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Deeper Commentary

2Ch 32:1 After these things, and this faithfulness-
A parade example of how faithfulness to God doesn't necessarily result in an easy, problem free life- contrary to Pentecostal teaching.

Sennacherib king of Assyria came, and entered into Judah, and encamped against the fortified cities, and thought to win them for himself-
He succeeded in taking all of Judah apart from Jerusalem. Isaiah describes the invasion as a flood of waters which engulfed Judah "up to the neck", the surviving head referring to Jerusalem and Hezekiah.

2Ch 32:2 When Hezekiah saw that Sennacherib had come, and that he was set to fight against Jerusalem-
The fall of Jerusalem at this time in judgment for Judah's sins at the time had been clearly foretold (Is. 22:14-19; 29:2-4). That this didn't happen was only because of God's willingness to change His timetable of judgment in response to human faith and repentance, as happened with Nineveh. Hezekiah had tried to buy off the Assyrians with money, even cutting off the gold of the temple to give them (2 Kings 18:14-16). But now he sees / realizes that this had all been in vain. Sennacherib intended to take Jerusalem.   


2Ch 32:3 he took counsel with his princes and his mighty men to stop the waters of the springs which were outside of the city-
Hezekiah's attempts to resist the fall of Jerusalem which had been prophesied (:2) were surely taken in faith that God would ammend those prophecies of judgment. Or we could read this as one more attempt by Hezekiah to bring about salvation by human strength and wit. He is mocked for trusting in such "counsel and strength" (2 Kings 18:20). Isaiah had earlier warned against trust in human "counsel" (s.w. Is. 5:19; 19:3). Woe was pronounced upon those (like Hezekiah?) who took counsel from men rather than God (Is. 30:1 s.w.). Prov. 25:28 LXX advises doing things with "counsel". As explained on Prov. 25:1, this may be a justification of Hezekiah, who dealt with the Assyrian crisis by saying he trusted in God's counsel to overcome the Assyrians (2 Kings 18:20 AV). Like Solomon, Hezekiah's Proverbs are all Divinely inspired and true, but he seems to insert into them a subtext of self justification.

And they helped him-
But Hezekiah's name means strengthened / helped by Yah. So we may get the impression that he was still trying to achieve salvation in his own strength rather than Yahweh's.


2Ch 32:4 So many people gathered together, and they stopped all the springs, and the brook that flowed through the midst of the land saying, Why should the kings of Assyria come, and find much water?-
LXX "Through the midst of the city". These attempts to defend Jerusalem in his own strength, by the work of "many people", are condemned in Is. 22:9-11 as a lack of faith in Yahweh. There appears now to be no such stream, the topography having changed over the centuries.

2Ch 32:5 He took courage-
AV "strengthened himself", rather than living out the truth of his own name 'Hezekiah', 'Yah will strengthen'. This continues a theme, of the kings of Judah strengthening or fortifying themselves, often when they first became king; but then having that human strength tested by God or removed. The same word is used repeatedly (1 Chron. 11:10; 2 Chron. 11:11,17; 12:13; 13:21; 17:1; 23:1; 25:3,11; 26:8,15; 29:3; 32:5). The lesson of course was that it is God's Angelic eyes who run to and fro in the land promised to Abraham, "to shew Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is perfect toward him" (2 Chron. 16:9).

And built up all the wall that was broken down, and raised it up to the towers, and the other wall outside, and strengthened Millo in the city of David-
Is. 22:9-11 specifically condemns this work for being done without looking to Yahweh in faith. The RV of that passage says that two walls were built up [here "the wall that was broken down... and the other wall outside"] with a reservoir for water in between them. 

And made weapons and shields in abundance-
Is. 22:8 says that the people "looked to the armour in the house of the forest" [of Lebanon], but not Yahweh; and when called [by Isaiah?] to repent and fast, instead they feasted (Is. 22:9-14).

