2 Chronicles 33

1 Manasses was twelve years old when he began to reign, and he reigned fifty-five years in Jerusalem.
2 And he did evil before the Lord, according to all the abominations of the nations, which the Lord cast out before the children of Israel:
3 And he turned, and built again the high places which Ezechias his father had destroyed: and he built altars to Baalim, and made groves, and he adored all the host of heaven, and worshipped them.
4 He built also altars in the house of the Lord, whereof the Lord had said: In Jerusalem shall my name be for ever.
5 And he built them for all the host of heaven in the two courts of the house of the Lord.
6 And he made his sons to pass through the fire in the valley of Benennom: he observed dreams, followed divinations, gave himself up to magic arts, had with him magicians, and enchanters: and he wrought many evils before the Lord, to provoke him to anger.
7 He set also a graven, and a molten statue in the house of God, of which God had said to David, and to Solomon his son: In this house, and in Jerusalem, which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, will I put my name for ever.
8 And I will not make the foot of Israel to be removed out of the land which I have delivered to their fathers: yet so if they will take heed to do what I have commanded them, and all the law, and the ceremonies, and judgments by the hand of Moses.
9 So Manasses seduced Juda, and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, to do evil beyond all the nations, which the Lord had destroyed before the face of the children of Israel.
10 And the Lord spoke to his people, and they would not hearken.
11 Therefore he brought upon them the captains of he army of the king of the Assyrians: and they took Manasses, and carried him bound with chains and fetters to Babylon.
12 And after that he was in distress he prayed to the Lord his God: and did penance exceedingly before the God of his fathers.
13 And he entreated him, and besought him earnestly: and he heard his prayer, and brought him again to Jerusalem into his kingdom, and Manasses knew that the Lord was God.
14 After this he built a wall without the city of David, on the west side of Gihon in the valley, from the entering in of the gate round about to Ophel, and raised it up to a great height: and he appointed captains of the army in all the fenced cities of Juda:
15 And he took away the strange gods, and the idol out of the house of the Lord: the altars also which he had made in the mount of the house of the Lord, and in Jerusalem, and he cast them all out of the city.
16 And he repaired the altar of the Lord, and sacrificed upon it victims, and peace offerings, and praise: and he commanded Juda to serve the Lord the God of Israel.
17 Nevertheless the people still sacrificed in the high places to the Lord their God.
18 But the rest of the acts of Manasses, and his prayer to his God, and the words of the seers that spoke to him in the name of the Lord the God of Israel, are contained in the words of the kings of Israel.
19 His prayer also, and his being heard and all his sins, and contempt, and places wherein he built high places, and set up groves, and statues before he did penance, are written in the words of Hozai.
20 And Manasses slept with his fathers, and they buried him in his house: and his son Amon reigned in his stead.
21 Amon was two and twenty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned two years in Jerusalem.
22 And he did evil in the sight of the Lord, as Manasses his father had done: he sacrificed to all the idols which Manasses his father had made, and served them.
23 And he did not humble himself before the lord, as Manasses his father had humbled himself, but committed far greater sin.
24 And his servants conspired against him, and slew him in his own house.
25 But the rest of the multitude of the people slew them that had killed Amon, and made Josias his son king in his stead.

2 Chronicles 33 Commentary

Chapter 33

Manasseh's and repentance. (1-20) Amon's wicked reign in Judah. (21-25)

Verses 1-20 We have seen Manasseh's wickedness; here we have his repentance, and a memorable instance it is of the riches of God's pardoning mercy, and the power of his renewing grace. Deprived of his liberty, separated from his evil counsellors and companions, without any prospect but of ending his days in a wretched prison, Manasseh thought upon what had passed; he began to cry for mercy and deliverance. He confessed his sins, condemned himself, was humbled before God, loathing himself as a monster of impiety and wickedness. Yet he hoped to be pardoned through the abundant mercy of the Lord. Then Manasseh knew that Jehovah was God, able to deliver. He knew him as a God of salvation; he learned to fear, trust in, love, and obey him. From this time he bore a new character, and walked in newness of life. Who can tell what tortures of conscience, what pangs of grief, what fears of wrath, what agonizing remorse he endured, when he looked back on his many years of apostacy and rebellion against God; on his having led thousands into sin and perdition; and on his blood-guiltiness in the persecution of a number of God's children? And who can complain that the way of heaven is blocked up, when he sees such a sinner enter? Say the worst against thyself, here is one as bad who finds the way to repentance. Deny not to thyself that which God hath not denied to thee; it is not thy sin, but thy impenitence, that bars heaven against thee.

Verses 21-25 Amon's father did ill, but he did worse. Whatever warnings or convictions he had, he never humbled himself. He was soon cut off in his sins, and made a warning for all men not to abuse the example of God's patience and mercy to Manasseh, as an encouragement to continue in sin. May God help us to be honest to ourselves, and to think aright respecting our own character, before death fixes us in an unchangeable state.

Chapter Summary

INTRODUCTION TO 2 CHRONICLES 33

This chapter gives an account of the reign of Manasseh, of his idolatries and impieties, 2Ch 33:1-10, of his captivity, humiliation, repentance, and reformation, 2Ch 33:11-17 of his last end, death, and burial, 2Ch 33:18-20 and of the wicked reign of Amon his son, and of his death by his servants, 2Ch 33:21-25.

2 Chronicles 33 Commentaries