The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Fourth Book of Kings
And now Ezechias fell sick, and was at death’s door; indeed, the prophet Isaias, son of Amos, visited him with this message from the Lord, Put thy affairs in order; it is death that awaits thee, not recovery.
At this Ezechias turned his face towards the wall, and prayed to the Lord thus:
Remember, Lord, I entreat thee, a life that has kept true to thee, an innocent heart; how I did ever what was thy will. And Ezechias wept bitterly.
Whereupon, before ever Isaias reached the middle of the court-yard, the word of the Lord came to him,
Go back, and tell Ezechias, the ruler of my people, Here is a message to thee from the Lord, the God of thy father David. I have listened to thy prayer, and marked thy tears; be it so, I have granted thee recovery. Within three days thou shalt be on thy way to the Lord’s temple,
and I will add fifteen years to thy life. And I will save thee and thy city from the power of the Assyrian king; I will be its protector, for my own honour and the honour of my servant David.
Then Isaias bade them bring a lump of figs, and when this was brought and laid on the king’s ulcer, he recovered.
When Ezechias asked what sign should be given him that his health would be restored, and that he would set foot in the Lord’s temple within three days,
Isaias told him, Here is thy proof that the Lord will keep his promise. Wouldst thou have the shadow on the sun-dial climb forward by ten hours, or travel backwards as much?
Why, said he, it were no great matter that it should advance ten hours; rather, by my way of it, let it travel ten hours backwards.
So the prophet Isaias made appeal to the Lord, and the shadow retraced the last ten hours it had advanced on the sun-dial of Achaz.✻
And now, hearing of his sickness, the king of Babylon, Berodach Baladan, son of Baladan, sent a letter and gifts to Ezechias.
Ezechias was delighted at the coming of these envoys, and shewed them his scented treasure-house, with its gold and silver and spices and rich ointments; the rooms where his ornaments were kept; all the wealth of his store-house. There was nothing in palace or domain but he shewed it to them.
Then the prophet Isaias gained audience of king Ezechias, and asked him, What message did these men bring, and whence had they come? They came to see me, said Ezechias, from a country that is far away, from Babylon.
And when Isaias asked what they had seen in his palace, he told them, They saw everything in my palace; I have no treasures I did not shew them.
And at that Isaias said to Ezechias, I have a message for thy hearing from the Lord.
Behold, a time is coming when all that is in thy house, all the treasures which thy fathers have amassed there in times past, will be taken away to Babylon; nothing shall be left of it, the Lord says.
And sons of thine, men of thy own line, of thy own stock, shall be carried off to be eunuchs in the palace of the kings of Babylon.
Why then, Ezechias said to Isaias, welcome be the word the Lord has spoken through thee! In my time at least may there be peace; may the promise hold good.✻
What else Ezechias did, the record of his great deeds, and of the pool and conduit by which he stored water in Jerusalem, is to be found in the Annals of the kings of Juda.
So Ezechias was laid to rest with his fathers, and the throne passed to his son Manasses.
The Holy Bible