Never Too Late | Manasseh | PART 2
Manasseh was the worst king the kingdom of Judah had ever seen. Yet, God was not done with him. Let’s dive into this truly “Never too late” story that gives hope to all of us!
Series: Never Too Late,
Speaker: Pastor Don Dodge,
Scripture: 2 Chronicles 33:1-2, 2 Chronicles 33:3, Deuteronomy 31:16-17, 2 Chronicles 33:4-5, 2 Chronicles 33:6, 2 Kings 21:13-14, 2 Chronicles 33:10-11, 2 Chronicles 33:14-17,
Sermon page: https://www.avalonchurch.org/sermons/never-too-late-manasseh-part-2/,
Sermon Notes: 2020-07-26_never-too-late-part-2_sermon-notes.pdf,
Discussion Questions: 2020-07-26_never-too-late-part-2_discussion-questions.pdf,
It’s never too late.
Stories of the heart change that led to a huge impact
in their lives and the lives of generations after.
- Scariest interviewer that I ever had the privilege of being interviewed by.
- Great sense of humor.
Rian’s story is intriguing
and it’s a good intro to the scripture today.
Story: Rian Seipler
Rian shares his stories.
Overview of Chronicles
Last book of OT
With so many promises that were fulfilled,
With their exile to Babylon reversed.
They were still oppressed by other nations.
Jerusalem was still a mess,
The Temple still just a shadow of the past.
It was like they were still in exile.
...still waiting for God to do something big.
Though Chronicles ends the OT story looking for a conclusion,
...It is a story that was intended to offer hope.
That God was going to finish what he started.
...That he would send the Messiah,
...The King from the line of David,
...Who would be better than David!
...Who would come and restore
Everything that was broken.
So today we’re going to look at the story
of a King named Manasseh.
Probably the worst king
the S. kingdom of Judah had ever known.
The story takes place in 2 Chron.33.
How bad he was
1Manasseh was twelve years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem fifty-five years. 2 He did what was evil in the Lord’s sight, following the detestable practices of the pagan nations that the Lord had driven from the land ahead of the Israelites. – 2 Chron. 33:1-2 (NLT)
For 55 years, he led the nation away from God.
55 years of corruption.
There was no Congress to slow him down.
No other branches of government to stop him.
There were no protestors who could do anything about it.
He was King.
Where he went, the country went.
The only one who could stop him,
...Was another king.
3 He rebuilt the pagan shrines his father, Hezekiah, had broken down. He constructed altars for the images of Baal and set up Asherah poles. He also bowed before all the powers of the heavens and worshiped them. – 2 Chron. 33:3 (NLT)
These included the sex gods and temple prostitution.
These included infanticide.
There was some awful things people did
To appease the gods.
So for 55 years,
King Manasseh hedged his bets.
He worshiped all the gods of the ancient world,
...just in case.
In doing so,
he forgot what got him there in the first place.
He forgot God’s promise to Abraham,
...Bringing a child to a couple that could not have kids,
...Promising a nation by which the world would be blessed.
He forgot the slavery in Egypt,
...And how God raised up Moses,
...He forgot Passover and the parting of the Red Sea,
...And witnessing God’s power
to lead the people to the Promised Land
He forgot the prediction that was given to Moses
Right before he died;
16 ...these people will soon prostitute themselves to the foreign gods of the land they are entering. They will forsake me and break the covenant I made with them. 17 And in that day I will become angry with them and forsake them; I will hide my face from them, and they will be destroyed. – Deut 31:16-17
Manasseh forgot how he got there,
That his great, great, great grandfather David,
Was chosen to lead these people differently than the other nations.
...That YHWH God was the ultimate ruler,
...And his temple was just down the road from Manasseh’s palace.
4 [Manasseh] built pagan altars in the Temple of the Lord, the place where the Lord had said, “My name will remain in Jerusalem forever.” 5 He built these altars for all the powers of the heavens in both courtyards of the Lord’s Temple. – 2 Chron. 33:4-5 (NLT)
6 Manasseh also sacrificed his own sons in the fire in the valley of Ben-Hinnom. He practiced sorcery, divination, and witchcraft, and he consulted with mediums and psychics. He did much that was evil in the Lord’s sight, arousing his anger. – 2 Chron. 33:6 (NLT)
Manasseh’s Father was Hezekiah
a very good King who we’ll talk about next week.
Manasseh completely rejected his family... his heritage.
...till eventually he sacrificed some of his own children
to appease the gods of the surrounding nations.
He practiced sorcery and witchcraft
...Knowing that this is why King Saul’s family was not king.
Sometimes, we keep taking one bad step after another,
...Until one day we look back
And we can’t believe how far we have fallen
And how wide the wake of destruction trailing behind us.
