Isaiah 36:21

21 But the people remained silent and said nothing in reply, because the king had commanded, “Do not answer him.”

Read Isaiah 36:21 Using Other Translations

But they held their peace, and answered him not a word: for the king's commandment was, saying, Answer him not.
But they were silent and answered him not a word, for the king's command was, "Do not answer him."
But the people were silent and did not utter a word because Hezekiah had commanded them, “Do not answer him.”

What does Isaiah 36:21 mean?

John Gill's Exposition of the Bible
Isaiah 36:21

But they held their peace, and answered him not a word
The three ministers of Hezekiah; not as confounded, and unable to return an answer: they were capable of saying many things in proof that the Lord God was greater than the gods of the nations, and in favour of their king, Hezekiah, whom he had treated in a scurrilous manner; and could have objected to him the king of Assyria's breach of faith and honour, but these things they waved, and said nothing of; no doubt they said something to him, had some conference with him, or otherwise what were they sent as commissioners about? but they made no answer to his blasphemies and menaces: for the king's commandment was, saying, answer him not:
with respect to the above things; when he sent them, he might be aware that he would behave in such a rude, insolent, and blaspheming manner, and therefore the king gave them instructions how to conduct themselves, should this be the case. Musculus thinks the king was on the wall, and heard all himself, and gave orders to his ministers to make no reply; but this does not seem likely; what is here said of the ministers is also said of the people, ( 2 Kings 18:36 ) .

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