The Invasion of Sennacherib
36 1 And it came to pass in the fourteenth year of king Hezekiah, that Sennacherib king of Assyria came up against all the fortified cities of Judah, and took them. 2 And the king of Assyria sent Rab-shakeh from Lachish to Jerusalem, to king Hezekiah, with a strong force. And he stood by the aqueduct of the upper pool, on the highway of the fuller's field. 3 Then came forth to him Eliakim the son of Hilkijah, who was over the household, and Shebna the scribe, and Joah the son of Asaph, the chronicler. 4 And Rab-shakeh said to them, Say now to Hezekiah, Thus says the great king, the king of Assyria: What confidence is this in which thou trustest? 5 Thou sayest, but it is a word of the lips, [There is] counsel and strength for war. Now on whom dost thou rely, that thou hast revolted against me? 6 Behold, thou reliest upon the staff of that broken reed, upon Egypt, on which if a man lean, it goes into his hand, and pierces it: so is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all that rely upon him. 7 And if thou say to me, We rely upon Jehovah our God: is it not he, whose high places and whose altars Hezekiah has removed, saying to Judah and Jerusalem, Ye shall worship before this altar? 8 And now engage, I pray thee, with my master the king of Assyria, and I will give thee two thousand horses, if thou be able on thy part to set riders upon them. 9 How then wilt thou turn away the face of one captain of the least of my master's servants? And thou reliest upon Egypt for chariots and for horsemen! 10 And now am I come up without Jehovah against this land to destroy it? Jehovah said to me, Go up against this land and destroy it.
11 And Eliakim and Shebna and Joah said to Rab-shakeh, Speak, we pray thee, to thy servants in Syriac, for we understand it; and speak not to us in the Jewish [language] in the ears of the people that are upon the wall. 12 And Rab-shakeh said, Is it to thy master and to thee that my master sent me to speak these words? Is it not to the men that sit on the wall, that they may eat their own dung, and drink their own urine with you? 13 And Rab-shakeh stood and cried with a loud voice in the Jewish [language], and said, Hear the words of the great king, the king of Assyria! 14 Thus says the king: Let not Hezekiah deceive you; for he will not be able to deliver you. 15 Neither let Hezekiah make you rely upon Jehovah, saying, Jehovah will certainly deliver us; this city shall not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria. 16 Hearken not to Hezekiah; for thus says the king of Assyria: Make peace with me and come out to me; and eat every one of his vine, and every one of his fig-tree, and drink every one the waters of his own cistern; 17 until I come and take you away to a land like your own land, a land of corn and wine, a land of bread and vineyards. 18 Let not Hezekiah persuade you, saying, Jehovah will deliver us. Has any of the gods of the nations delivered his land out of the hand of the king of Assyria? 19 Where are the gods of Hamath and of Arpad? where are the gods of Sepharvaim? and have they delivered Samaria out of my hand? 20 Who are they among all the gods of these countries that have delivered their country out of my hand, that Jehovah should deliver Jerusalem out of my hand? 21 And they were silent, and answered him not a word; for the king's command was, saying, Answer him not. 22 And Eliakim the son of Hilkijah, who was over the household, and Shebna the scribe, and Joah the son of Asaph, the chronicler, came to Hezekiah, with their garments rent, and told him the words of Rab-shakeh.
Judah Delivered from Sennacherib
37 1 And it came to pass when king Hezekiah heard [it], that he rent his garments, and covered himself with sackcloth, and went into the house of Jehovah. 2 And he sent Eliakim, who was over the household, and Shebna the scribe, and the elders of the priests, covered with sackcloth, to the prophet Isaiah the son of Amoz. 3 And they said to him, Thus says Hezekiah: This day is a day of trouble, and of rebuke, and of reviling; for the children are come to the birth, and there is not strength to bring forth. 4 It may be Jehovah thy God will hear the words of Rab-shakeh, whom the king of Assyria his master has sent to reproach the living God, and will rebuke the words which Jehovah thy God hath heard. Therefore lift up a prayer for the remnant that is left. 5 And the servants of king Hezekiah came to Isaiah. 6 And Isaiah said to them, Thus shall ye say to your master, Thus saith Jehovah: Be not afraid of the words that thou hast heard, wherewith the servants of the king of Assyria have blasphemed me. 7 Behold, I will put a spirit into him, and he shall hear tidings, and shall return to his own land; and I will cause him to fall by the sword in his own land.
