Later, when Sennacherib king of Assyria and all his forces were laying siege to Lachish,1 he sent his officers to Jerusalem with this message for Hezekiah king of Judah and for all the people of Judah who were there:
"This is what Sennacherib king of Assyria says: On what are you basing your confidence,2 that you remain in Jerusalem under siege?
When Hezekiah says, 'The LORD our God will save us from the hand of the king of Assyria,' he is misleading3 you, to let you die of hunger and thirst.
Did not Hezekiah himself remove this god's high places and altars, saying to Judah and Jerusalem, 'You must worship before one altar4 and burn sacrifices on it'?
"Do you not know what I and my fathers 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?514
Who of all the gods of these nations that my fathers destroyed has been able to save his people from me? How then can your god deliver you from my hand?
Now do not let Hezekiah deceive6 you and mislead you like this. Do not believe him, for no god of any nation or kingdom has been able to deliver7 his people from my hand or the hand of my fathers.8 How much less will your god deliver you from my hand!"
Sennacherib's officers spoke further against the LORD God and against his servant Hezekiah.
The king also wrote letters9 insulting10 the LORD, the God of Israel, and saying this against him: "Just as the gods11 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 hand."
Then 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.
They spoke about the God of Jerusalem as they did about the gods of the other peoples of the world--the work of men's hands.12