David Livingstone once said, “I place no value on anything I have or may possess, except in relation
to the kingdom of God. If anything will advance the interests of the kingdom, it shall be given away
or kept, only as by giving or keeping it I shall most promote the glory … More
The Southern Kingdom was to be ruled by six kings (five bad and one good) before the end would come. Manasseh’s reign began when, as a youngster of twelve, he was placed on the throne as a co-ruler with his father Hezekiah. His reign lasted for 55 years which was the longest reign of any Jewish king but he failed to follow the godly example of his father.
All that Hezekiah had reformed, Manasseh reinstated. From the description of his detestable practices it seems that no vile practice of the heathen was excluded. He even built altars to idols right in the temple and its courtyards. Under his leadership Judah became more heathen than the peoples the Israelites had destroyed under the leadership of Moses and Joshua (vv. 9-11).
Manasseh sacrificed his own son to the Ammonite God Molech (v. 6) and probably many more who opposed his religious policies (v. 16). According to Jewish tradition, the prophet Isaiah was “sown asunder” by him (Heb. 11:37). The record in Chronicles reports that Manasseh for his sins was taken captive to Babylon. While there he repented of his sins and God in His grace allowed him to return to Jerusalem. The restored king then cleaned the house of the Lord and removed many of the pagan altars, however the “high places” as many times before were allowed to remain as places of worship (2 Chron. 33:l0-17).
When he died he was succeeded by his son Amon who only reigned two years and was assassinated. He had learned only his father’s evil ways.
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II Kings 18:1-16Hezekiah Reigns in Judah
II Kings 18:17-37Sennacherib Boasts Against The Lord
II Kings 19:1-19Sennacherib’s Threat And Hezekiah’s Prayer
II Kings 19:20-37The Lord’s Answer to Hezekiah’s Prayer
II Kings 20:1-11Hezekiah’s Life Extended
II Kings 20:12-21Hezekiah’s Visitors And Death
II Kings 21:1-26Manassah And Amon’s Reign
II Kings 22:1-20Josiah’s Reformation
II Kings 23:1-20Josiah Restores True Worship
II Kings 23:21-37The Reign And Captivity of Jehoahaz
II Kings 24:1-20The Reign And Activity of Jehoachin