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The Catholic Study Bible A special version of the New American Bible, with a wealth of background information useful to Catholics.

Chapter 38

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Sickness and Recovery of Hezekiah. * 1In those days,* when Hezekiah was mortally ill, the prophet Isaiah, son of Amoz, came and said to him: “Thus says the LORD: Put your house in order, for you are about to die; you shall not recover.” d 2 Kgs 20, 1 . 2Then Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the LORD:

3“ O LORD, remember how faithfully and wholeheartedly I conducted myself in your presence, doing what was pleasing to you!” And Hezekiah wept bitterly. e 2 Kgs 18, 5f .

4Then the word of the LORD came to Isaiah: 5“Go, tell Hezekiah:* Thus says the LORD, the God of your father David: I have heard your prayer and seen your tears. I will heal you: in three days you shall go up to the LORD's temple; I will add fifteen years to your life. 6I will rescue you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria; I will be a shield to this city.” f Is 37, 35 .

21Isaiah then ordered a poultice of figs to be taken and applied to the boil, that he might recover. 22Then Hezekiah asked, “What is the sign that I shall go up to the temple of the LORD?”

7[Isaiah answered:] “This will be the sign for you from the LORD that he will do what he has promised: 8See, I will make the shadow cast by the sun on the stairway to the terrace of Ahaz* go back the ten steps it has advanced.” So the sun came back the ten steps it had advanced. g 2 Kgs 20, 9. 11 .

Hezekiah's Hymn of Thanksgiving. 9The song of Hezekiah, king of Judah, after he had been sick and had recovered from his illness:

10Once I said, “In the noontime of life* I must depart! To the gates of the nether world I shall be consigned for the rest of my years.” h Jb 17, 11; Ps 102, 25 . 11I said, “I shall see the LORD * no more in the land of the living. No longer shall I behold my fellow men among those who dwell in the world.” 12My dwelling, like a shepherd's tent, is struck down and borne away from me; You have folded up my life, like a weaver who severs the last thread.* Day and night you give me over to torment; i Jb 7, 6 . 13I cry out until the dawn. Like a lion he breaks all my bones; [day and night you give me over to torment]. 14Like a swallow I utter shrill cries; I moan like a dove. My eyes grow weak, gazing heavenward: O Lord, I am in straits; be my surety!

15What am I to say or tell him?* He has done it! I shall go on through all my years despite the bitterness of my soul. 16Those live whom the LORD protects; yours…the life of my spirit.* You have given me health and life; 17thus is my bitterness transformed into peace. You have preserved my life from the pit of destruction, When you cast behind your back all my sins.* 18For it is not the nether world that gives you thanks,* nor death that praises you; Neither do those who go down into the pit await your kindness. j Pss 6, 6; 88, 11–13 . 19The living, the living give you thanks, as I do today. Fathers declare to their sons, O God, your faithfulness. 20The LORD is our savior; we shall sing to stringed instruments In the house of the LORD all the days of our life.

Notes:

d: 2 Kgs 20, 1 .

e: 2 Kgs 18, 5f .

f: Is 37, 35 .

g: 2 Kgs 20, 9. 11 .

h: Jb 17, 11; Ps 102, 25 .

i: Jb 7, 6 .

j: Pss 6, 6; 88, 11–13 .

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