2Ch 32:6 He set captains of war over the people, and gathered them together to him in the broad place at the gate of the city, and spoke to their hearts saying-
Presumably the reference is to the gate facing the Assyrian army, perhaps "the gate of Ephraim" or maybe "the comer gate".


2Ch 32:7 Be strong and courageous, don’t be afraid nor dismayed for the king of Assyria, nor for all the multitude who is with him; for there is a greater One with us than with him-
There is a marked contrast between this call to faith in Yahweh (and the people trusting Hezekiah's words, :8) and the condemnation of the people for their lack of faith at this time (Is. 22:9-14). But this is no contradiction. For faith and unbelief can all too easily be present in the human mind. Being "dismayed and terrified" is the term used of how Israel generally were terrified of Goliath, whereas David by faith wasn't (1 Sam. 17:11). The same phrase is also used in urging the people of Judah in Hezekiah's time to consider the Assyrians to be as a Goliath which they like David could vanquish (2 Chron. 32:7). The exiles likewise were urged not to be dismayed and terrified at the reproach of men (Is. 51:7; Jer. 30:10), very clearly making the history with Goliath relevant to their times.


2Ch 32:8 With him is an arm of flesh; but with us is Yahweh our God to help us, and to fight our battles. The people rested themselves on the words of Hezekiah king of Judah-
As discussed on :7, this was said when the people generally were not at all really believing in Yahweh but rather in their own strength (Is. 22:9-14). Perhaps having finished all the defensive work, Hezekiah's conscience smote him for not having done it in faith, and now he openly appeals to the people to simply believe in Yahweh to save them.


2Ch 32:9 After this, Sennacherib king of Assyria sent his servants to Jerusalem, (now he was before Lachish, and all his power with him), to Hezekiah king of Judah, and to all Judah who were at Jerusalem saying-
"
All his power" sets us up for the conflict between human strength and Divine power. We have just read and discussed how Hezekiah had matched this with his human strength, although perhaps observing the superior strength of Assyria, he has just urged the people to throw themselves in faith upon Yahweh alone.


2Ch 32:10 Thus says Sennacherib king of Assyria, In whom do you trust, that you remain under siege in Jerusalem?-
Sennacherib knew full well the very difficult living conditions they were enduring under siege. Is. 36:5 adds: "Now in whom do you trust, that you have rebelled against me?". That Hezekiah was trusting in someone or something else apart from his own strength was so obvious; and there may have been a genuine element of curiosity in the question, as well as it being a rhetorical question. Hezekiah's rebellion against Assyria was because of his trust in Yahweh; Zedekiah rebelled later against Babylon and yet Jerusalem fell (s.w. Jer. 52:3). Zedekiah attempted to copy the external behaviour of Hezekiah but without trust in Yahweh, and so it didn't work out. And so there abides a lesson for all of us who are tempted to imitate the external faith and action of others without having the same internal faith and trust.

2Ch 32:11 Doesn’t Hezekiah persuade you-
It seems Hezekiah was singlehandedly seeking to persuade the people to totally trust in Yahweh.

To give you over to die by famine and by thirst by saying, ‘Yahweh our God will deliver us out of the hand of the king of Assyria?’-
2 Kings 18:26,27 explain how this appeal was made directly to the ordinary people. Rabshakeh spoke in Hebrew and appears to have been an apostate Jew, for he was well aware of the situation within Jerusalem, and the words of Hezekiah about Yahweh. The Assyrian invasion is used as a basis upon which Jerusalem's latter day invasion will happen, and perhaps Rabshakeh will have his equivalent in the last days.

Hezekiah's faith that the city wouldn't fall was presumably based upon Isaiah's prophetic words; and yet Isaiah also speaks as if the city would fall, unless there was repentance in Judah. Perhaps Hezekiah really believed that the repentance of a minority would be counted by God as enough, and that their prayers would ensure the salvation of Zion. And this huge faith in Divine grace was rewarded.

