Hezekiah is Healed

1 In those days Hezekiah was stricken with a terminal illness.1 The prophet Isaiah son of Amoz visited him and told him, “This is what the Lord says, ‘Give your household instructions, for you are about to die; you will not get well.’2 2 He turned his face to the wall and prayed to the Lord, 3 Please, Lord. Remember how I have served you3 faithfully and with wholehearted devotion,4 and how I have carried out your will.”5 Then Hezekiah wept bitterly.6

4 Isaiah was still in the middle courtyard when the Lord told him,7 5 Go back and tell Hezekiah, the leader of my people: ‘This is what the Lord God of your ancestor David says: “I have heard your prayer; I have seen your tears. Look, I will heal you. The day after tomorrow8 you will go up to the Lord’s temple. 6 I will add fifteen years to your life and rescue you and this city from the king of Assyria. I will shield this city for the sake of my reputation and because of my promise to David my servant.”’9 7 Isaiah ordered, “Get a fig cake.” So they did as he ordered10 and placed it on the ulcerated sore, and he recovered.11

8 Hezekiah had said to Isaiah, “What is the confirming sign that the Lord will heal me and that I will go up to the Lord’s temple the day after tomorrow? 9 Isaiah replied, “This is your sign from the Lord confirming that the Lord will do what he has said. Do you want the shadow to move ahead ten steps or to go back ten steps?12 10 Hezekiah answered, “It is easy for the shadow to lengthen ten steps, but not for it13 to go back ten steps.” 11 Isaiah the prophet called out to the Lord, and the Lord14 made the shadow go back ten steps on the stairs of Ahaz.15

Messengers from Babylon Visit Hezekiah

12 At that time Merodach-Baladan16 son of Baladan, king of Babylon, sent letters and a gift to Hezekiah, for he had heard that Hezekiah was ill. 13 Hezekiah welcomed17 them and showed them his whole storehouse, with its silver, gold, spices, and high quality olive oil, as well as his armory and everything in his treasuries. Hezekiah showed them everything in his palace and in his whole kingdom.18 14 Isaiah the prophet visited King Hezekiah and asked him, “What did these men say? Where do they come from?” Hezekiah replied, “They come from the distant land of Babylon.” 15 Isaiah19 asked, “What have they seen in your palace?” Hezekiah replied, “They have seen everything in my palace. I showed them everything20 in my treasuries.” 16 Isaiah said to Hezekiah, “Listen to the word of the Lord, 17 Look, a time is21 coming when everything in your palace and the things your ancestors have accumulated to this day will be carried away to Babylon; nothing will be left,’ says the Lord. 18 Some of your very own descendants whom you father22 will be taken away and will be made eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon.’ 19 Hezekiah said to Isaiah, “The Lord’s word which you have announced is appropriate.”23 Then he added,24At least there will be peace and stability during my lifetime.”25

20 The rest of the events of Hezekiah’s reign and all his accomplishments, including how he built a pool and conduit to bring26 water into the city, are recorded in the scroll called the Annals of the Kings of Judah.27 21 Hezekiah passed away28 and his son Manasseh replaced him as king.

120:1tn Heb “was sick to the point of dying.” 220:1tn Heb “will not live.” 320:3tn Heb “walked before you.” For a helpful discussion of the background and meaning of this Hebrew idiom, see M. Cogan and H. Tadmor, II Kings (AB), 254. 420:3tn Heb “and with a complete heart.” 520:3tn Heb “and that which is good in your eyes I have done.” 620:3tn Heb “wept with great weeping.” 720:4tc Heb “and Isaiah had not gone out of the middle courtyard, and the word of the Lord came to him, saying.” Instead of “courtyard” (חָצֵר, khatser), the marginal reading, (Qere), the Hebrew consonantal text (Kethib) has הָעִיר (hair), “the city.” 820:5tn Heb “on the third day.” 920:6tn Heb “for my sake and for the sake of David my servant.” 1020:7tn Heb “and they got [a fig cake].” 1120:7tn Heb “and he lived.” 1220:9tn The Hebrew הָלַךְ (halakh, a perfect), “it has moved ahead,” should be emended to הֲיֵלֵךְ (hayelekh, an imperfect with interrogative he [ה] prefixed), “shall it move ahead.” 1320:10tn Heb “the shadow.” The noun has been replaced by the pronoun (“it”) in the translation for stylistic reasons. 1420:11tn Heb “he”; the referent (the Lord) has been specified in the translation for clarity. 1520:11tn Heb “on the steps which [the sun] had gone down, on the steps of Ahaz, back ten steps.”sn These steps probably functioned as a type of sundial. See HALOT 614 s.v. מַעֲלָה and M. Cogan and H. Tadmor, II Kings (AB), 256. 1620:12tc The MT has “Berodach-Baladan,” but several Hebrew, Greek, Aramaic, and Latin witnesses agree with the parallel passage in Isa 39:1 and read “Merodach-Baladan.” 1720:13tc Heb “listened to.” Some Hebrew mss, as well as the LXX, Syriac, and Vulgate versions agree with the parallel passage in Isa 39:2 and read, “was happy with.” 1820:13tn Heb “there was nothing which Hezekiah did not show them in his house and in all his kingdom.” 1920:15tn Heb “he”; the referent (Isaiah) has been specified in the translation for clarity. 2020:15tn Heb “there was nothing I did not show them.” 2120:17tn Heb “days are.” 2220:18tn Heb “Some of your sons, who go out from you, whom you father.” 2320:19tn Heb “good.” 2420:19tn Heb “and he said.” Many English versions translate, “for he thought.” The verb אָמַר (’amar), “say,” is sometimes used of what one thinks (that is, says to oneself). Cf. NAB, NASB, NIV, NRSV, NLT. 2520:19tn Heb “Is it not [true] there will be peace and stability in my days?” The rhetorical question expects the answer, “Yes, there will be peace and stability.” 2620:20tn Heb “and he brought.” 2720:20tn Heb “As for the rest of the events of Hezekiah, and all his strength, and how he made a pool and a conduit and brought water to the city, are they not written on the scroll of the events of the days of the kings of Judah?” 2820:21tn Heb “lay down with his fathers.”