Hezekiah’s Foolishness.[a] 1 At that time the king of Babylon, Merodach-baladan, the son of Baladan, sent envoys with letters and a gift to Hezekiah, for he heard that Hezekiah had been ill but had recovered. 2 Hezekiah was delighted at this, and therefore he showed the envoys his entire treasury: the silver, the gold, the spices, the precious oil, his entire armory, and all that was in his storerooms. There was nothing in his palace or in his entire realm that Hezekiah did not show them.
3 Then the prophet Isaiah came to King Hezekiah and said to him, “What did these men say to you? Where did they come from?” Hezekiah replied, “They came to me from a distant country, from Babylon.” 4 Isaiah then asked him, “What did they see in your palace?” Hezekiah said, “They have seen everything in my palace. There is nothing in my storerooms that I did not show them.”
5 Thereupon Isaiah said to Hezekiah, “Hear the word of the Lord of hosts. 6 Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, when everything in your palace, and everything that your ancestors have stored up until this day, will be carried off to Babylon. Nothing will be left. 7 Some of your own sons who were fathered by you will be taken away and forced to serve as eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon.” 8 Hezekiah replied to Isaiah, “The word of the Lord that you have spoken is comforting.” For he thought to himself, “There will be peace and security during my lifetime.”
- Isaiah 39:1 The deportation of Jews to Babylonia over a century later, in 587 B.C., will be the tragic result of this policy; at least this is the view of the editor, who takes advantage of the episode to place a prophecy of exile on the lips of Isaiah himself.