1. When King Hezekiah heard this he tore his clothes, covered himself with sackcloth and went to the house of Yahweh.

2. He sent Eliakim, Shebna and the elders among the priests, all wearing sackcloth, to the prophet Isaiah, son of Amoz.

3. And they said to Isaiah, "This is what Hezekiah says: 'Today is a day of distress, rebuke and disgrace, as when children come to birth and there is no strength to deliver.

4. May your God hear the words of the field commander, whom his master the king of Assyria has sent. May Yahweh your God rebuke him for the words he said, insulting the living God. Therefore offer a prayer for the few of us that are left."

5. When King Hezekiah's officials came to Isaiah,

6. he said to them: "Tell your master this word of Yahweh: Do not fear because of what you heard when the servants of the king of Assyria insulted me. Listen!

7. I will let him be disturbed by certain news, so he will return to his country and there I will have him slain by the sword."

8. The field commander returned and found the king of Assyria fighting against Libnah, for he had heard that the king had left Lachish.

9. This was because King Sennacherib had heard that Tirhakah, the Cushite king of Egypt, was going out to fight him. Again Sennacherib sent messengers to Hezekiah with these words,

10. "Say to Hezekiah king of Judah that his God in whom he trusts might deceive him in saying that Jerusalem will not be given into the hands of the king of Assyria.

11. Surely you have heard what the kings of Assyria have done to all the lands they have destroyed! And will you be spared?

12. Have the gods saved the nations that my fathers destroyed? Gozan and Haran, Rezeph and the sons of Eden who were in Telassar?

13. Where is the king of Hamath, the king of Arpad, the kings of the cities of Sepharvaim, of Hena and of Ivvah?"

14. Hezekiah took the letter from the messengers and when he had read it he went to the house of Yahweh where he unrolled the letter

15. and prayed saying,

16. "O Yahweh, God of hosts and God of Israel, enthroned above the cherubim! You alone are God over all the kingdoms of the earth, give ear Yahweh and hear!

17. Open your eyes and see! Listen to all the words of Sennacherib who has sent men to insult the living God!

18. It is true, Yahweh, that the kings of Assyria have laid waste all the countries of the earth.

19. They have thrown their gods into the fire and destroyed them, for they were not true gods but made of wood and stone by human hands.

20. Now, O Yahweh our God, save us from his hand and let all the kingdoms of the earth know that you alone, Yahweh, are God."

21. Then Isaiah, son of Amoz, sent word to Hezekiah: "You have called upon Yahweh and he has heard your prayer regarding Sennacherib, king of Assyria. This is what Yahweh has spoken against him:

22. The Virgin Daughter of Zion despises and scorns you; the Daughter of Jerusalem shakes her head behind you.

23. Whom have you insulted and blasphemed? Against whom have you raised your voice and lifted up your brow? Against the Holy One of Israel!

24. Through your servants you have insulted Yahweh. For you have said: With my numerous chariots, I have climbed the heights of the mountains, the topmost recesses of Lebanon. I have felled its tallest cedars and its choicest fir trees. I have reached the remotest heights of its border, the best of its forests.

25. I have dug wells and drunk waters; I dried up with the sole of my foot all the streams of Egypt.

26. But have you not heard how I decreed it long ago? I have just brought to pass what I planned from days of old: to lay waste fortified cities, to turn them into heaps of ruins.

27. Shorn of power, their inhabitants have been dismayed and confounded; they have been as the grass and green plants in the field, as the grass on the housetops, as corn scorched before it blooms.

28. I know whenever you rise or sit, whenever you come or go.

29. Because of your rage against me and of your arrogance that has reached my ears, I will put my hook in your nose and my bridle in your mouth, and I will turn you back on the way by which you came.

30. This will be a sign for you, O Hezekiah: This year you will eat the gleaning of the fields and next year the self-sown grain, but in the third year sow and reap, plant vines and eat the fruit.

31. A remnant of the people of Judah shall take root below and produce fruit above.

32. For a remnant will come from Jerusalem and survivors from Mount Zion. The zeal of Yahweh of hosts will accomplish this. That is why Yahweh has spoken concerning the king of Assyria.

33. He shall not enter this city nor shoot his arrows.

34. He shall not raise a shield to oppose it nor build a siege ramp against it. He shall leave by the way he came and he shall not enter the city, word of Yahweh.

35. I will protect this city and so save it for my own sake and for the sake of David, my servant."

36. That night the angel of Yahweh went and struck one hundred and eighty-five thousand men in the Assyrian camp. When the people rose early next morning there lay all the corpses.

37. So Sennacherib, king of Assyria departed, returned home and lived in Nineveh.

38. While he was worshiping in the temple of his god, Nisroch, his sons Adrammelech and Sharezer slew him with the sword and then escaped to the land of Ararat. And Esarhaddon, his son, succeeded him as king.

Livros sugeridos

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