Isaiah 38

Hezekiah’s Illness and Recovery

1In those days Hezekiah became terminally ill. a The prophet Isaiah son of Amoz came and said to him, “This is what the Lord says: ‘Put your affairs in order,
Lit Command your house
c for you are about to die; you will not recover.’”
Lit live

2Then Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the Lord. 3He said, “Please, Lord, remember how I have walked before You faithfully and wholeheartedly, e and have done what pleases You.”
Lit what is good in Your eyes
g And Hezekiah wept bitterly.

4Then the word of the Lord came to Isaiah: 5 “Go and tell Hezekiah that this is what the Lord God of your ancestor David says: I have heard your prayer; I have seen your tears. Look, I am going to add 15 years to your life.
Lit days
6And I will deliver you and this city from the power of the king of Assyria; I will defend this city. j 7 This is the sign to you k from the Lord that He will do what
Lit this thing
He has promised:
Lit said
8I am going to make the sun’s shadow that goes down on Ahaz’s stairway go back by 10 steps.” n So the sun’s shadow
Lit And the sun
went back the 10 steps it had descended.

9A poem by Hezekiah king of Judah after he had been sick and had recovered from his illness:

10 I said: In the prime
Lit quiet
of my life
Lit days
I must go to the gates of
Sheol: A Hebrew word for either the grave or the realm of the dead
Sheol; t
I am deprived of the rest of my years.
11 I said: I will never see the Lord,
the Lord in the land of the living; u
I will not look on humanity any longer
with the inhabitants of what is passing away.
Some Hb mss, Tg read of the world

12 My dwelling is plucked up and removed from me
like a shepherd’s tent. w
I have rolled up my life like a weaver; x
He cuts me off from the loom.
Lit thrum
You make an end of me from day until night. aa
13 I thought until the morning:
He will break all my bones like a lion;
You make an end of me day and night.
14 I chirp like a swallow or a crane;
I moan like a dove. ab
My eyes grow weak looking upward.
Lord, I am oppressed; support me. ac

15 What can I say?
He has spoken to me,
and He Himself has done it.
I walk along slowly all my years ad
because of the bitterness of my soul, ae
16 Lord, because of these promises people live, af
and in all of them is the life of my spirit as well;
You have restored me to health ag
and let me live. ah
17 Indeed, it was for my own welfare
that I had such great bitterness; ai
but Your love has delivered me
from the
Pit: Either the grave or the realm of the dead
Pit of destruction, ak
for You have thrown all my sins behind Your back. al
18 For Sheol cannot thank You;
Death cannot praise You. am
Those who go down to the Pit
cannot hope for Your faithfulness.
19 The living, only the living can thank You,
as I do today;
a father will make Your faithfulness known to children. an
20 The Lord will
Lit to
save me;
we will play stringed instruments
all the days of our lives
at the house of the Lord. ap

21Now Isaiah aq had said, “Let them take a lump of pressed figs and apply it to his infected skin, so that he may recover.” 22And Hezekiah had asked, “What is the sign that I will go up to the Lord’s temple?”
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