2 Kings 21:1-2
“Manasseh was twelve years old when he became king, and he reigned fifty-five years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Hephzibah. And he did evil in the sight of the Lord, according to the abominations of the nations whom the Lord had cast out before the children of Israel.”
Manasseh, king of Judah, will go down in history as the king who caused the fall of the nation. It was not his foreign policy, his economic plan, or his tax code, that killed the nation. Instead, it was his view of God and his stance regarding sin that would weaken the nation, and lead to its collapse. Later we read,
2 Kings 23:26 “Nevertheless the Lord did not turn from the fierceness of His great wrath, with which His anger was aroused against Judah, because of all the provocations with which Manasseh had provoked Him.”
The sins of Manasseh include rebuilding high places, building altars to false gods, practicing soothsaying, and even sacrificing his children on altars to false gods. But the real driving force behind his sin was that he “paid no attention” to the word of God.
Our sins and their consequences may look entirely different than those of this ancient king, but the ultimate cause is always the same. When we ignore the Word and ways of God, and do life our own way, we will find ourselves living for things that will destroy us, and negatively impact the generations that follow us. For our sake, and the sake of those who will follow, we should carefully examine the Word of a God, and live according to the ways of God.