Then the angel of the Lord went forth
From heaven, at the command of the Lord, being one of his ministering spirits, sent forth by him, as for the protection of his people, so for the destruction of their enemies; this was the same night, either in which the Assyrian army sat down before Jerusalem, as say the Jews F24; or, however the same night in which the message was sent to Hezekiah; see ( 2 Kings 19:35 ) :
and smote in the camp of the Assyrians an hundred and fourscore and
five thousand men:
a prodigious slaughter indeed! which shows the power and strength of an angel. Josephus F25 says they were smitten with a pestilential disease; but other Jewish writers say it was by fire from heaven, which took away their lives, but did not consume their bodies, nor burn their clothes; but, be that as it will, destroyed they were:
and when they arose early in the morning:
those of the army that survived; Sennacherib, and his servants about him; or Hezekiah, and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, that were besieged:
behold, they were all dead corpses;
the whole army, excepting a few; this may well be expressed with a note of admiration, "behold!" for a very wonderful thing it was.
F24 T. Bab. Sanhedrin: fol. 95. 1.
F25 Antiqu. l. 10. c. 1. sect. 5.