Manasseh was twelve years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem fifty-five years. His mother was Hephzibah.
He did what was evil in the LORD's sight, imitating the detestable practices of the pagan nations whom the LORD had driven from the land ahead of the Israelites.
He rebuilt the pagan shrines his father, Hezekiah, had destroyed. He constructed altars for Baal and set up an Asherah pole, just as King Ahab of Israel had done. He also bowed before all the forces of heaven and worshiped them.
He even built pagan altars in the Temple of the LORD, the place where the LORD had said his name should be honored.
He built these altars for all the forces of heaven in both courtyards of the LORD's Temple.
Manasseh even sacrificed his own son in the fire. a He practiced sorcery and divination, and he consulted with mediums and psychics. He did much that was evil in the LORD's sight, arousing his anger.
Manasseh even took an Asherah pole he had made and set it up in the Temple, the very place where the LORD had told David and his son Solomon: "My name will be honored here forever in this Temple and in Jerusalem -- the city I have chosen from among all the other tribes of Israel.
If the Israelites will obey my commands -- the whole law that was given through my servant Moses -- I will not send them into exile from this land that I gave their ancestors."
But the people refused to listen, and Manasseh led them to do even more evil than the pagan nations whom the LORD had destroyed when the Israelites entered the land.
Then the LORD said through his servants the prophets:
"King Manasseh of Judah has done many detestable things. He is even more wicked than the Amorites, who lived in this land before Israel. He has led the people of Judah into idolatry.
So this is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: I will bring such disaster on Jerusalem and Judah that the ears of those who hear about it will tingle with horror.
I will judge Jerusalem by the same standard I used for Samaria and by the same measure I used for the family of Ahab. I will wipe away the people of Jerusalem as one wipes a dish and turns it upside down.
Then I will reject even those few of my people who are left, and I will hand them over as plunder for their enemies.
For they have done great evil in my sight and have angered me ever since their ancestors came out of Egypt."
Manasseh also murdered many innocent people until Jerusalem was filled from one end to the other with innocent blood. This was in addition to the sin that he caused the people of Judah to commit, leading them to do evil in the LORD's sight.
The rest of the events in Manasseh's reign and all his deeds, including the sins he committed, are recorded in The Book of the History of the Kings of Judah.
When Manasseh died, he was buried in the palace garden, the garden of Uzza. Then his son Amon became the next king.
Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved. (New Living Translation - The Bible Online)