2 Chronicles 32: Sennacherib
threatens Jerusalem & Hezekiah's last days
Notes: The fuller
detail of Hezekiah is found in 2 Kings 18-20. This present chapter
is in many ways merely a summary of Hezekiah's activities which
show him in a better light than that found in 2 Kings.]
Jerusalem is threatened by Sennacherib of Assyria
all that Hezekiah had so faithfully done, Sennacherib king of
Assyria came and invaded Judah. He laid siege to the fortified
cities, thinking to conquer them for himself.
Hezekiah saw that Sennacherib had come and that he intended to
wage war against Jerusalem,
They prepare Jerusalem for a siege
consulted with his officials and military staff about blocking
off the water from the springs outside the city, and they helped
gathered a large group of people who blocked all the springs and
the stream that flowed through the land. ‘Why should the kings
of Assyria come and find plenty of water?' they said.
he worked hard repairing all the broken sections of the wall and
building towers on it. He built another wall outside that one
and reinforced the terraces of the City of David. He also made
large numbers of weapons and shields.
Hezekiah encourages his people
appointed military officers over the people and assembled them
before him in the square at the city gate and encouraged them
with these words:
strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or discouraged because
of the king of Assyria and the vast army with him, for there is
a greater power with us than with him.
him is only the arm of flesh, but with us is the Lord
our God to
help us and to fight our battles.' And the people gained confidence
from what Hezekiah the king of Judah said.
Sennacherib starts a propaganda war against Jerusalem
when Sennacherib king of Assyria and all his forces were laying
siege to Lachish, he sent his officers to Jerusalem with this
message for Hezekiah king of Judah and for all the people of Judah
who were there:
is what Sennacherib king of Assyria says: on what are you basing
your confidence, that you remain in Jerusalem under siege?
Hezekiah says, “The Lord
our God will
save us from the hand of the king of Assyria,” he is misleading
you, to let you die of hunger and thirst.
not Hezekiah himself remove this god's high places and altars,
saying to Judah and Jerusalem, “You must worship before one altar
and burn sacrifices on it”?
you not know what I and my predecessors have done to all the peoples
of the other lands? Were the gods of those nations ever able to
deliver their land from my hand?
of all the gods of these nations that my predecessors destroyed
has been able to save his people from me? How then can your god
deliver you from my hand?
do not let Hezekiah deceive you and mislead you like this. Do
not believe him, for no god of any nation or kingdom has been
able to deliver his people from my hand or the hand of my predecessors.
How much less will your god deliver you from my hand!'
officers spoke further against the Lord
God and against
his servant Hezekiah.
king also wrote letters ridiculing the Lord
, the God of
Israel, and saying this against him: ‘Just as the gods of the
peoples of the other lands did not rescue their people from my
hand, so the god of Hezekiah will not rescue his people from my
they called out in Hebrew to the people of Jerusalem who were
on the wall, to terrify them and make them afraid in order to
capture the city.
spoke about the God of Jerusalem as they did about the gods of
the other peoples of the world – the work of human hands.
Hezekiah calls on the Lord who saves them
Hezekiah and the prophet Isaiah son of Amoz cried out in prayer
to heaven about this.
sent an angel, who annihilated all the fighting men and the commanders
and officers in the camp of the Assyrian king. So he withdrew
to his own land in disgrace. And when he went into the temple
of his god, some of his sons, his own flesh and blood, cut him
down with the sword.
saved Hezekiah and the people of Jerusalem from the hand of Sennacherib
king of Assyria and from the hand of all others. He took care
of them on every side.
brought offerings to Jerusalem for the Lord
gifts for Hezekiah king of Judah. From then on he was highly regarded
by all the nations.
Hezekiah's pride, illness, repentance and salvation
those days Hezekiah became ill and was at the point of death.
He prayed to the Lord,
who answered him and gave him a miraculous sign.
Hezekiah's heart was proud and he did not respond to the kindness
shown him; therefore the Lord's
wrath was on him and on Judah and Jerusalem.
Hezekiah repented of the pride of his heart, as did the people
of Jerusalem; therefore the Lord's
wrath did not come on them during the days of Hezekiah.
had very great wealth and honour, and he made treasuries for his
silver and gold and for his precious stones, spices, shields and
all kinds of valuables.
also made buildings to store the harvest of grain, new wine and
olive oil; and he made stalls for various kinds of cattle, and
pens for the flocks.
built villages and acquired great numbers of flocks and herds,
for God had given him very great riches.
was Hezekiah who blocked the upper outlet of the Gihon spring
and channelled the water down to the west side of the City of
David. He succeeded in everything he undertook.
Hezekiah's last days
when envoys were sent by the rulers of Babylon to ask him about
the miraculous sign that had occurred in the land, God left him
to test him and to know everything that was in his heart.
other events of Hezekiah's reign and his acts of devotion are
written in the vision of the prophet Isaiah son of Amoz in the
book of the kings of Judah and Israel.
rested with his ancestors and was buried on the hill where the
tombs of David's descendants are. All Judah and the people of
Jerusalem honoured him when he died. And Manasseh
his son succeeded him as king.