Bible Meaning: Jehovah is my strength, the might of Jehovah
Strong's Concordance #H2396, #G1478
There are three men named Hezekiah in the Bible. One was the son of Neariah (1Chronicles 3:23). A second was one of the many men who returned to Judah after being held as captives in Babylon (Ezra 2:16, Nehemiah 7:21).
The third, and by far the most well known Hezekiah, was one of the righteous kings who ruled over the Kingdom of Judah.
Hezekiah, at the age of 25, assumes the throne of his father king Ahaz in 715 B.C. Eight years prior to his ascension the Assyrians had completed their conquering of the northern ten tribes of Israel (Kingdom of Israel).
In his first year of rule, Hezekiah begins to engage in religious reform. Jerusalem's temple, under his father Ahaz, had been allowed to deteriorate with its doors shut and its services halted (2Chronicles 28:24, 29:7). Ahaz had also encouraged rampant idolatry not only in Jerusalem but also in the entire kingdom (2Chronicles 28:25).
Hezekiah has the temple doors repaired and all the idols within it removed and destroyed (2Chronicles 29:4 - 5). He gathers all the priests and Levites and charges them with cleansing and rededicating the temple, which includes restarting all of its services (2Chronicles 29).
The king, in a unique move, calls upon all Judah to keep the Passover. He even extends an invitation to any remnants in the northern ten tribes to come to Jerusalem for the Feast (2Chronicles 30). This unique Passover - Feast of Unleavened Bread celebration lasts twice as long as was originally commanded by God.
The zeal of the people, after this special period of worship, moves them to destroy all the idols and pagan altars in Judah as well as in Ephraim and Manasseh (2Chronicles 31:1).
Two great miracles
Hezekiah decides to no longer pay yearly tribute money to Assyria (2Kings 18:7). Knowing his act will certainly bring the empire's wrath, he fortifies Jerusalem and prepares it for war. He also conceals the city's water supply, located at the Gihon Spring, by building a tunnel to redirect its flow to the pool of Siloam (2Chronicles 32:1 - 8).
After Assyria's King Sennacherib takes all of Judah's fenced cities, however, Hezekiah seeks to negotiate a deal to spare Jerusalem. He pays three hundred talents of silver and thirty talents of gold in the hope of saving the capital (2Kings 18:13 - 16). His efforts fail as Sennacherib sends one of his generals with an 185,000-man army to demand Jerusalem's unconditional surrender (verses 17 - 37).
The king, knowing the situation is desperate, cries out to God for help. The Eternal's response is to send the Angel of the Lord to kill all the troops as they prepare to take Jerusalem (2Kings 18 - 19, Isaiah 37:33 - 38)!
In 701 B.C., the same year as Assyria's failed attempt to conquer Jerusalem, Hezekiah becomes gravely ill. After humbling himself before God he is granted another fifteen years of life (2Kings 20)!
New Testament mention
Hezekiah, in the KJV New Testament, is referred to as Ezekias. He is named in Jesus' lineage through his stepfather Joseph (Matthew 1:9 - 10).
2Kings 18:13 - 14, 17, 19, 29 - 30
Now in the fourteenth year of king Hezekiah did Sennacherib king of Assyria come up against all the fenced cities of Judah, and took them.
And Hezekiah king of Judah sent to the king of Assyria to Lachish, saying, I have offended; return from me: that which thou puttest on me will I bear. And the king of Assyria appointed unto Hezekiah king of Judah three hundred talents of silver and thirty talents of gold . . .
And the king of Assyria sent Tartan and Rabsaris and Rabshakeh from Lachish to king Hezekiah with a great host against Jerusalem . . . And Rabshakeh said unto them, Speak ye now to Hezekiah, Thus saith the great king, the king of Assyria, What confidence is this wherein thou trustest?
Thus saith the king (of Assyria), Let not Hezekiah deceive you: for he shall not be able to deliver you out of his hand: Neither let Hezekiah make you trust in the LORD, saying, The LORD will surely deliver us, and this city shall not be delivered into the hand of the king of Assyria.
Then Isaiah the son of Amoz sent to Hezekiah, saying, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, That which thou hast prayed to me against Sennacherib king of Assyria I have heard.
And the rest of the acts of Hezekiah, and all his might, and how he made a pool, and a conduit, and brought water into the city, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah?
Hezekiah began to reign when he was five and twenty years old, and he reigned nine and twenty years in Jerusalem. And his mother's name was Abijah, the daughter of Zechariah.
2Chronicles 30:1, 22
And Hezekiah sent to all Israel and Judah, and wrote letters also to Ephraim and Manasseh, that they should come to the house of the LORD at Jerusalem, to keep the passover unto the LORD God of Israel . . .
And Hezekiah spake comfortably unto all the Levites that taught the good knowledge of the LORD: and they did eat throughout the feast seven days, offering peace offerings, and making confession to the LORD God of their fathers.
And thus did Hezekiah throughout all Judah, and wrought that which was good and right and truth before the LORD his God.
2Chronicles 32:20, 22, 30
And for this cause Hezekiah the king, and the prophet Isaiah the son of Amoz, prayed and cried to heaven . . .
Thus the LORD saved Hezekiah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem from the hand of Sennacherib the king of Assyria, and from the hand of all other, and guided them on every side . . .
This same Hezekiah also stopped the upper watercourse of Gihon, and brought it straight down to the west side of the city of David. And Hezekiah prospered in all his works.
Isaiah 38:1 - 2, 5
In those days was Hezekiah sick unto death. And Isaiah the prophet the son of Amoz came unto him, and said unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Set thine house in order: for thou shalt die, and not live. Then Hezekiah turned his face toward the wall, and prayed unto the LORD . . .
Go, and say to Hezekiah, Thus saith the LORD, the God of David thy father, I have heard thy prayer, I have seen thy tears: behold, I will add unto thy days fifteen years.