Is. 36:14 adds: "Thus says the king, ‘Don’t let Hezekiah deceive you; for he will not be able to deliver you". This was part of his narrative, that the gods of the nations were "not able to deliver" them from the Assyrians (s.w. 2 Chron. 32:15). He encouraged them to see the one true God as just another god, another source of secular strength as good as anything else. Yahweh the one true God is not, however, just another religious system. There is something awesomely and radically different. Rabshakeh's words recognize that Hezekiah alone was seeking to lead the people to totally trust in Yahweh. His influence was considered hugely significant. As we noted on Is. 1:1, the reforms of Hezekiah were largely ineffective in encouraging the general populace towards spirituality. In accordance with that, Rabshakeh perceived Hezekiah as effectively seeking alone to persuade the people to trust Yahweh.


2Ch 32:12 Hasn’t the same Hezekiah taken away His high places and His altars, and commanded Judah and Jerusalem, saying, You shall worship before one altar, and on it you shall burn incense?-
Rabshakeh argues as if the high places and altars to the idols were actually used for Yahweh worship. And that was true. Judah justified their idol worship by claiming it was a form of Yahweh worship; and that is an abiding temptation for God's people of all ages. Rabshakeh mocked at the idea of a religion which had only one altar and high place; although that was indeed appropriate to the worship of the one true God who had given one specific way of approach to Him.


2Ch 32:13 Don’t you know what I and my fathers have done to all the peoples of the lands? Were the gods of the nations of the lands in any way able to deliver their land out of my hand?-
The historical account emphasizes that Rabshakeh continually reminded them of the strength of the hand of the Assyrians; the phrase occurs six times in 2 Chron. 32:13-15 alone. The hand of Yahweh is an Angelic title; as if he was really mocking the Angel of Israel.  There are also many references in Isaiah to the arm of the Lord delivering Israel at this time, which is again an Angelic title. Similarly, the latter day Assyrian will be destroyed by the arm of the Lord, as manifest in Christ and the Angels with Him.


2Ch 32:14 Who was there among all the gods of those nations which my fathers utterly destroyed, that could deliver his people out of my hand, that your God should be able to deliver you out of my hand?-
The point of course was made: Who or what indeed were any of those gods compared to Yahweh. And the true Israel of God were unlike any other nation.


2Ch 32:15 Now therefore don’t let Hezekiah deceive you, nor persuade you in this way, neither believe him; for no god of any nation or kingdom was able to deliver his people out of my hand, and out of the hand of my fathers. How much less will your God deliver you out of my hand?-
Is. 36:19 gives more detail: "Where are the gods of Hamath and Arpad? Where are the gods of Sepharvaim? Have they delivered Samaria from my hand?". Rabshakeh, knowing the prophecies of Isaiah, may be alluding to the common prophetic theme that Judah were in fact no better than Israel, and would face the same judgment. And he knew that Samaria, the ten tribes, had trusted in the gods of the surrounding nations. Hamath and Arpad were in Syria, and so probably Sepharvaim was likewise. Is. 8 and Is. 10:9-11 had condemned Israel for their trust in Syria against Assyria, and clearly their covenant with Syria had involved taking on the worship of their gods.


2Ch 32:16 His servants spoke yet more against Yahweh God, and against His servant Hezekiah-
Hezekiah as Yahweh's servant is contrasted with Rabshakeh and his gang who were Sennacherib's servants. The whole scene is a showdown between Yahweh and Sennacherib, who was playing God.


2Ch 32:17 He also wrote letters insulting Yahweh, the God of Israel, and to speak against Him saying, As the gods of the nations of the lands, which have not delivered their people out of my hand, so shall the God of Hezekiah not deliver His people out of my hand-
Goliath's defiance of Israel is a major theme (s.w. 1 Sam. 17:10,25,26,36,45). David's victory over Goliath was inspirational to other Israelites, just as the Lord's triumph on the cross should be to us. The history of Goliath would have been inspirational when the Assyrians likewise insulted or defied the living God, and again this is a theme of the record (2 Kings 19:4,16,22,23; 2 Chron. 32:17 s.w.). But I suggest the equivalent to David in all this was not Hezekiah but Isaiah. It was his faith and prayers which won the day. 


