Hezekiah’s son, Manasseh, begins his 55 year reign at the age of twelve (verse 1). He has the dubious distinction of being known as the worst king Judah ever had. He rebuilt the high places that his father, Hezekiah, had torn down. He built altars for Baal, set a carved image of Asherah in the house of the Lord, and even sacrificed one of his own sons (verse 6). Verses 9 and 11 say that Manasseh did more evil than the Amorites and all of the people God had brought Israel to the promised land to remove. Manasseh’s despicable reign ends at his death in verse 18; and his son Amon walks right in his footsteps (verse 21) until his death in verse 26.
The disaster and captivity that had befallen Israel has been hinted at for the last few chapters, and is now declared a certainty by God in verses 10-14 (note especially verse 13).
some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers
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