When King Hezekiah heard this, he tore his clothes1 and put on sackcloth2 and went into the temple3 of the LORD.
He sent Eliakim4 the palace administrator, Shebna5 the secretary, and the leading priests, all wearing sackcloth, to the prophet Isaiah son of Amoz.63
They told him, "This is what Hezekiah says: This day is a day of distress7 and rebuke and disgrace, as when children come to the point of birth8 and there is no strength to deliver them.
It may be that the LORD your God will hear the words of the field commander, whom his master, the king of Assyria, has sent to ridicule9 the living God,10 and that he will rebuke him for the words the LORD your God has heard.11 Therefore pray12 for the remnant13 that still survives."
When King Hezekiah's officials came to Isaiah,
Isaiah said to them, "Tell your master, 'This is what the LORD says: Do not be afraid14 of what you have heard--those words with which the underlings of the king of Assyria have blasphemed15 me.
Listen! I am going to put a spirit16 in him so that when he hears a certain report,17 he will return to his own country, and there I will have him cut down18 with the sword.' "
When the field commander heard that the king of Assyria had left Lachish,19 he withdrew and found the king fighting against Libnah.209
Now Sennacherib21 received a report22 that Tirhakah, the Cushitea23 king [of Egypt], was marching out to fight against him. When he heard it, he sent messengers to Hezekiah with this word:
"Say to Hezekiah king of Judah: Do not let the god you depend on deceive24 you when he says, 'Jerusalem will not be handed over to the king of Assyria.'2511
Surely you have heard what the kings of Assyria have done to all the countries, destroying them completely. And will you be delivered?2612
Did the gods of the nations that were destroyed by my forefathers27 deliver them--the gods of Gozan, Haran,28 Rezeph and the people of Eden29 who were in Tel Assar?
Where is the king of Hamath, the king of Arpad,30 the king of the city of Sepharvaim,31 or of Hena or Ivvah?"32