rubble.
27 Their inhabitants have become powerless,
dismayed, and ashamed.
They are plants of the field,
tender grass,
grass on the rooftops,
blasted by the east wind.
DSS; MT reads rooftops, field before standing grain

28 But I know
DSS read know your rising up and
your sitting down,
your going out and your coming in, bd
and your raging against Me.
29 Because your raging against Me
and your arrogance have reached My ears be
I will put My hook in your nose bf
and My bit in your mouth; bg
I will make you go back
the way you came.

30 “‘This will be the sign for you: bh This year you will eat what grows on its own, and in the second year what grows from that. But in the third year sow and reap, plant vineyards and eat their fruit. 31The surviving remnant of the house of Judah will again take root bi downward and bear fruit upward. 32 For a remnant bj will go out from Jerusalem and survivors, from Mount Zion. The zeal of the Lord of Hosts will accomplish this.’ bk

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

He will not enter this city
or shoot an arrow there
or come before it with a shield
or build up an assault ramp against it.
34 He will go back
the way he came,
and he will not enter this city.

This is the Lord’s declaration.

35 I will defend this city and rescue it
because of Me bl
and because of My servant David.” bm

Defeat and Death of Sennacherib

36 Then bn the angel of the Lord bo went out and struck down 185,000 in the camp of the Assyrians. When the people got up the next morning – there were all the dead bodies! 37So Sennacherib king of Assyria broke camp and left. He returned home and lived in Nineveh. bp

38One day, while he was worshiping in the temple of his god Nisroch, his sons Adrammelech and Sharezer struck him down with the sword and escaped to the land of Ararat. bq Then his son Esar-haddon br became king in his place.
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