by Clarence E. Macartney

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The Prayers of the Old Testament (12 of 13)
The Prayer of Manasseh
Clarence E. Macartney
2 Chronicles 33:12-13

This king came to the throne of Judah when he was but
twelve years of age, and he reigned for fifty-five
years. If we may judge from the records of that reign
preserved for us in the Old Testament, he reigned
fifty-five years too long. Never had such a man ruled
over Judah and never again was his like to occupy the
throne of David. His name became a synonym for all
unrighteousness and the Babylonian captivity and all
its woes were, in popular thought, laid at the door of
Manasseh: "I will cause them to be removed into all
kingdoms of the earth, because of Manasseh the son of
Hezekiah king of Judah, for that which he did in

And what was it he did in Jerusalem? The catalogue of
his crimes is preserved for us in Kings and
Chronicles. He introduced the unclean rites of the
heathen religions into Judah, and made a grove for the
worship of the host of heaven and reared altars to
Baal, and even carried his idolatry to the extreme of
setting up an image in the temple itself. Wizards and
familiar spirits flourished in the land. His own son
he made to pass through the fire, that is, he offered
him a sacrifice to the heathen gods. To idolatry and
licentiousness was added the inevitable companion,

The age of Manasseh was an age of persecution and
bloodshed. "Moreover Manasseh shed innocent blood very
much, till he had filled Jerusalem from one end to
another." The aged prophet Isaiah is supposed to have
been one of the victims of his ferocious persecutions.
It was a day when the true worshipers of the Lord "had
trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover
of bonds and imprisonment; they were stoned, they were
sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword;
they wandered about in sheepskins and goat skins;
being destitute, afflicted, tormented, of whom the ...

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