2Ch 32:18 They cried with a loud voice in the Jews’ language to the people of Jerusalem who were on the wall, to frighten them, and to trouble them; that they might take the city-
This very loud voice becomes the prototype for the great voice of Babylon (Jer. 51:55), akin to the great voice of Goliath the Philistine / Palestinian, which is to be answered by the far greater voice of Yahweh in the last days commanding the Angels to unleash judgment upon the latter day Assyrian confederacy (Joel 2:11; Rev. 16:1; 18:2). But in the immediate context, this "loud voice" is that of Is. 29:6 bringing destruction and judgment upon Jerusalem; they were condemned, but were saved by grace and God's respect of the prayers and repentance of a small minority. The loud voice of the "great king" of Assyria (Is. 36:13) is being set up as a parody of that of Yahweh, who is the supreme "great king" (s.w. Ps. 47:2; 95:3; Mal. 1:14).    

2Ch 32:19 They spoke of the God of Jerusalem, as of the gods of the peoples of the earth-
This is the classic challenge to faith; no other god achieved anything, therefore, the one true God can't either. But the point is that the gods of this world didn't achieve anything precisely because they are not God. The 'utter destruction' of conquered lands by Assyria is historically well attested. But the word has the sense of 'sanctified' in a religious sense; like the latter day "king of the north", the invader thought that they were serving their God by destroying people, and the barbarity of the destruction was a sign of how far they had devoted people and lands to their God. Jihadist Islam exactly fits this scenario.

Which are the work of men’s hands-
Passages like this almost define God by reason of His being uncreate. Whatever is created, is not God. And it follows that if we think that we have truly created anything, or that we are anything that God didn’t create, then we are in fact playing God. Understanding God as creator, in its true, deep and thought-through sense, leads to an understanding of grace. That all we have, are, were, shall ever be, is purely His gift. Likewise, to take for ourselves what is God’s is to play God. Materialism and selfishness are in this sense playing God.

2Ch 32:20 Hezekiah the king, and Isaiah the prophet the son of Amoz, prayed because of this, and cried to heaven-
Is. 37 records the prayer in more detail; see notes there.


2Ch 32:21 Yahweh sent an angel-
Is. 37:36 "The angel of Yahweh went out". He went out from the throne room of heaven, where the case had been as it were considered; see on Is. 37:4. Isaiah 37 is shot through with allusions to the Angel cherubim destroying the Assyrian host. The Angel went out- perhaps referring to Him physically going forth out of the temple where He dwelt to slay the Assyrians outside the walls of Jerusalem. This phrase 'went out' is nearly always used about literal physical movement, which we have seen is what  Angels literally do. Thus in the Ezekiel visions of the cherubim, they and the lightnings "went forth", physically and literally, in performing God's work. "Let my sentence come forth from Thy presence (Angelic language); let Thine eyes (Angels) behold the things that are equal", seeing they are involved with the 'coming forth', according to the parallelism of this verse. Similarly Job's satan Angel "went forth" from the presence of the Lord (Job 1:12). And so it happened that there were Angels on earth, as it were. Zech. 2:3 also has an Angel going forth to answer the prayers concerning  restoring the fortunes of Jerusalem (see Zech. 5:5 too). Ps. 81:5 describes the Angel going out through the land of Egypt in order to "remove (Israel's) shoulder from the burden". Ps. 81 is 'Angelic', following Ps. 80, which is another such Psalm. Heb. 1:14 also offers support: the Angels are "sent forth" to minister to us- by answering prayers offered in the spirit of Hezekiah's prayer here?

Who cut off all the mighty men of valour, and the leaders and captains, in the camp of the king of Assyria-
Not all were destroyed. The bodies of those who were, were spoiled by the Jerusalem Jews (Is. 33:4). The agent of destruction appears to have been fire and hail (Is. 29:6; 30:30), both of which may be used in the last days too.

