Wherefore hear the word of the LORD, ye scornful men, that rule this people which is in Jerusalem. Because ye have said, We have made a covenant with death, and with hell are we at agreement; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, it shall not come unto us: for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood have we hid ourselves:
The rulers of Judah boasted of their covenant with Egypt, as making them free from Assyrian attack, but their alliance would mean death. They were trusting lies and falsehood. The covenant with death and the pact with Sheol was not a literal treaty, of course. The thought seems to be that Judah felt that it was on good terms with death and Sheol, and had nothing to fear, because of its alliance with Egypt.