2 Kings chapter .xviij.

In the third year of Hosea son of Ela, king of Israel reigned Hezekiah son of Ahaz king of Iuda. Twenty five years old was he, when he began to reign, and reigned twenty nine years in Ierusalem. His mother's name was Abi the daughter of Zachariah, and he did that pleased the LORD in all things, like to David his father. He put away the hillaltars, and brake the images and cut down the groves, and all to brake the brazen serpent that Moses made. For unto those days the children of Israel did burn sacrifice to it, and called it Nehustan. He trusted in the LORD God of Israel, so that after him came none like him among all the kings of Iuda, neither among them that went before him. He clave to the LORD and departed not from him, but kept his commandments which the LORD commanded Moses. And the LORD was with him. And whatsoever he took in hand he did it wisely. And he rebelled against the king of Assiria and served him not. He beat the Philistines even unto Azah and the coasts thereof, both in castles of garrisons and strong cities too.
And the fourth year of king Hezekiah, which was the seventh year of Hosea son of Elah king of Israel, came Salmanasar king of Assiria upon Samaria and besieged it. And they took it at the end of three years, which was the sixth of Hezekiah: that is to say the ninth year of Hosea king of Israel, was Samaria won. And the king of Assiria did carry away Israel unto Assiria, and put them in Halah and in Habor on the river of Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes: because they would not hearken unto the voice of the LORD their God. But transgressed his appointment, and all that Moses the servant of the LORD commanded, and would neither hear nor do. The fourteenth year of king Hezekiah came Sennaherib king of Assiria against all the strong cities of Iuda and took them. Whereupon Hezekiah king of Iuda sent to the king of Assiria to Lachis saying: I have offended. But depart from me, and what thou puttest on me that I will bear. And the king of Assiria appointed unto Hezekiah king of Iuda three hundredth talents of silver and thirty talents of gold. And Hezekiah gave him all the silver that was found in the house of the LORD and also in the treasure of the king's house. And the said season Hezekiah rent off the doors of the temple of the LORD and the pillars, which the said Hezekiah king of Iuda covered over, and gave them to the king of Assiria.
And the king of Assiria sent Tharthan and Rabsaris, and Rabsakeh from Lachis to king Hezekiah with a great Host to Ierusalem. And they went up and came to Ierusalem, and went and stood by the conduit of the uppermost pool which is in the way to the fuller's field, and called to the king. And there came out to them, Eliakim the son of Helkiah steward of household, and Sobnah the scribe, and Ioah the son of Asaph, the recorder; And then Rabsakeh said unto them. Tell ye Hezekiah I pray you: Thus sayeth the great king, the king of Assiria; What confidence is this that thou hast? thou wilt haply speak a light word, that thou hast counsel and power to make war. On whom then dost thou trust, that thou rebellest against me? dost thou trust to the staff of this broken reed Egypt, on which if a man lean it will run into his hand and pierce it: For even so is Pharao king of Egypt unto all that trust on him. If ye say unto me, we trust in the LORD our God. Is not that he whose hillaltars and other altars too, Hezekiah hath put down, and hath said to Iuda and Ierusalem, bow yourselves before this altar here in Ierusalem. And now join thyself to my lord the king of Assiria, and I will deliver thee two thousand horses, if thou be able to set riders upon them: (and if thou be not) how then art thou able to resist one of the least dukes of my master's servants? or trustest thou to Egypt for chariots and horsemen? Moreover thinkest thou that I am come without the bidding of the LORD to this place to destroy it? nay: the LORD said to me: Go up to this land, and destroy it. Then said Eliakim the son of Helkiah and Sobnah and Ioah, to Rabsakeh: speak we pray thee to thy servants in the Sirians' language, for we understand it: and talk not with us in the Iews' tongue, in the ears of the people that are on the walls. And Rabsakeh said unto them: hath my master sent me only to thy master and to thee, to speak these words, or rather to the men that keep on the walls, that they shall eat their own dirt, and drink their own piss with you. And so Rabsakeh stood and cried with a loud voice in the Iews' language, and spake saying: hear the saying of the great king, the king of Assiria. Thus sayeth the king: Let not Hezekiah beguile you, for he is not able to deliver you out of mine hand: neither let Hezekiah make you trust to the LORD saying: the LORD will surely rid us, and this city shall not be delivered into the hands of the king of Assiria. Hearken not unto Hezekiah, for thus sayeth the king of Assiria. Deal kindly with me, and come out to me. And then eat every man of his own vine, and of his own fig tree, and drink every man of the water of his own well, till I come and fetch you to as good a land as yours is: a land of corn and wine, a land of bread and vineyards, a land of olive trees, of oil and of honey. And ye shall live and not die. And hearken not unto Hezekiah for he will beguile you, saying: the LORD shall deliver us. For have the Gods of the nations delivered any God his land, out of the hand of the king of Assiria? Where are the Gods of Hemath and of Arphad? where are the Gods of Sepharuaim of Ana and Auah? did they deliver Samaria out of mine hands? what God of any land hath delivered his land out of mine hand, that the LORD should deliver Ierusalem out of mine hand? But the people held their peace and answered him not a word: for the king had commanded saying: answer him not. Then Eliakim the steward of household, and Sobnah the scribe and Ioah the son of Asaph the recorder, came to Hezekiah with their clothes rent and told him the words of Rabsakeh.


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Praise the Everlasting Lord for His Faithful Word.