So he returned with shame of face to his own land-
This was because "I will put a spirit in him" (Is. 37:7). Sennacherib retreated because God “put a spirit in him”. The AV has: “I will send a blast / spirit upon him”. Was it not that the Angel who later destroyed his army came upon him and put a spirit / disposition of mind within him that made him want to retreat? We see how God can directly affect the human spirit / mind. He can give a holy spirit, or an evil spirit. The Old Testament sets us up to understand that God can work directly on the human spirit, and then the New Testament says that He can give us a holy spirit, working again directly on the human mind and perception.

Is. 37:7 says that "He will hear news, and will return to his own land. I will cause him to fall by the sword in his own land". The "news" could have been of the destruction of Rabshakeh's army; or of the approach of Tirhakah, or some other threat to his empire. The situation points ahead to how the latter day "king of the north" will likewise hear "news" (s.w. Dan. 11:44 "tidings"). The Lord 'caused' Sennacherib to fall by the sword in that He put a spirit of jealousy in his sons, resulting in his murder.

When he had come into the house of his god, those who came forth from his own bowels killed him there with the sword-
He was killed as he was worshipping (Is. 37:38), about 20 years later; worshipping a god who had spectacularly failed him. We see here the terrible power of religion in blinding men to spiritual reality.


2Ch 32:22 Thus Yahweh saved Hezekiah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem from the hand of Sennacherib the king of Assyria, and from the hand of all others, and guided them on every side-
LXX "gave them rest" from all the surrounding nations (as in 2 Chron. 20:30). Assyria had not been Hezekiah's only enemy (2 Kings 18:7,8). The idea is of the "rest" of the Kingdom of God. There was perhaps the potential possibility for Isaiah's kingdom prophecies to have had fulfilment, just as the destruction of the latter day Assyrian will presage the establishment of the Kingdom of God. But this didn't happen, because Hezekiah turned away from faith to pride.


2Ch 32:23 Many brought gifts to Yahweh to Jerusalem, and precious things to Hezekiah king of Judah; so that He was exalted in the sight of all nations from thenceforth-
The Kingdom prophecies of Ps. 68:29; Is. 18:7; Hag. 2:7,8 could now have had their fulfilment; but Hezekiah became lifted up in pride and precluded it, leaving them to have their major fulfilment in the last days.

2Ch 32:24 In those days Hezekiah was sick even to death. He prayed to Yahweh; and He spoke to him, and gave him a sign-
This was in the same year as the invasion, but not necessarily at the same time. In this section we are reading a Divine summary of His take on Hezekiah. See on :25,56. It seems that unlike his father Ahaz, Hezekiah had asked for this sign (2 Kings 20:8). It is apparent that the experiences of believers are often suggestive of those of other believers. Insofar as we appreciate this, we will find strength to go the right way. Consider how Hezekiah was intended to see the similarities between himself and the earlier king Ahaz his father, and learn the lessons. They were both threatened by invasion and tempted to turn to human help (Is. 7:2; 37:1); Visited by Isaiah and told to not fear (Is. 7:4-9; 37:6,7). Ahaz was unfaithful by “the conduit of the upper pool on the highway to the fuller’s field” (Is. 7:3); and in just the same place Hezekiah’s faith was tested and he learnt the lessons of Ahaz’ failure (Is. 36:2). Both were given a sign by God and promised deliverance (Is. 7:14; 37:30). Ahaz refused to ask for a sign when offered one (Is. 7:11); whereas Hezekiah learnt, and asked for a sign (Is. 38:7,22). Thus his asking for a sign was not a sign of faithlessness but rather his seeking to not be like Ahaz. “The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform it” was spoken to both Ahaz (Is. 9:6) and Hezekiah (Is. 37:32).


