1After Hezekiah's faithful work, Sennacherib, king of Assyria, invaded Judah and attacked its fortified towns, planning to conquer them for himself.
2When Hezekiah saw that Sennacherib had come to attack Jerusalem,
3he talked with his army commanders about blocking up the water sources that lay outside the city. This is what they did.
4They directed a large group of workers to block all the springs as well as the stream flowing nearby. “Why should the kings of Assyria come here and find plenty of water?” they asked.
5Hezekiah set to work and rebuilt all the parts of the wall that had fallen down and constructed towers on it. He also built another wall outside the first wall. He reinforced the Millo in the city of David. He also made a large quantity of weapons and shields.
6Hezekiah put army commanders in charge of the people. Then he summoned the people to gather in the square at the city gate. He spoke to them confidently, telling them,
7“Be strong and be brave! Don't be afraid or discouraged because of the king of Assyria with his large army, for there are more with us than with him.
8He has human help, but we have the Lord God on our side to help us and fight our battles.” The people were encouraged by this speech of Hezekiah, king of Judah.
9Some time later, when Sennacherib was attacking the town of Lachish with his armies, he sent his officers to Jerusalem with this message for Hezekiah, king of Judah, and for everyone from Judah living there.
10“This is what Sennacherib, king of Assyria, says. What are you going to trust in to help you survive when I come to attack Jerusalem?
11Can't you see that in reality Hezekiah is telling you to die from starvation and thirst when he tells you, ‘The Lord our God will save us from the king of Assyria’?
12Wasn't it Hezekiah who destroyed the high places and altars of this god and told Judah and Jerusalem, ‘You must worship at this one altar, and offer sacrifices on it alone’?
13Don't you know what I and my fathers have done to all the nations of the earth? None of their gods could save them or their lands from me!
14Which one of all these gods of these nations that my fathers destroyed has been able to save them from me? So why would you think your god can save you from me?
15So don't let Hezekiah fool you, and don't let him mislead you like this. Don't trust him, for no god of any nation or kingdom has been able to save their people from me or from my fathers. So it's even less possible for your god to save you from me!”
16Sennacherib's officers continued criticizing the Lord God and his servant Hezekiah.
17Sennacherib also wrote letters insulting the Lord, the God of Israel, taunting him by saying, “In the same way the gods of the nations did not save their people from me, so the god of Hezekiah will not save his people from me either.”
18The Assyrians also shouted this out in Hebrew to the people of Jerusalem standing on the wall to frighten and to terrify them so that the city would be surrendered.
19They talked about the God of Jerusalem like they did about the gods of the other nations, gods made by human beings.
20King Hezekiah and the prophet Isaiah, son of Amoz, appealed about this in prayer to the God of heaven.
21The Lord sent an angel who wiped out every warrior, leader, and commander in the camp of the Assyrian king. So he returned home in disgrace. When he went into the temple of his god, some of his own sons killed him with their swords.
22The Lord saved Hezekiah and the people of Jerusalem from King Sennacherib of Assyria and all other enemies, giving them peace in every direction.
23From then on he was very well respected by all the nations, and many brought offerings to Jerusalem for the Lord and valuable gifts for Hezekiah, king of Judah.
24Around that time Hezekiah fell sick and was about to die. So he prayed to the Lord, who replied by healing him and giving him a miraculous sign.
25But because he had become proud, Hezekiah did not acknowledge the gift he'd been given. So the Lord's anger fell on him, and on Judah and Jerusalem.
26Then Hezekiah apologized for his arrogance, as did the people of Jerusalem, and the Lord's anger no longer fell on them during Hezekiah's lifetime.
27Hezekiah was very rich and highly honored, and he built treasury storerooms to hold silver, gold, precious stones, spices, shields, and all kinds of valuable things.
28He constructed buildings to store supplies of grain, new wine, and olive oil, and stalls for all kinds of animals, including cattle and sheep.
29He built many towns, and he owned large herds of cattle and flocks of sheep, for God had made him very wealthy.
30Hezekiah blocked off the outlet of the upper Gihon spring and made the water flow down to the west side of the City of David. Hezekiah was successful in everything he did.
31But when ambassadors of the rulers of Babylon came to him to ask about the miraculous sign that had happened in the country, God left him to himself test him, so he could know Hezekiah's true thinking.
32The rest of what Hezekiah did, including his acts of loyalty, are recorded in the vision of the prophet Isaiah, son of Amoz, in the Book of the Kings of Judah and Israel.
33Hezekiah died and was buried in the upper cemetery of David's descendants. All Judah and the people of Jerusalem honored him at his death. His son Manasseh took over as king.