Isaiah 38:10-20

10 I said, 1In the middle[a] of my days I must depart; I am consigned to the gates of Sheol for the rest of my years.
11 I said, I shall not see the LORD, the LORD 2in the land of the living; I shall look on man no more among the inhabitants of the world.
12 My dwelling is plucked up and removed from me 3like a shepherd's tent; 4like a weaver 5I have rolled up my life; 6he cuts me off from the loom; 7from day to night you bring me to an end;
13 8I calmed myself[b] until morning; like a lion 9he breaks all my bones; from day to night you bring me to an end.
14 Like 10a swallow or a crane I chirp; 11I moan like a dove. 12My eyes are weary with looking upward. O Lord, I am oppressed; 13be my pledge of safety!
15 What shall I say? For he has spoken to me, and he himself has done it. 14I walk slowly all my years because of the bitterness of my soul.
16 15O Lord, by these things men live, and in all these is the life of my spirit. Oh restore me to health and make me live!
17 16Behold, it was for my welfare that I had great bitterness; 17but in love you have delivered my life from the pit of destruction, 18for you have cast all my sins behind your back.
18 19For Sheol does not thank you; death does not praise you; those who go down to the pit do not hope for your faithfulness.
19 The living, the living, he thanks you, as I do this day; 20the father makes known to the children your faithfulness.
20 The LORD will save me, and we will play my music on stringed instruments all the days of our lives, 21at the house of the LORD.

Isaiah 38:10-20 Meaning and Commentary


This chapter gives an account of Hezekiah's sickness, recovery, and thanksgiving on that account. His sickness, and the nature of it, and his preparation for it, as directed to by the prophet, Isa 38:1, his prayer to God upon it, Isa 38:2,3 the answer returned unto it, by which he is assured of living fifteen years more, and of the deliverance and protection of the city of Jerusalem from the Assyrians, Isa 38:4-6, the token of his recovery, the sun going back ten degrees on the dial of Ahaz, Isa 38:7,8, a writing of Hezekiah's upon his recovery, in commemoration of it, Isa 38:9, in which he represents the deplorable condition he had been in, the terrible apprehensions he had of things, especially of the wrath and fury of the Almighty, and his sorrowful and mournful complaints, Isa 38:10-14, he observes his deliverance according to the word of God; expresses his faith in it; promises to retain a cheerful sense of it; owning that it was by the promises of God that he had lived as other saints did; and ascribes his preservation from the grave to the love of God to him, of which the forgiveness of his sins was an evidence, Isa 38:15-17, the end of which salvation was, that he might praise the Lord, which he determined to do, on stringed instruments, Isa 38:18-20, and the chapter is closed with observing the means of curing him of his boil; and that it was at his request that the sign of his recovery was given him, Isa 38:21,22.

Cross References 21

  • 1. [Psalms 102:24]
  • 2. Psalms 27:13; [Psalms 88:5]
  • 3. [2 Corinthians 5:1]
  • 4. Job 7:6
  • 5. [Hebrews 1:12]
  • 6. Job 6:9
  • 7. [Job 4:20; Psalms 73:14]
  • 8. [Psalms 30:5]
  • 9. [Psalms 38:3]
  • 10. [Jeremiah 8:7]
  • 11. Isaiah 59:11
  • 12. Psalms 69:3
  • 13. Psalms 119:122; [Psalms 86:17; Hebrews 7:22]
  • 14. 1 Kings 21:27
  • 15. Deuteronomy 8:3
  • 16. Psalms 119:67, 75
  • 17. [Psalms 103:12; Micah 7:19]
  • 18. [Psalms 103:12; Micah 7:19]
  • 19. Psalms 88:10-12; Psalms 115:17; [Ecclesiastes 9:10]
  • 20. Deuteronomy 4:9; Deuteronomy 6:7; Psalms 78:3, 4
  • 21. 2 Kings 20:5

Footnotes 2

  • [a]. Or In the quiet
  • [b]. Or (with Targum) I cried for help
The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.