The yoyo continues as Manasseh takes the throne. He is an evil king. His dad Hezzekiah had worked so hard to rid the kingdom of all the garbage of the past and almost immediately all that hard work is lost because Manasseh takes the throne. The people immediately fall back into their old sinful ways and God is unhappy to say the least. The king of Assyria captures Manasseh and guess what – “Now that he was in trouble, he went to his knees in prayer”. Sound familiar? He had led the people “off the beaten path into practices of evil” and yet when he is down and out and really in trouble, he returns to what his father taught him – that God is in control. God “is touched” by his repentance and he is restored to the kingdom but the damage has been done. He “issued orders” for the people to return to God – to clean up the kingdom from the idols and pagan practices that he himself has brought back. Scripture tells a chilling story of what happened from my perspective – check out what resulted: “But the people didn’t take him seriously”. The king has created an issue where the people are not following what they hear – they are living based on what they have been shown. Manasseh has restored the sinful ways of the past and they saw him right in the middle of it leading the charge to revolt against God. Now he has a change of heart and wants them to turn around but words are not enough. Actions speak louder than words guys. People judge based on what they see us do rather than what we tell them. That is never more true than with our families and coworkers who are with us more of the time. Manasseh repented of his sin and God took him back. Unfortunately the damage done to the kingdom was not turned around – repentance did not happen because of words. So Amon takes over and immediately returns to the evil. He doesn’t last long – only two years before God takes him out – but the cost of sin continues. There is always a price to pay for sin. God can restore us to Himself, but the impact of sin often has far reaching results. Manasseh lives that. He came to his senses and repented but the kingdom he led down the wrong path does not experience that grace and flounders helplessly while he can only sit and watch it spiral out of control. What a sad story for a king with a powerful legacy upon which he should have built – that of his father Hezzekiah. Never stop walking the walk guys. It makes a difference. Life matters!
Archive for December 20th, 2007