Hezekiah’s Illness and Recovery
(2 Chronicles 32:24–31; Isaiah 38:1–8)
1 In those days Hezekiah became mortally ill. The prophet Isaiah son of Amoz came to him and said, “This is what the LORD says: ‘Put your house in order, for you are about to die; you will not recover.’ ”
2 Then Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the LORD, saying, 3 “Please, O LORD, remember how I have walked before You faithfully and with wholehearted devotion; I have done what was good in Your sight.” And Hezekiah wept bitterly.
4 Before Isaiah had left the middle courtyard, a the word of the LORD came to him, saying, 5 “Go back and tell Hezekiah the leader of My people that this is what the LORD, the God of your father David, says: ‘I have heard your prayer; I have seen your tears. I will surely heal you. On the third day from now you will go up to the house of the LORD. 6 I will add fifteen years to your life. And I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria. I will defend this city for My sake and for the sake of My servant David.’ ”
7 Then Isaiah said, “Prepare a poultice of figs.” So they brought it and applied it to the boil, and Hezekiah recovered.
8 Now Hezekiah had asked Isaiah, “What will be the sign that the LORD will heal me and that I will go up to the house of the LORD on the third day?”
9 And Isaiah had replied, “This will be a sign to you from the LORD that He will do what He has promised: Would you like the shadow to go forward ten steps, or back ten steps?”
10 “It is easy for the shadow to lengthen ten steps,” answered Hezekiah, “but not for it to go back ten steps.”
11 So Isaiah the prophet called out to the LORD, and He brought the shadow back the ten steps it had descended on the stairway of Ahaz.
Hezekiah Shows His Treasures
12 At that time Merodach-baladan b son of Baladan king of Babylon sent letters and a gift to Hezekiah, for he had heard about Hezekiah’s illness. 13 And Hezekiah received the envoys and showed them all that was in his treasure house—the silver, the gold, the spices, and the precious oil, as well as his armory—all that was found in his storehouses. There was nothing in his palace or in all his dominion that Hezekiah did not show them.
14 Then the prophet Isaiah went to King Hezekiah and asked, “Where did those men come from, and what did they say to you?”
“They came from a distant land,” Hezekiah replied, “from Babylon.”
15 “What have they seen in your palace?” Isaiah asked.
“They have seen everything in my palace,” answered Hezekiah. “There is nothing among my treasures that I did not show them.”
16 Then Isaiah said to Hezekiah, “Hear the word of the LORD: 17 The time will surely come when everything in your palace and all that your fathers have stored up until this day will be carried off to Babylon. Nothing will be left, says the LORD. 18 And some of your descendants, your own flesh and blood, will be taken away to be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon.”
19 But Hezekiah said to Isaiah, “The word of the LORD that you have spoken is good.” For he thought, “Will there not at least be peace and security in my lifetime?”
Manasseh Succeeds Hezekiah
20 As for the rest of the acts of Hezekiah, along with all his might and how he constructed the pool and the tunnel c to bring water into the city, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah?
21 And Hezekiah rested with his fathers, and his son Manasseh reigned in his place.
4 a LXX and an alternate MT reading; the other alternate reads the middle of the city
12 b Some Hebrew manuscripts, LXX, and Syriac (see also Isaiah 39:1);MT Berodach-baladan
20 c Or watercourse or conduit