2Ch 32:25 But Hezekiah didn’t render again according to the grace done to him. His heart was lifted up; therefore there was wrath on him, and on Judah and Jerusalem-
This is a similar idea to Ps. 40:5: "Many, Yahweh my God, are the wonderful works which You have done, and Your thoughts which are toward us. They can’t be declared back to You. If I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered". Yet through the Bathsheba Psalms, David is indeed declaring God's grace to him (see on Ps. 40:10). But he says he does so with a great sense of inadequacy; for he cannot render back to God according to the grace shown him. Hezekiah is criticized for this here. And yet David admits this is how man is, faced with the extent of God's grace to him. We have here another example of how two men may do the same thing [here, not rendering back according to God's grace], and yet be judged differently according to their attitude of mind.

The standard approach in interpretation is to assume that this lifting up with pride was the situation which occurred after the Babylonian ambassadors visited Hezekiah (Is. 39). Hezekiah was threatened with God's wrath, but humbled himself, and so it was delayed until the next generation. Is. 39:8 is then meant to mean that Hezekiah accepted the truth of God's word of judgment upon him as "good", but rejoiced that there would be peace and truth in his own days: "Then Hezekiah said to Isaiah, Yahweh’s word which you have spoken is good. He said moreover, For there will be peace and truth in my days".

But I suggest that a bit of deeper thought will find this unsatisfactory, and I have suggested throughout Is. 39 that Hezekiah 'lost it' spiritually at the time of the visit of the ambassadors. The awful apostasy of his own son Manasseh would then corroborate that. The "But..." with which the verse opens is not in the Hebrew. Translators added it in a mistaken effort to connect with the previous verse. The material here in these concluding thoughts about Hezekiah isn't chronological. Thus 2 Chron. 32:24 is clearly about a time before that of 2 Chron. 32:23. So I suggest that :25 refers to the reason why wrath came upon Judah, Jerusalem and himself. That wrath wasn't just threatened, it actually "came"(AV), there "was wrath" (NEV). For wrath to 'come' means that it was experienced- not just threatened. And we are specifically told, with the same Hebrew phrase used, that the Assyrians came up against Hezekiah, Judah and Jerusalem because "God's wrath" was upon them, and Hezekiah's generations were seeing that "with your own eyes" (2 Chron. 29:8). And here in 2 Chron. 32:25 we are told that this happened because of Hezekiah's pride and not returning to God what had been given him. That pride, therefore, doesn't apply to the time of the Babylonian ambassadors, but rather his pride in his own strength and devices to defend Jerusalem, as commented upon on :3-6. See on :26. The grace done to Hezekiah was his healing, for the sickness was in the same year as the invasion, but not necessarily at the same time. Because of his lack of adequate response to it, he had to be humbled by the Assyrian siege of Jerusalem. And this elicited the appropriate humility. But when the ambassadors came afterwards, his heart was again lifted up in pride.      


2Ch 32:26 Notwithstanding, Hezekiah humbled himself for the pride of his heart, both he and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the wrath of Yahweh didn’t come on them in the days of Hezekiah-
As discussed on :25, I suggest that this pride of heart was before the Assyrian siege of Jerusalem. Therefore Jerusalem was surrounded, but Hezekiah's repentance, along with that of "the inhabitants of Jerusalem", meant that the intended "wrath" was deferred. This approach also explains why it was specifically "the inhabitants of Jerusalem" who repented along with Hezekiah. If the reference is to proud attitudes towards the Babylonian ambassadors, then we would rather expect Hezekiah personally to be the one who needed to repent. And if the people needed to repent, then we would expect to read of all Judah repenting, rather than specifically "the inhabitants of Jerusalem".   


2Ch 32:27 Hezekiah had exceeding much riches and honour and he set up treasuries for silver, and for gold, and for precious stones, and for spices, and for shields, and for all kinds of goodly vessels-
The same terms "spices... gold... precious stones" is used of what the queen of Sheba brought to Solomon, and what was brought to Hezekiah after his healing (2 Chron. 32:27). Perhaps the conversion of the queen of Sheba to Israel's God meant that her people continued to be sympathetic to Judah even in Hezekiah's time, and they were the source of these things in his time. But the similarity sets us up to expect that Hezekiah like Solomon would then turn away from God, disallowing the potential of being the king of God's gloriously established kingdom in Israel; and this is what happened.


