Isaiah 36
International Standard Version

Sennacherib Attacks

1In the fourteenth year of King Hezekiah,a King Sennacherib of Assyria attacked all the fortified cities of Judah and captured them. 2Then the king of Assyria sent his field commander,b along with a veryc large army, from Lachish to King Hezekiah at Jerusalem. When the field commander stopped at the aqueduct at the Upper Pool on the road to Laundryman’s Field, 3Hilkiah’s son Eliakim, who was in charge of the palace, Shebna the secretary, and Asaph’s son Joah, the recorder, went out to him.

4The field commander told them:

“Tell Hezekiah, king of Judah,d ‘This is what the mighty king, the king of Assyria, has to say: What is this “guarantee” that makes you yourselfe rely on it?f 5Do you really think that guarantees alone can withstandg strategy and military strength? On whom are you now depending, that you’re rebelling against me? 6Take note: you’re relying on Egypt, that splintered reed of a staff, which pierces the palm of anyone who leans on it. This is what Pharaoh king of Egypt is like to everybody who depends on him!

7But if you allh say to me, “We are depending on the LORD our God”—isn’t he the one whose high places and altars Hezekiah removed, while he kept on telling Judah and Jerusalem, ‘You are to worship in front of this altar ini Jerusalem’?j 8Come now, all of you,k make a bet with my master, the king of Assyria: I will give you two thousand horses, if you can furnish riders for them! 9How, then, can you repulse even one officer froml the least of my master’s officials, when you are depending for yourselvesm on Egypt for chariots and horsemen? 10One other thing: have I really marched against this country to destroy it apart from the LORD’s direction?n The LORD himself ordered me, ‘March against this country too destroy it.’”p

11Then Eliakim, Shebna, and Joah replied to him,q “Please speak withr your servants—with uss —in Aramaic, since we understand it. Don’t speak to us in Hebrewt where the people sitting onu the wall can hear.”

12But the field commander asked, “Was it only to all of you and to yourv master that my master sent me to speak these things? Wasn’t it also to the men sitting on the wall—who, like you, will have to eat their own excrement and drink their own urine?”

13Then thew commander stood up and shouted out loud in Hebrew:x

“Hear the words of the great king, the king of Assyria! 14This is what the king of Assyriay says: ‘Don’t let Hezekiah deceive you—for he cannot save you! 15Don’t let Hezekiah persuade you to rely on the LORD when he says, “The LORD will really deliverz us!” andaa “This city will never be handed over to the king of Assyria!” 16Don’t listen to Hezekiah, because this is what the king of Assyria says: ‘Make your peace with me and come out to me. Then everyone will eat from his own vine and from his own fig tree, and everyone will drink water from his own cistern, 17until I come and take you away to a land like your own land—tobb a land of grain and new wine, a land of bread and vineyards.’ 18Be careful not to let Hezekiah mislead you when he says, “The LORD will save us.” Has any god of any nation ever deliveredcc his country from thedd king of Assyria? 19Where are the gods of Hamath and Arpad? Where are the gods of Sephar-vaim? Have they saved Samaria from me?ee 20Who among all the gods of these countries has deliveredff their land from me?gg How then can the LORD deliverhh Jerusalem from me?’”ii

21But the people remained silent and didn’t respond to him with so much as a single word, because the king had commanded, “Don’t answer him.”

22Then Hilkiah’s son Eliakim, who was in charge of the palace, Shebna the secretary, and Asaph’s son Joah, the recorder, approached Hezekiah with their clothes torn,jj and let him know what the field commander had said.


Footnotes:
a 36:1 The Heb. name Hezekiah is usu. spelled Hizqiyah in 1QIsaa; 4QIsab MT spell the name Hizqiyahu.
b 36:2 Or sent Rab-shakeh
c 36:2 So 1QIsaa; MT LXX lack very
d 36:4 So 1QIsaa; 1QIsaa corrector deleted king of Judah; MT LXX lack king of Judah
e 36:4 So 1QIsaa; MT LXX lack yourself
f 36:4 So 1QIsaa; MT LXX lack on it
g 36:5 Lit. that words alone equal
h 36:7 So 1QIsaa LXX; MT reads you (sing.)
i 36:7 So 1QIsaa MT; LXX lacks while he kept on telling Judah and Jerusalem, ‘You are to worship in front of this altar in Jerusalem’
j 36:7 So 1QIsaa; 1QIsaa corrector deleted in Jerusalem; the Heb. lacks in Jerusalem
k 36:8 So 1QIsaa LXX; MT reads you (sing.)
l 36:9 So 1QIsaa; MT reads one of
m 36:9 So 1QIsaa; MT reads yourself
n 36:10 1QIsaa MT lack ‘s direction
o 36:10 So 1QIsaa; MT reads and
p 36:10 So 1QIsaa MT; LXX lacks The LORD himself ordered me, ‘March against this country to destroy it.’
q 36:11 So 1QIsaa LXX; MT reads to the field commander
r 36:11 So 1QIsaa; MT reads to
s 6:11 So 1QIsaa; MT LXX lack —with us—
t 36:11 Lit. in these words; so 1QIsaa; MT LXX read in the Judean language
u 36:11 So 1QIsaa; the Heb. lacks sitting; cf. LXX
v 36:12 So 1QIsaa (pl.); MT reads your (sing.) master and to you (sing.)
w 36:13 So 1QIsaa; the Heb. lacks the
x 36:13 Or the Judean language
y 36:14 So 1QIsaa; MT LXX lack of Assyria
z 36:15 Or save
aa 36:15 So 1QIsaa LXX; MT lacks and
bb 36:17 So 1QIsaa; the Heb. lacks to
cc 36:18 Or saved
dd 36:18 Lit. the hand of the
ee 36:19 Lit. from my hand
ff 36:20 Or saved
gg 36:20 Lit. from my hand
hh 36:20 Or saved
ii 36:20 Lit. from my hand
jj 36:22 i.e. as a symbol of pending disaster



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