This chapter contains the entire story of the most wicked king of Judah. Manasseh is often referred to as the most wicked man who ever lived as well. Verse 9 says, “Manasseh led Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem astray, to do more evil than the nations whom the Lord destroyed before the people of Israel.”

Because of Manasseh’s wickedness, God sent Assyria to conquer Judah and to drag Manasseh away in chains. Verses 12 & 13 tell us ” And when he was in distress, he entreated the favor of the Lord his God and humbled himself greatly before the God of his fathers.  He prayed to him, and God was moved by his entreaty and heard his plea and brought him again to Jerusalem into his kingdom.” From that time on he became one of the most righteous Kings of Judah and combined with his former reign he reigned longer than any other King. He reigned for 55 years!

Oscar Wilde said, “No man is rich enough to buy back his past.” The classic rock group Kansas sang the song “Dust In The Wind.” One verse says: “Don’t hang on! Nothing lasts forever but the earth and sky. It slips away, and all your money won’t another minute buy!”

Yet, God, in his grace can redeem the wasted years in anyone’s life. One of my favorite verses is Joel 2:25. It is a specific promise to the Kings of Israel who have served other gods and were conquered by foreign powers. God offers redemption if they would only repent  and turn back to God. It says, ” I will restore to you the years that ?the swarming locust has eaten, ?the hopper, the destroyer, and ?the cutter, ?my great army, which I sent among you.”

Manasseh is a ray of sunshine for those of us who wasted much of their lives serving the false gods of the world.

“Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions.” 1 John 3:18(NLT)