The Vision of Isaiah

Chapter 38

Hezekiah, having received a message of death, by prayer has his life lengthened, 1-7. The sun goes ten degrees backward for a sign of that promise, 8. His song of thanksgiving, 9-22.

1 In those days Hezekiah was sick with a mortal disease. 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, and not live.'" 2 Then Hezekiah turned his face toward the wall and prayed to the LORD, 3 And said, "Remember now, O LORD, I implore you, how I have walked before you in truth and with a perfect heart, and have done that which is good in your sight." And Hezekiah wept bitterly.

4 Then the word of the LORD came to Isaiah, saying, 5 "Go and say to Hezekiah, 'Thus says the LORD, the God of David your father: "I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears. Behold, I will add to your days fifteen years. 6 And I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria. And I will defend this city."'

7 "And this shall be a sign to you from the LORD that the LORD will do this thing that he has spoken: 8 Behold, I will bring back the shadow of the degrees, which has gone down on the sun-dial of Ahaz, ten degrees backward." So the sun returned ten degrees, by which degrees it had gone down.

9 [The writing of Hezekiah king of Judah when he had been sick and had recovered from his sickness.]

10 I said, "In the cutting off of my days,/
I shall go to the gates of the grave./
I am deprived of the remainder of my years."

11 I said, "I shall not see the LORD,/
even the LORD, in the land of the living./
I shall no longer behold man/
with the inhabitants of the world.

12 My dwelling is plucked up and carried away from me/
as a shepherd's tent./
I have cut off my life like a weaver./
He will cut me off with pining sickness./
From day even to night you will make an end of me.

13 I reckoned until morning, that as a lion,/
so he will break all my bones./
From day even to night you will make an end of me.

14 Like a crane or a swallow, so I chattered./
I mourned as a dove./
My eyes fail with looking upward./
O LORD, I am oppressed. Undertake for me.

15 What shall I say? He has both spoken to me,/
and he himself has done it./
I shall go softly all my years/
in the bitterness of my soul.

16 O Lord, by these things men live,/
and in all these things is the life of my spirit./
So you will recover me and make me to live.

17 Behold, for peace I had great bitterness./
But you have in love to my soul delivered it/
from the pit of corruption,/
for you have cast all my sins behind your back.

18 For the grave cannot praise you,/
death cannot celebrate you./
Those who go down into the pit/
cannot hope for your truth.

19 The living, the living, he shall praise you,/
as I do this day./
The father shall make known your truth to the children.

20 The LORD was ready to save me;/
therefore, we will sing my songs to the stringed instruments/
all the days of our life in the house of the LORD."

21 For Isaiah had said, "Let them take a lump of figs and lay it for a plaster upon the boil, and he will recover." 22 Hezekiah also had said, "What is the sign that I shall go up to the house of the LORD?"


Matthew Henry Commentary - Isaiah, Chapter 38[➚]