8 And Rab-shakeh returned, and found the king of Assyria warring against Libnah; for he had heard that he had departed from Lachish. 9 And he heard say of Tirhakah king of Ethiopia, He has come forth to make war with thee. And when he heard [it], he sent messengers to Hezekiah, saying, 10 Thus shall ye speak to Hezekiah king of Judah, saying: Let not thy God, upon whom thou reliest, deceive thee, saying, Jerusalem shall not be delivered into the hand of the king of Assyria. 11 Behold, thou hast heard what the kings of Assyria have done to all countries, destroying them utterly; and shalt thou be delivered? 12 Have the gods of the nations which my fathers have destroyed delivered them, Gozan, and Haran, and Rezeph, and the children of Eden that were in Thelassar? 13 Where is the king of Hamath, and the king of Arpad, and the king of the city of Sepharvaim, of Hena, and Ivvah? 14 And Hezekiah received the letter from the hand of the messengers, and read it; and Hezekiah went up into the house of Jehovah, and spread it before Jehovah. 15 And Hezekiah prayed to Jehovah, saying, 16 Jehovah of hosts, the God of Israel, who sittest [between] the cherubim, thou, the Same, thou alone art the God of all the kingdoms of the earth: thou hast made the heavens and the earth. 17 Incline thine ear, O Jehovah, and hear; open, Jehovah, thine eyes, and see; and hear all the words of Sennacherib, who hath sent to reproach the living God. 18 Of a truth, Jehovah, the kings of Assyria have laid waste all the lands, and their countries, 19 and have cast their gods into the fire; for they were no gods, but the work of men's hands, wood and stone; and they have destroyed them. 20 And now, Jehovah our God, save us out of his hand, that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that thou art Jehovah, thou only.
21 And Isaiah the son of Amoz sent to Hezekiah, saying, Thus saith Jehovah the God of Israel, Whereas thou hast prayed to me concerning Sennacherib king of Assyria, 22 this is the word which Jehovah hath spoken against him: The virgin-daughter of Zion despiseth thee, laugheth thee to scorn; the daughter of Jerusalem shaketh her head at thee. 23 Whom hast thou reproached and blasphemed? and against whom hast thou exalted the voice? Against the Holy One of Israel hast thou lifted up thine eyes on high. 24 By thy servants thou hast reproached the Lord, and hast said, With the multitude of my chariots am I come up to the height of the mountains, to the recesses of Lebanon; and I will cut down its tall cedars, the choice of its cypresses; and I will enter into its furthest height, [into] the forest of its fruitful field. 25 I have digged and drunk water; and with the sole of my feet have I dried up all the streams of Matsor. 26 Hast thou not heard that long ago I did it, and that from ancient days I formed it? Now have I brought it to pass, that thou shouldest lay waste fortified cities [into] ruinous heaps. 27 And their inhabitants were powerless, they were dismayed and put to shame; they were [as] the grass of the field and the green herb, [as] the grass on the housetops, and grain blighted before it be grown up. 28 But I know thine abode, and thy going out, and thy coming in, and thy raging against me. 29 Because thy raging against me and thine arrogance is come up into mine ears, I will put my ring in thy nose, and my bridle in thy lips, and I will make thee go back by the way by which thou camest. 30 And this [shall be] the sign unto thee: there shall be eaten this year such as groweth of itself; and in the second year that which springeth of the same; but in the third year sow ye, and reap, and plant vineyards and eat the fruit thereof. 31 And the remnant that is escaped of the house of Judah shall again take root downward, and bear fruit upward; 32 for out of Jerusalem shall go forth a remnant, and out of mount Zion they that escape: the zeal of Jehovah of hosts shall do this. 33 Therefore thus saith Jehovah concerning the king of Assyria: He shall not come into this city, nor shoot an arrow there, nor come before it with shield, nor cast a bank against it. 34 By the way that he came, by the same shall he return, and shall not come into this city, saith Jehovah. 35 And I will defend this city, to save it, for mine own sake, and for my servant David's sake. 36 And an angel of Jehovah went forth, and smote in the camp of the Assyrians a hundred and eighty-five thousand. And when they arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead bodies. 37 And Sennacherib king of Assyria departed, and went and returned, and abode at Nineveh. 38 And it came to pass, as he was worshipping in the house of Nisroch his god, that Adrammelech and Sharezer his sons smote him with the sword; and they escaped into the land of Ararat. And Esarhaddon his son reigned in his stead.
