The message from the Assyrians could have devastated all hopes of God’s people, “but King Hezekiah and Isaiah the prophet prayed about this . . . And the LORD sent an angel who destroyed every mighty warrior in the enemy camp and when the Assyrian king returned home in shame some of his own children killed him” (32:20-21).
But then Hezekiah let pride get in the way (32:24-26). It doesn’t have to be that way . . . Or the way that rejects God. We CAN succeed, if we will but ASK for help from God.
Manasseh was an evil king who reigned for fifty-five years (33:1-2). He seems to have reversed all that his father did (33:3-8). “Thus Manasseh misled Judah to do more evil than the nations whom the LORD destroyed before the sons of Israel. And the LORD spoke to Manasseh and his people, but they paid no attention” (33:9-10). Not until God punished him greatly did he turn to God–in Babylon (33:12). “THEN Manasseh knew that LORD is God” (33:13).
One of the things to me that asserts the veracity of the Bible is things like this account of Manasseh. Not only do we hear that he sinned, but chapter thirty-three (verses 18-19) also tells us that all the good and all the evil he did were written down. It was typical of the day to write only the good that a king did–and to lie about that. God shows that ALL His people are human. Even the great ones (like Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and David) sinned. We are ALL in need of the salvation which is so freely offered (as well as daily forgiveness). We are given both good examples to follow and bad examples to avoid, the wisdom to know the difference, and a conscience to guide us.
After the passages about Manasseh and the previous longer passages about Hezekiah, it is telling that only a few verses are given to the evil Amon (33:21-25) and the fact that he was so bad his servants killed him.
Josiah became king at the age of eight, at sixteen he began to follow God, and four years later he began to reform the country, purging it of false gods and the worship thereof (34:1-7)..
When was the last time we grieved for the sins of our people and really sought God (34:19-21)?
Note how Ethan (the Ezrahite) speaks of David in this portion of Psalm 89. One whom God Himself has chosen, upholds, and strengthens; whose enemies God crushes. “And My faithfulness and My lovingkindness will be with him” (verse 24). His descendants will be established forever.