The army of King Sennacherib of Assyria invaded Judah
1 After King Hezekiah had obeyed Yahweh’s instructions and had done all those things, King Sennacherib of Assyria came with his army and invaded Judah. He commanded his soldiers to surround the cities that had walls around them, thinking that they would break through those walls and conquer those cities. 2 When Hezekiah saw that Sennacherib had come with his army and that they intended to attack Jerusalem, 3-4 he consulted with his officials and army leaders. They said among themselves, “Why should we allow the king of Assyria and his army to come and find plenty of water to drink?” So they decided to stop the water from flowing outside the city. So a large group of men gathered together and blocked all the springs and the stream that flowed through that area. 5 Then they worked hard to repair all the sections of the city wall that had been broken, and they built watchtowers on the walls. They built another wall outside/around the wall that was already outside the city, and they strengthened the defenses on the sloping terraces on the east side of the area called ‘The City of David’. They also made a large number of weapons and shields.
6 Hezekiah appointed army commanders, and he gathered them in front of him in the square at one of the city gates, and he encouraged them by saying this to them: 7 “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or discouraged on account of the king of Assyria and the huge army that is with him, because Yahweh is with us, and his power is greater than their power. 8 They have to rely on the power of humans, but we have Yahweh our God to help us and to fight battles for us.” So the people became more confident because of what Hezekiah, the king of Judah, said.
9 Later, when Sennacherib and all his soldiers were surrounding Lachish city, he sent some officers to Jerusalem to give this message to King Hezekiah and to all the people of Judah who were there:
10 “I am Sennacherib, the great king of Assyria, and this is what I say: 'While you are staying in Jerusalem, my soldiers are surrounding the city. So why [RHQ] are you so confident? 11 Hezekiah says to you, “Yahweh our God will save us from being defeated by the army of the king of Assyria,” but he is misleading you. He wants you to die from having no food or water. 12 Isn’t Hezekiah the one who told his men to get rid of your god Yahweh’s shrines and altars on the hilltops, saying to you people of Jerusalem and other places in Judah, “You must worship at only one altar and burn sacrifices on only that altar”?
13-14 'Do you people not know what I and my ancestors have done to all the people-groups in other countries? We destroyed them all, and none of the gods of those nations were ever able to prevent my troops from conquering them! So how can your god prevent my soldiers from conquering you? 15 So do not allow Hezekiah to deceive you like this. Do not believe what he says, because no god of any nation or kingdom has ever been able to rescue his people from being conquered by my army and the armies of my ancestors. So certainly your god will not be able to rescue you from my power' .”
16 Sennacherib’s officers said more things to belittle Yahweh the God of the Israelis and Hezekiah, who served God well. 17 King Sennacherib wrote more letters insulting Yahweh, the God whom the Israelis belonged to/worshiped. He said things like this: “The gods worshiped by the people-groups in other countries did not rescue their people from my power. Similarly, the god of Hezekiah will not rescue his people from my power.” 18 Then King Sennachereb’s officers shouted in the Hebrew language to the people who were on the wall, in order to cause them to be terrified, thinking that as a result the army of Assyria could capture the city without a battle. 19 They belittled the God worshiped by the people of Jerusalem as they belittled the gods of the other people-groups of the world—saying that they were only idols made by humans.
20 Then King Hezekiah and the prophet Isaiah cried out to God, praying about this. 21 And that night Yahweh sent an angel who killed all the soldiers of Assyria and their leaders and their officers in the place where the king of Assyria and his army had set up their tents. So the king of Assyria left and returned to his own country, very disgraced. And one day when he went into the temple of his god, some of his sons struck him with their swords and killed him.
22 That is how Yahweh rescued Hezekiah and the people of Jerusalem from the power of Sennacherib, the king of Assyria, and from their other enemies. Yahweh took care of them (OR, gave them peace) everywhere in the country. 23 Many people brought offerings for Yahweh to Jerusalem, and also brought valuable gifts for King Hezekiah. And from that time, Hezekiah was highly respected/honored by the people of all the other nations.
Hezekiah became proud
24 About that time, Hezekiah became very ill. He was about to die. But he prayed to Yahweh, and Yahweh answered his prayer. He performed a miracle and healed Hezekiah. 25 But Hezekiah [SYN] was very proud, and he did not thank Yahweh for being kind to him. Therefore Yahweh was angry with him and and punished him and the people of Jerusalem and other places in Judah. 26 Then Hezekiah said that he was sorry for being proud, and the people of Jerusalem also said that they were sorry for their sins. So Yahweh did not punish them during the remaining years that Hezekiah was their king.
Hezekiah became very rich
27 Hezekiah became very rich and was greatly honored. His workers made storerooms for his silver and gold, and for his very valuable stones, and for spices and shields and other valuable things. 28 His workers also built buildings to store the grain and wine and olive oil that people produced and brought to him. They also made stalls for various kinds of cattle and pens for his flocks of sheep and goats. 29 They built towns and acquired for the king many flocks of sheep and goats and herds of cattle, because God had enabled him to become very rich.
30 Hezekiah was the one who told his workers to block the place where the water flows out of the Gihon Spring, and to build a tunnel through which the water flowed to the west side of the area called ‘The City of David’. He was able to do everything that he wanted to do. 31 But when messengers who were sent by the rulers of Babylon came and asked about the miracle that God had performed for him, God allowed Hezekiah to say what he himself wanted to say, in order to test whether or not Hezekiah would admit that God had performed a miracle.
32 A record of the other things that happened while Hezekiah was ruling, and the things that he did to please God, is on the scroll in which is written the vision that Yahweh gave to the prophet Isaiah. It is also written in the scroll called ‘The History of the Kings of Judah and Israel’. 33 When Hezekiah died, he was buried in the tombs where the most respected kings of Judah were buried. Everyone in Jerusalem and other places in Judah honored him. Then his son Manasseh became the king.