Hezekiah’s Illness

In those days Hezeki′ah became sick and was at the point of death. And Isaiah the prophet the son of Amoz came to him, and said to him, “Thus says the Lord: Set your house in order; for you shall die, you shall not recover.” Then Hezeki′ah turned his face to the wall, and prayed to the Lord, and said, “Remember now, O Lord, I beseech thee, how I have walked before thee in faithfulness and with a whole heart, and have done what is good in thy sight.” And Hezeki′ah wept bitterly. Then the word of the Lord came to Isaiah: “Go and say to Hezeki′ah, Thus says the Lord, the God of David your father: I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; behold, I will add fifteen years to your life. I will deliver you and this city out of the hand of the king of Assyria, and defend this city.

“This is the sign to you from the Lord, that the Lord will do this thing that he has promised: Behold, I will make the shadow cast by the declining sun on the dial of Ahaz turn back ten steps.” So the sun turned back on the dial the ten steps by which it had declined.[a]

A writing of Hezeki′ah king of Judah, after he had been sick and had recovered from his sickness:

10 I said, In the noontide 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

in the land of the living;

I shall look upon man no more

among the inhabitants of the world.

12 My dwelling is plucked up and removed from me

like a shepherd’s tent;

like a weaver I have rolled up my life;

he cuts me off from the loom;

from day to night thou dost bring me to an end;[b]

13 I cry for help[c] until morning;

like a lion he breaks all my bones;

from day to night thou dost bring me to an end.[d]

14 Like a swallow or a crane[e] I clamor,

I moan like a dove.

My eyes are weary with looking upward.

O Lord, I am oppressed; be thou my security!

15 But what can I say? For he has spoken to me,

and he himself has done it.

All my sleep has fled[f]

because of the bitterness of my soul.

16 O Lord, by these things men live,

and in all these is the life of my spirit.[g]

Oh, restore me to health and make me live!

17 Lo, it was for my welfare

that I had great bitterness;

but thou hast held back[h] my life

from the pit of destruction,

for thou hast cast all my sins

behind thy back.

18 For Sheol cannot thank thee,

death cannot praise thee;

those who go down to the pit cannot hope

for thy faithfulness.

19 The living, the living, he thanks thee,

as I do this day;

the father makes known to the children

thy faithfulness.

20 The Lord will save me,

and we will sing to stringed instruments[i]

all the days of our life,

at the house of the Lord.

21 Now Isaiah had said, “Let them take a cake of figs, and apply it to the boil, that he may recover.” 22 Hezeki′ah also had said, “What is the sign that I shall go up to the house of the Lord?”


  1. Isaiah 38:8 The Hebrew of this verse is obscure
  2. Isaiah 38:12 Heb uncertain
  3. Isaiah 38:13 Cn: Heb obscure
  4. Isaiah 38:13 Heb uncertain
  5. Isaiah 38:14 Heb uncertain
  6. Isaiah 38:15 Cn Compare Syr: Heb I will walk slowly all my years
  7. Isaiah 38:16 Heb uncertain
  8. Isaiah 38:17 Cn Compare Gk Vg: Heb loved
  9. Isaiah 38:20 Heb my stringed instruments