"Thus saith the Lord GOD of hosts, Go, get thee unto this treasurer, even unto Shebna, which is over the house, and say, What hast thou here? and whom hast thou here, that thou hast hewed thee out a sepulchre here, as he that heweth him out a sepulchre on high, and that graveth an habitation for himself in a rock?"
Shebna was in a position of high authority. To be over the house was to be next to the king (II Kings 10:5, 15:5). The placement of this rebuke leads one to believe that Shebna was an adversary rather than an advocate of Isaiah's prophecies. Could he have been encouraging the people toward an alliance with Egypt against Assyria (Isaiah 30:1-2)? None can say for certain, but the possibility is very real.
The common practice of the day was to prepare a grave in the vicinity of one's established life. Such endeavors were symbolic of stability, respect and wealth (Matthew 27:60). Shebna was obviously very comfortable with his position in the face of God's chastisement.
"Behold, the LORD will carry thee away with a mighty captivity, and will surely cover thee. He will surely violently turn and toss thee like a ball into a large country: there shalt thou die, and there the chariots of thy glory shall be the shame of thy lord's house. And I will drive thee from thy station, and from thy state shall he pull thee down." (Isaiah 22:17-19)
As a ball is helpless in the hands of a child, Shebna would be powerless to deliver himself as God allowed him to be violently carried off by the Assyrians. The chariots of glory are likely Judah's war chariots for which Shebna was responsible. Instead of being a symbol of strength for Judah, these things would become a picture of her reproach when they fell under the control of the enemy.
The Scriptures are silent as to Shebna's ultimate end. If he is the same man presented in Isaiah 37:2, he is seen in a reduced status of scribe yet not removed from leadership entirely. Perhaps he repented at the preaching of Isaiah and God did not need to carry out His wrath, or perhaps he was taken captive at a later time.