The Bible teaches that there is hope for the worst sinner. Manasseh, the king of Judah, was a very evil king. In 2 Kings 21, the Bible tells us that Manasseh “did evil in the sight of the Lord” (vs. 2). He “practiced soothsaying, used witchcraft, and consulted spiritists and mediums” (vs. 3). And He did so wickedly that offered his own children as sacrifices for the idols “he caused his sons to pass through the fire in the Valley of the Son of Hinnom” (vs. 6). And “He even set a carved image, the idol which he had made, in the house of God” (vs. 7). And he behaved “more wickedly than all the Amorites who were before him” and “made Judah sin with his idols” (vs. 11). In addition, the Bible tells us that Manasseh “shed very much innocent blood, till he had filled Jerusalem from one end to another” (vs. 16). It seemed that king Manasseh was beyond hope of turning to God.
But, the Lord in His mercy sent the king of Assyria to war with Judah. The Assyrians won the war and took king Manasseh as a captive and led him away with hooks and bronze fetters to the land of Babylon. In his doomed situation, Manasseh reviewed his past actions of apostasy and repented with all his heart. And the Bible tells us, “Now when he was afflicted, he implored the Lord his God, and humbled himself greatly before the God of his fathers, and prayed to Him; and He received his entreaty, heard his supplication, and brought him back to Jerusalem into his king. Then Manasseh knew that the Lord was God” (2 Chronicles 33:12-13).
When God restored him to the kingdom, Manasseh proved his sincere repentance and did great reforms: “He took away the foreign gods and the idol from the house of the Lord, and all the altars that he had built in the mount of the house of the Lord and in Jerusalem; and he cast them out of the city. He also repaired the altar of the Lord, sacrificed peace offerings and thank offerings on it, and commanded Judah to serve the Lord God of Israel” (2 Chronicles 33:15-16).
The worst sinner has hope. He can be accepted by God when he sincerely repents of his sins with His help. And the story of king Manasseh is just one example of God’s willingness to accept the worst sinner into His fold. “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).
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In His service,
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