38 1 In those days Hezekiah was sick unto death. And the prophet Isaiah the son of Amoz came to him, and said to him, Thus saith Jehovah: Set thy house in order; for thou shalt die, and not live. 2 And Hezekiah turned his face to the wall, and prayed to Jehovah, 3 and said, Ah, Jehovah, remember, I beseech thee, how I have walked before thee in truth and with a perfect heart, and have done that which is good in thy sight. And Hezekiah wept much. 4 And the word of Jehovah came to Isaiah, saying, 5 Go and say to Hezekiah, Thus saith Jehovah, the God of David thy father: I have heard thy prayer, I have seen thy tears: behold, I will add to thy days fifteen years. 6 And I will deliver thee and this city out of the hand of the king of Assyria, and I will defend this city. 7 And this [shall be] the sign to thee from Jehovah, that Jehovah will do this thing that he hath spoken: 8 behold, I will bring again the shadow of the degrees which hath gone down with the sun on the dial of Ahaz, ten degrees backward. So the sun returned on the dial ten degrees, by which it had gone down.
9 The writing of Hezekiah king of Judah, when he had been sick and had recovered from his sickness: 10 I said, In the meridian of my days I shall go to the gates of Sheol: I am deprived of the rest of my years. 11 I said, I shall not see Jah, Jah in the land of the living. With those who dwell where all has ceased to be, I shall behold man no more. 12 Mine age is departed, and is removed from me as a shepherd's tent. I have cut off like a weaver my life. He separateth me from the thrum:—from day to night thou wilt make an end of me. 13 I kept still until the morning; ... as a lion, so doth he break all my bones. From day to night thou wilt make an end of me. 14 Like a swallow [or] a crane, so did I chatter; I mourned as a dove; mine eyes failed [with looking] upward: Lord, I am oppressed; undertake for me. 15 What shall I say? He hath both spoken unto me, and himself hath done [it]. I shall go softly all my years in the bitterness of my soul. 16 Lord, by these things [men] live, and in all these things is the life of my spirit; and thou hast recovered me, and made me to live. 17 Behold, instead of peace I had bitterness upon bitterness; but thou hast in love delivered my soul from the pit of destruction; for thou hast cast all my sins behind thy back. 18 For not Sheol shall praise thee, nor death celebrate thee; they that go down into the pit do not hope for thy truth. 19 The living, the living, he shall praise thee, as I this day: the father to the children shall make known thy truth. 20 Jehovah was [purposed] to save me.—And we will play upon my stringed instruments all the days of our life, in the house of Jehovah. 21 Now Isaiah had said, Let them take a cake of figs, and lay it for a plaster upon the boil, and he shall recover. 22 And Hezekiah had said, What is the sign that I shall go up into the house of Jehovah?