7 Manasseh even took a carved idol he had made and set it up in God’s Temple, the very place where God had told David and his son Solomon: “My name will be honored forever in this Temple and in Jerusalem—the city I have chosen from among all the tribes of Israel. 8 If the Israelites will be careful to obey my commands—all the laws, decrees, and regulations given through Moses—I will not send them into exile from this land that I set aside for your ancestors.” 9 But Manasseh led the people of Judah and Jerusalem to do even more evil than the pagan nations that the Lord had destroyed when the people of Israel entered the land. –2 Chron.33:7-9 (NLT)
Manasseh was arrogant.
This is what Moses warned about:
and you said you wanted to be the people of God,
...You said you would follow me,
YHWH, your Lord.
...And I promised that I would bless you
with a land to call your own,
...A land through which I would bless all nations through you.
But if you forget me,
if you reject me,
...You will lose my protection,
...You will lose this land.
In other words,
With me you'll become a superpower.
But don’t ever become so arrogant
to think that you are a super-power kind of people.
I’m not looking for a super-power kind of people.
I’m looking for a humble-people who will
...And trust me
...the Super-Power God!
But like every king in the N. Kingdom,
...He wanted to run with the big boys,
...And God warned him.
...The prophets warned him.
10 The Lord spoke to Manasseh and his people, but they ignored all his warnings. –2 Chron.33:10 (NLT)
In the 2 Kings version of the story,
...There's a lot of detail about what will happen.
I will wipe out Jerusalem as one wipes a dish, wiping it and turning it upside down. 14 I will forsake the remnant of my inheritance and give them into the hands of enemies. – 2 Kings 21:13-14 (NLT)
if you want to do life on your own;
...If you want to play in the same arena
as Assyria, Egypt, Babylon, and Persia?
...You’re gonna lose.
And it ain’t gonna be pretty.
...And it wasn’t.
But you wouldn’t know that in 2 Kings.
Because this is where Manasseh’s story ends.
But Chronicles was written hundreds of years later.
It has perspective.
It gives you the rest of the story.
Chronicles was pointing towards a future Messiah,
...Who would be a king like none other before him,
...Who would save Israel from foreign nations,
...And would bring justice and peace.
This king would be from the line of David.
Which was Manasseh’s line.
So the story continues,
10 The Lord spoke to Manasseh and his people, but they ignored all his warnings. 11 So the Lord sent the commanders of the Assyrian armies, and they took Manasseh prisoner. They put a ring through his nose, bound him in bronze chains, and led him away to Babylon. – 2 Chron. 33:10-11 (NLT)
Don’t rush past this.
Manasseh was led 900 miles
shackled with a hook in his nose.
He knew he was going to die,
Just not sure how.
Foreign powers would often
slowly and brutally kill a captured king,
Often after making him watch
As they brutally murdered his family.
The tactic inspired fear.
And it made the newly conquered people
change allegiance very quickly.
But look at verse 12,
12 In [Manasseh’s] distress he sought the favor of the Lord his God and humbled himself greatly before the God of his ancestors. 13 And when he prayed to him, the Lord was moved by his entreaty and listened to his plea; so he brought him back to Jerusalem and to his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the Lord is God. – 2 Chron.33:10-13 (NLT)
How did he know the Lord was God?
He prayed and God listened.
His heart was broken and remorseful
...and he experienced God’s forgiveness.
...He witnessed the impossible change in his heart and life.
It’s the example of the verse from last week.
If my people humble themselves and pray,
I will hear from heaven and heal them.
You can pray to the Baals.
You can plead with those in power.
But they’re deaf to your cries.
They don’t need you or want you.
It is the Lord who seeks you out.
It is the Lord who desires you
...And desires you to return.
Like a loving Father longing for his lost son,
It is never too late.
That’s the hope of Chronicles.
It’s never too late.
Stop trying to do life on your own.
Return to one who designed you
... who loves you
...and who is inviting you back into the family.
Remember who this story is written to...
The Exiles who had returned to Jerusalem.
The writer of Chronicles blames Manasseh
for the Babylonian exile.
Yet, In Babylon, Manasseh Repented
and was restored by God.
Perhaps the same is available to all of us.
How he responded
And as a result of what God had done in his life,
...The way God showed love and mercy,
And Manasseh reciprocated in kind.
His life was changed.
14 Afterward he rebuilt the outer wall of the City of David.... 15 He got rid of the foreign gods and removed the image from the temple of the Lord, as well as all the altars he had built on the temple hill and in Jerusalem; and he threw them out of the city. 16 Then he restored the altar of the Lord and sacrificed fellowship offerings and thank offerings on it, and told Judah to serve the Lord, the God of Israel. 17 The people, however, continued to sacrifice at the high places, but only to the Lord their God. –2 Chron 33:14-17 (NLT)
You (Application. So What?)
Compare Manasseh’s response to Rian’s (brag on Rian a bit).
- Salvation – Never too late
- Church – how does your life show that you’re his? (How have you changed?
- Share your story