2 Kings 21* Wicked reign of Manasseh. (1-9) The prophetic denunciationsagainst Judah. (10-18) Wicked reign and death of Amon. (19-26)1-9 Young persons generally desire to become their own masters,and to have early possession of riches and power. But this, forthe most part, ruins their future comfort, and causes mischiefto others. It is much happier when young persons are shelteredunder the care of parents or guardians, till age givesexperience and discretion. Though such young persons are lessindulged, they will afterwards be thankful. Manasseh wroughtmuch wickedness in the sight of the Lord, as if on purpose toprovoke him to anger; he did more evil than the nations whom theLord destroyed. Manasseh went on from bad to worse, till carriedcaptive to Babylon. The people were ready to comply with hiswishes, to obtain his favour and because it suited theirdepraved inclinations. In the reformation of large bodies,numbers are mere time-servers, and in temptation fall away. 10-18 Here is the doom of Judah and Jerusalem. The words usedrepresent the city emptied and utterly desolate, yet notdestroyed thereby, but cleansed, and to be kept for the futuredwelling of the Jews: forsaken, yet not finally, and only as tooutward privileges, for individual believers were preserved inthat visitation. The Lord will cast off any professing peoplewho dishonour him by their crimes, but never will desert hiscause on earth. In the book of Chronicles we read of Manasseh'srepentance, and acceptance with God; thus we may learn not todespair of the recovery of the greatest sinners. But let nonedare to persist in sin, presuming that they may repent andreform when they please. There are a few instances of theconversion of notorious sinners, that none may despair; and butfew, that none may presume. 19-26 Amon profaned God's house with his idols; and Godsuffered his house to be polluted with his blood. Howunrighteous soever they were that did it, God was righteous whosuffered it to be done. Now was a happy change from one of theworst, to one of the best of the kings of Judah. Once more Judahwas tried with a reformation. Whether the Lord bears long withpresumptuous offenders, or speedily cuts them off in their sins,all must perish who persist in refusing to walk in his ways.
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