Hezekiah Receives Envoys from Babylon
39 1 At that time Merodach-Baladan, the son of Baladan, king of Babylon, sent a letter and a present to Hezekiah; for he had heard that he had been sick and had recovered. 2 And Hezekiah was glad of them, and shewed them the house of his precious things, the silver and the gold, and the spices and the fine oil, and all the house of his armour, and all that was found amongst his treasures: there was nothing in his house, nor in all his dominion, that Hezekiah did not shew them. 3 Then came the prophet Isaiah to king Hezekiah, and said to him, What said these men? and from whence came they to thee? And Hezekiah said, They came from a far country to me, from Babylon. 4 And he said, What have they seen in thy house? And Hezekiah said, All that is in my house have they seen: there is nothing among my treasures that I have not shewn them.
5 And Isaiah said to Hezekiah, Hear the word of Jehovah of hosts: 6 Behold, days come when all that is in thy house, and that which thy fathers have laid up until this day, shall be carried to Babylon: nothing shall be left, saith Jehovah. 7 And of thy sons that shall issue from thee, whom thou shalt beget, shall they take away; and they shall be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon. 8 And Hezekiah said to Isaiah, Good is the word of Jehovah which thou hast spoken. And he said, For there shall be peace and truth in my days.
The LORD's Comforting Words to Zion
40 1 Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God. 2 Speak to the heart of Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her time of suffering is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned; for she hath received of Jehovah's hand double for all her sins.
3 The voice of one crying in the wilderness: Prepare ye the way of Jehovah, make straight in the desert a highway for our God! 4 Every valley shall be raised up, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low; and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places a plain. 5 And the glory of Jehovah shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see [it] together: for the mouth of Jehovah hath spoken. 6 A voice saith, Cry. And he saith, What shall I cry?—All flesh is grass, and all the comeliness thereof as the flower of the field. 7 The grass withereth, the flower fadeth, for the breath of Jehovah bloweth upon it: surely the people is grass. 8 The grass withereth, the flower fadeth; but the word of our God abideth for ever.
9 O Zion, that bringest glad tidings, get thee up into a high mountain; O Jerusalem, that bringest glad tidings, lift up thy voice with strength: lift it up, be not afraid; say unto the cities of Judah, Behold your God! 10 Behold, the Lord Jehovah will come with might, and his arm shall rule for him; behold, his reward is with him, and his recompence before him. 11 He will feed his flock like a shepherd: he will gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom; he will gently lead those that give suck.
Israel's Incomparable God
12 Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, and meted out the heavens with [his] span, and grasped the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the mountains in a balance, and the hills in scales? 13 Who hath directed the Spirit of Jehovah, and, [as] his counsellor, hath taught him? 14 With whom took he counsel, and [who] gave him intelligence, and instructed him in the path of judgment, and taught him knowledge, and shewed him the way of understanding? 15 Behold, the nations are esteemed as a drop of the bucket, and as the fine dust on the scales; behold, he taketh up the isles as an atom. 16 And Lebanon is not sufficient to burn, nor the beasts thereof sufficient for a burnt-offering. 17 All the nations are as nothing before him; they are esteemed by him less than a cipher, and vanity.
18 To whom then will ye liken God? and what likeness will ye compare unto him? 19 The workman casteth a graven image, and the goldsmith spreadeth it over with gold, and casteth silver chains [for it]. 20 He that is impoverished, so that he hath no offering, chooseth a tree that doth not rot; he seeketh unto him a skilled workman to prepare a graven image that shall not be moved. 21 —Do ye not know? Have ye not heard? Hath it not been told you from the beginning? Have ye not understood the foundation of the earth? 22 [It is] he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a gauze curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in; 23 that bringeth the princes to nothing, that maketh the judges of the earth as vanity. 24 Scarcely are they planted, scarcely are they sown, scarcely hath their stock taken root in the earth, but he also bloweth upon them and they wither, and the whirlwind taketh them away as stubble. 25 To whom then will ye liken me, or shall I be equal? saith the Holy One. 26 Lift up your eyes on high, and see! Who hath created these things, bringing out their host by number? He calleth them all by name; through the greatness of his might and strength of power, not one faileth.
