STAYING SPIRITUALLY ALERT
Isaiah 36:1-39:8 March 29 2009
These chapter proceeds in the history of Hezekiah. Here
is, His sickness, and the sentence of death he received
within himself . His prayer in his sickness . The answer of
peace which God gave to that prayer, assuring him that he
should recover, that he should live fifteen years yet, that
Jerusalem should be delivered from the king of Assyria, and
that, for a sign to confirm his faith herein, the sun should go
back ten degrees . And this we read and opened before,
(2Kings. 20:1), But, Here is Hezekiah’s thanksgiving for his
recovery, which we had not before . To which are added the
means used , and the end the good man aimed at in desiring
to recover . This is a chapter which will entertain the thoughts,
direct the devotions, and encourage the faith and hopes of
those that are confined by bodily distempers; it visits those
that are visited with sickness.
1. His sickness , and the sentence of death he received
within himself (Isaiah 38:1-60)
Isa. 38:1 In those days Hezekiah became ill and was at the
point of death. The prophet Isaiah son of Amoz went to him
and said, “This is what the LORD says: Put your house in order,
because you are going to die; you will not recover.” 38:2
Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the LORD,
38:3 “Remember, O LORD, how I have walked before you
faithfully and with wholehearted devotion and have done what
is good in your eyes.” And Hezekiah wept bitterly. 38:4 Then
the word of the LORD came to Isaiah: 38:5 “Go and tell
Hezekiah, ‘This is what the LORD, the God of your father David,
says: I have heard your prayer and seen your tears; I will add
fifteen years to your life. 38:6 And I will deliver you and this
city from the hand of the king of Assyria. I will defend this city.
In those days . Sometime before Sennacherib’s invasion of
701 B.C. (Isa.38:6). Isaiah . He is prominent in this historical
interlude (Isa. 36-39). Put your house in order . (2Kings 20:1).
You are going to die . Elisha similarly predicted the death of
Ben-hadad (2Kings 8:9-10). (2King 20:1). Wall. Perhaps of the
nearby temple. Prayed . Hezekiah apparently had no son and
successor to the throne yet (Isa.39:7; 2Kings 21:1).
Wholeheated devotion . Like David (1Kings 11:4), Hezekiah
was truly faithful (Isa .36:7; 2Kings 18:3-5). Deliver. . . This
city . (Isa. 31:5; 37:35).
2. The pride and folly of Hezekiah (Isaiah 39:1-2)
Isa. 39:1 At that time Merodach-baladan son of Baladan king
of Babylon sent Hezekiah letters and a gift, because he had
heard of his illness and recovery. 39:2 Hezekiah received
the envoys gladly and showed them what was in his
storehouses —the silver, the gold, the spices, the fine oil,
his entire armory and everything found among his treasures.
There was nothing in his palace or in all his kingdom that
Hezekiah did not show them.
Merodach -Baladan . Reigned 721-710 B.C. and again later
(2Kings 20:12). Babylon . (Isa. 13:1). Sent . . . Letters and a
gift . Merodach-baladan probably wanted Hezekiah’s support
in a campaign against Assyria. During his career, he
organized several revolts against his hated neighbors.
(2Kings 20:12). Silver . . . Gold. . . Treasures . (2Chron.
32:27-29,31). Probably Hezekiah was seeking help from the
Babylonians against the Assyrian threat ( 2Kings 20:13). But
the information gained during this ill-advised tour escorted
by Hezekiah would be valuable to Merodach-baladan’s powerful
successors (Isa 39:5-7).
3. Hezekiah’s penitent and patient submission to this
sentence (Isaiah 39:5-8)
Isa. 39:5 Then Isaiah said to Hezekiah, “Hear the word of
the LORD Almighty: 39:6 The time will surely come when
everything in your palace, and all that your fathers have
stored up until this day, will be carried off to Babylon.
Nothing will be left, says the LORD. 39:7 And some of your
descendants, your own flesh and blood who will be born to
you, will be taken away, and they will become eunuchs in
the palace of the king of Babylon.” 39:8 “The word of the
LORD you have spoken is good,” Hezekiah replied. For he
thought, “There will be peace and security in my lifetime.”
Isaiah the prophet . Earlier God had sent Isaiah to confront
Ahaz (Isa.7:3); also Nathan’s rebuke of David (2Sam 12:1,7).
Word of the Lord . Contrast the word of hope in (Isa .38:4-6).
Carried off to Babylon . The first mention of Babylon as
Jerusalem’s conqueror, though (Isa.14:3-4) implied the
Babylonian captivity. The wickedness of Hezekiah’s son
Manasseh was a major cause of the captivity (2Kings 21:11-15).
(2Kings 20:17). Your descendants . Such as King Jehoiachin
(2Kings 24:15). Eunuchs . (Daniel1:3-6), where the Hebrew for
“court officials” (Daniel 1:3) can also be translated “eunuchs.”
King of Babylon . Nebuchadnezzar. Word . . . is good .
( 2Kings 20:19). Peace . . . In my lifetime . (2Kings 22:20).
“Peace” recurs in a refrain in (Isa.48:22; 57:21), dividing the
last 27 chapters into 3 sections of 9 chapters each (Isa .40-48;
The story , likewise we had before, (2Kings. 20:12), etc. It
is here repeated, not only as a very memorable and improvable
passage, but because it concludes with a prophecy of the
captivity in Babylon; and as the former part of the prophecy of
this book frequently referred to Sennacherib’s invasion and the
defeat of that, to which therefore the history of that was very
fitly subjoined, so the latter part of this book speaks much of
the Jews’ captivity in Babylon and their deliverance out of that,
to which therefore the first prediction of it, with the occasion
thereof, is very fitly prefixed. We have here . The pride and folly
of Hezekiah, in showing his treasures to the king of Babylon’s
ambassadors that were sent to congratulate him on his recovery .
Isaiah’s examination of him concerning it, in God’s name, and his
confession of it . The sentence passed upon him for it, that all
his treasures should, in process of time, be carried to Babylon ..
Hezekiah’s penitent and patient submission to this sentence .