2Ch 32:28 storehouses also for the increase of grain and new wine and oil; and stalls for all kinds of animals, and flocks in folds-
This recalls the language of Solomon's building store cities for his wealth (see on :27 for another allusion to Solomon). But the connection with Solomon is not a good one; for all this wealth of his was not associated with his spirituality, but rather with his apostacy. And so it was to be with Hezekiah.


2Ch 32:29 Moreover he provided him cities, and possessions of flocks and herds in abundance; for God had given him very much substance-
This continues the allusion to Solomon, who likewise built store cities for his wealth; but see on :28.

2Ch 32:30 This same Hezekiah also stopped the upper spring of the waters of Gihon, and brought them straight down on the west side of the city of David. Hezekiah prospered in all his works-
Some manuscripts read "the east side". The current Pool of Siloam is to the South East of modern Jerusalem, but it could have been south west of the old "city of David". "Prospered" is yet another allusion to Solomon's prospering (s.w. 1 Chron. 29:23; 2 Chron. 7:11); but see on :28.  

2Ch 32:31 However concerning the ambassadors of the princes of Babylon, who sent to him to inquire of the wonder that was done in the land-
Hezekiah's positive comment in his Proverbs (see on Prov. 25:1) about faithful ambassadors must be read in the context of the fact that Prov. 25:13 was one of the Proverbs rewritten in Hezekiah's time. He sinned with regard to the ambassadors of Babylon (2 Chron. 32:31), but perhaps he was led into this by willfully misreading this Proverb of Solomon, or at least getting it rewritten with the subtext of justifying what he did.  

God left him-
This is the word for 'forsaking', and is used about God forsaking those who turn away from Him (Dt. 31:17). We are left to wonder whether this was in response to Hezekiah forsaking Him. Or perhaps it makes him a type of the Lord Jesus, who was also apparently forsaken by God in order to reveal what was in His heart (Mt. 27:46). There are times when God's presence does apparently leave us, and He no longer holds us back from sin as He does at other times- in order to reveal to ourselves what is truly in our deepest hearts.

To try him, that He might know all that was in his heart-
Hezekiah asks for a sign “to prove” [s.w. test / try] that God’s predicted cure of him was going to happen. And when given the option of the shadow of the sun jumping forward by ten degrees, he almost mocks that as too ‘easy’. Yet this is the man with the accolade that no King believed in God like he did. Perhaps he reached his heights of faith through having these low moments. ‘Putting God to the test’ as it seems Hezekiah did is seen in Scripture as not fully believing in Him (Num. 14:20-24; Dt. 6:16; Is. 7:12; Lk. 11:33-36). Maybe God left Hezekiah to test him in the matter of the ambassadors from Babylon as a kind of response- ‘You put me to the test, I’ll put you to the test’.


2Ch 32:32 Now the rest of the acts of Hezekiah, and his good deeds, behold, they are written in the vision of Isaiah the prophet the son of Amoz, in the book of the kings of Judah and Israel-
This may refer to some writing of Isaiah which we don't have, and the "book of the kings" may not refer to the books of Kings we have in our Bibles. Or it could mean that the historical record of Isaiah in Is. 36-39 is incorporated in the record we have in 2 Kings.


2Ch 32:33 Hezekiah slept with his fathers-
This repeated phrase indicates death is unconsciousness, like sleep; and the idiom surely requires a resurrection of the body to judgment at some future date, which we know to be the time of the Lord's return to earth. If the Bible taught reward at death or an immortal soul [which it doesn't], then this idiom would not be used.

And they buried him in the ascent of the tombs of the sons of David; and all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem did him honour at his death. Manasseh his son reigned in his place-
That Hezekiah raised such an evil son in the last 15 years of his life is another hint that he would have been better dying when he was intended to, without a descendant, rather than getting more life with which he turned away from God and raised an evil son.