2 Chronicles 33: Changing Lives in Prison
2 Chronicles 33 brings Judah into a difficult spot. Manasseh became king after his father Hezekiah passed away, but he did not follow in the great tradition that his father had established.
2Ch 33:9 So Manasseh made Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem to err, and to do worse than the heathen, whom the LORD had destroyed before the children of Israel.
It is definitely something to say that the people were worse than all of the idolatrous nations that Israel had destroyed in the past. It must have gotten pretty bad.
Like God seems to do quite a bit, He brought a storm into Manasseh’s life to make him realize what he was doing and to understand that he needed God.
2Ch 33:11 Wherefore the LORD brought upon them the captains of the host of the king of Assyria, which took Manasseh among the thorns, and bound him with fetters, and carried him to Babylon.
2Ch 33:12 And when he was in affliction, he besought the LORD his God, and humbled himself greatly before the God of his fathers,
2Ch 33:13 And prayed unto him: and he was intreated of him, and heard his supplication, and brought him again to Jerusalem into his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the LORD he was God.
He had a life-changing experience. He was no longer interested in ignoring God. It took a difficult time to make him realize that, but God does that from time to time.
He loves people, and He wants to bring people into a relationship with Him. Manasseh must have had solid Biblical teaching as a child given who his father was, but he went away from it for some reason.
God brought him back though. He didn’t just forget about him. While he was in captivity, something changed for Manasseh. He suddenly realized what he had been doing wrong, and after his time in chains was done, he came back as a better leader who brought the people of Israel in the right direction.
It must not have been pleasant to be in a Babylonian prison, but that is what he needed to realize his problems. God will allow things to come into our lives to help us grow as well as correct us if we start to wander.