27 Why sayest thou, Jacob, and speakest, O Israel, My way is hid from Jehovah, and my right is passed away from my God? 28 Dost thou not know, hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, Jehovah, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not nor tireth? There is no searching of his understanding. 29 He giveth power to the faint; and to him that hath no might he increaseth strength. 30 Even the youths shall faint and shall tire, and the young men shall stumble and fall; 31 but they that wait upon Jehovah shall renew [their] strength: they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not tire; they shall walk, and not faint.
God's Assurance to Israel
41 1 Keep silence before me, islands; and let the peoples renew [their] strength: let them come near; then let them speak: let us draw near together to judgment. 2 Who raised up from the east him whom righteousness calleth to its foot? He gave the nations before him, and caused him to have dominion over kings; he gave them as dust to his sword, as driven stubble to his bow. 3 He pursued them, he passed on in safety, by a way he had never come with his feet. 4 Who hath wrought and done [it], calling the generations from the beginning? I, Jehovah, the first; and with the last, I [am] HE. 5 The isles saw [it], and feared; the ends of the earth trembled: they drew near, and came. 6 They helped every one his neighbour, and [each] said to his brother, Take courage. 7 And the artizan encouraged the founder, he that smootheth [with] the hammer him that smiteth on the anvil, saying of the soldering, It is good; and he fasteneth it with nails, that it be not moved. 8 But thou, Israel, my servant, Jacob, whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham, my friend 9 —thou whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, and called from the extremities thereof, and to whom I said, Thou art my servant, I have chosen thee and not rejected thee,
10 —Fear not, for I [am] with thee; be not dismayed, for I [am] thy God: I will strengthen thee, yea, I will help thee, yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. 11 Lo, all that are incensed against thee shall be ashamed and confounded; they that strive with thee shall be as nothing, and shall perish. 12 Thou shalt seek them, and shalt not find them—them that contend with thee; they that war against thee shall be as nothing, and as a thing of nought. 13 For I, Jehovah, thy God, hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee. 14 Fear not, thou worm Jacob, ye men of Israel; I will help thee, saith Jehovah, and thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel. 15 Behold, I have made of thee a new sharp threshing instrument having double teeth: thou shalt thresh and beat small the mountains, and shalt make the hills as chaff; 16 thou shalt fan them, and the wind shall carry them away, and the whirlwind shall scatter them; and thou shalt rejoice in Jehovah, thou shalt glory in the Holy One of Israel. 17 The afflicted and the needy seek water, and there is none; their tongue faileth for thirst: I, Jehovah, will answer them, [I], the God of Israel, will not forsake them. 18 I will open rivers on the bare heights, and fountains in the midst of the valleys; I will make the wilderness into a pool of water, and the dry land into water-springs. 19 I will give in the wilderness the cedar, acacia, myrtle, and oleaster; I will set in the desert the cypress, pine, and box-tree together; 20 that they may see, and know, and consider, and understand together, that the hand of Jehovah hath done this, and the Holy One of Israel hath created it.
The LORD's Challenge to False Gods
21 Produce your cause, saith Jehovah; bring forward your arguments, saith the King of Jacob. 22 Let them bring them forward, and declare to us what shall happen: shew the former things, what they are, that we may give attention to them, and know the end of them;—or let us hear things to come: 23 declare the things that are to happen hereafter, that we may know that ye are gods; yea, do good, or do evil, that we may be astonished, and behold it together. 24 Behold, ye are less than nothing, and your work is of nought; an abomination is he that chooseth you. ... 25 I have raised up one from the north, and he shall come,—from the rising of the sun, he who will call upon my name; and he shall come upon princes as on mortar, and as the potter treadeth clay. 26 Who hath declared [it] from the beginning, that we may know? and beforetime, that we may say, [It is] right? Indeed, there is none that declareth; no, none that sheweth; no, none that heareth your words. 27 The first, [I said] to Zion, Behold, behold them! and to Jerusalem, I will give one that bringeth glad tidings. 28 And I beheld, and there was no man; even among them,—and there was no counsellor, that, when I asked of them, could answer a word. 29 Behold, they are all vanity, their works are nought, their molten images are wind and emptiness.