Summary: IN THIS SERMON WE SEE KING MANASSEH’ SINS, KING MANASSEH’ SALVATION AND KING MANASSEH’S SERVICE.
KING MANASSEH-A MIRACLE OF GRACE
2 CHRON. 33:1-16
How much sinning is too much sinning? How bad is too bad for someone to be and to lose hope of a future with God? How late is too late to come to oneself and reconcile with God? How simply disgusting and awful is it possible to be and turn to God?
Please turn to 2 Chronicles 33, and let us read together and consider together what we can learn from one ancient example. Once there was an ancient king named Manasseh and he was not the kind of person who seemed to have much hope for a future with God.
I-NOTICE KING MANASSEH’ SINS: 2-9, 16
A-He DEPARTED from the Faith of his Father 2-3
But did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD, like unto the abominations of the heathen, whom the LORD had cast out before the children of Israel. 3 He rebuilt the high places his father Hezekiah had demolished; he also erected altars to the Baals and made Asherah poles. He bowed down to all the starry hosts and worshiped them.
ILLUSTRATION:COLUMIST L. M. BOYD recently described the amazing good fortune of a man named Jack Wurm. In 1949, Mr. Wurm was broke and out of a job. One day he was walking along a San Francisco beach when he came across a bottle with a piece of paper in it. As he read the note, he discovered that it was the last will and testament of Daisy Singer Alexander, heir to the Singer sewing machine fortune. The note read, "To avoid confusion, I leave my entire estate to the lucky person who finds this bottle and to my attorney, Barry Cohen, share and share alike." According to Boyd, the courts accepted the theory that the heiress had written the note 12 years earlier, and had thrown the bottle into the Thames River in London, from where it had drifted across the oceans to the feet of a penniless and jobless Jack Wurm. His chance discovery netted him over 6 million dollars in cash and Singer stock. How would you like to have been making Mr. Wurm’s footprints on that San Francisco beach? What a find! And yet 6 million dollars doesn’t even begin to compare with our spiritual inheritance!
MANASSEH HAD A GREAT FORTUNE left to him, in his father faith, but he refused it.
PERHAPS you have been blessed with a Godly heritage. It’s easy to look upon that heritage as old fashioned and belonging to another age, but our parents, spiritual and natural, learned at great cost that sin were not to be trifled with. If you depart from the faith of your fathers you’re headed for destruction
HE SACRIFICED his own children .v-6 This was always a heinous practice to God and God’s people and it involved the idea of invoking the pleasure and favour of a god by giving to him what was considered your greatest treasure- your children.
ILLUSTRATION: A FARMER was walking over his farm with a friend, exhibiting his crops, herds of cattle, and flocks of sheep. His friend was greatly impressed and highly pleased, especially with the splendid sheep. He had seen the same breed frequently before, but never had seen such fine specimens. With great earnestness he asked how he had succeeded in rearing such flocks. His simple answer was: "I take care of my lambs."
HE CONSULTED mediums, fortunetellers, and sorcerers. v-6All of this was forbidden from the earliest times but there is a certain appeal to these because they are so very emotional and sensual and mysterious. Today, this would translate into the seeking and following of personal horoscopes (I hope you know that Christians don’t do this!), seeking fortune tellers who might read tea leaves or tarot cards, using the ouija board
ILLUSTRATION: A WIZARD, sitting in the marketplace, was telling the fortunes of the passers-by when a person ran up in great haste, and announced to him that the doors of his house had been broken open and that all his goods were being stolen. He sighed heavily and hastened away as fast as he could run. A neighbor saw him running and said, "Oh! you fellow there! you say you can foretell the fortunes of others; how is it you did not foresee your own?’
There are many in modern society who are turning to fortunetellers in order to seek answers from those who cannot give it. Instead, they should really turn to the Light of the world!
B-He DEFILED the Temple of the Lord
vv. 4-5 He built altars in the temple of the LORD, of which the LORD had said, "My Name will remain in Jerusalem forever." In both courts of the temple of the LORD, he built altars to all the starry hosts.