Updated: Jul 24, 2022
Please read these scriptural references: 2 Kings 21:1-18, 2 Chronicles 33:1-20
King Manasseh was the 13th King of Judah and the longest ruling King of Judah or of lsrael, ruling 55 years. He was 12 years old when he began to reign (died around 62 years of age). His father was righteous King Hezekiah.
He was significant in teaching Judah to burn/sacrifice their children to false gods and he set up an idol in the temple of Yahweh. After he repented he was still a king who could not overcome his idolatrous past. He went down in history as the king who taught Judah to sin. What a sad legacy!
There are lessons we can learn from King Manasseh:
1. Longevity of service does not indicate righteousness. David was a righteous king but he only served 40 years.
2. Sin comes with consequences – the King was forgiven but the people found it hard to give up their traditions and continued to sacrifice in the high places except now they just said they were doing it to YHVH. See 2 Chronicles 33:17. Sound familiar? Oh, what pagan worship we have traditionally practiced and said that we were worshipping Yeshua. God forbids such things.
Sin, even though forgiven, can have an aftermath of devastating destruction. 2 Kings 21:11-14 tells us what would and what did happen to the Kingdom of Judah.
3. Mercy and grace was extended to Manasseh just as today, thru repentance. Where was the blood offering? What would have been the blood offering? Contrary to popular belief amongst some, Jews have always believed in grace and mercy and that true repentance is always made directly to God. Grace and Mercy are not just New Testament doctrines. They existed in the Old Testament also. The Torah states (Old Testament) that Noah found "grace" in the eyes of God.
4. A righteous Father (Hezekiah) does not always produce a righteous child.
In order to fully understand we need to understand the mistakes that his father made.
First, in 2 Kings 20:13-19 we are told how King Hezekiah exposed his precious treasures to the enemy. We should never expose what is precious to our enemies. (Matthew 7:6 warns us not to cast our pearls before swine). King Hezekiah’s pride prompted him to do this.
Second, Hezekiah's prayer for more years to live brought about the birth of this wicked son; king of the future. It is said he was born three years after he recovered.
5. When people disregard the Torah of God there is no limit to what the people will do. Especially when they follow a wicked leader. There is no limit to the evil of man's heart.
6. God hates those who shed innocent blood 33:6 and 9
7. People are like sheep and will follow the wicked or the righteous, so we must be careful of our witness. Our mistakes cannot always be taken back, just like with Manasseh. It was always said of him throughout scripture that he made Judah to sin, even though he repented the people were too far gone. When we are “successful” in getting people to follow a path of corruption or accept false teaching, it is extremely difficult to get those whom we have corrupted to see and forsake their error(s). Many parents have led their children into deep religious error, then later, when the parents have learned and obeyed the truth, they quite often are unable to get their children, who are now adults, to repent of their sins and accept the truth. The same has happened with gospel preachers who went astray and returned to the truth. They, like Manasseh, took the brave move to correct their wrongs, but are usually unable to get those whom they have corrupted to change.
We should be careful how we use our influence. He learned by harsh experience the influence of his bad example.
8. Even the very wicked, whom we may consider unworthy, can receive forgiveness of their sins. No one is beyond hope.
9. God warns the wicked in many different ways, just as he sent prophets to warn Manassah, but he would not listen. The wicked have no excuse. Modern America, as well as other nations, refuse to listen to the voices of correction. Instead, they choose to call "evil - good" and "good-evil".
My prayer is that you and I choose to have a heart like David's. David always accepted the responsibility for his own sins, and he was quick to repent before God.