All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men.”
; 2Ch_33:9-13; 2Ch_33:15-16; 2Ch_33:20-25
So that he was born three years after his father’s recovery, and perhaps it was the absence of an heir which rendered Hezekiah so loth to die.
So that could his father have foreseen what his son would be like, he might have been content to die childless.
He went from bad to worse, he rioted in evil, nothing was too bad for him, he heaped up the most daring impieties, and yet he was the son of a saint. Children may have the best examples, and yet fall into the worst sins.
They persecuted the prophets and “shed innocent blood very much.” It is a sign of great hardness of heart when warnings are despised.
His kingdom thus became so reduced that it was “as when a man wipeth a dish and turneth it upside down.” His great sin was visited with a punishment which made men’s ears to tingle as they heard of it.
Who can say that God is not ready to pardon, when he sees such a sinner saved? No man could be worse than Manasseh, and yet he obtained mercy. Oh, the depths of divine love! Let every sinner in the universe come and welcome to Jesus, for the chief of sinners has been saved.
He ceased to do evil and learned to do well, and this was the best evidence of his sincerity. The Lord grant us also to bring forth fruits meet for repentance.
How little does one man learn from the experience of another, even though it be his own father! Electing love is here to be seen. Manasseh sins, and grace gives him repentance; Amon sins, and continues in it till he perishes.
The idols He shall utterly abolish.”
What a vast difference can grace make in persons of the same age. Manasseh began to reign at twelve and Josiah at eight; Manasseh was piously trained by Hezekiah, Josiah was brought up under wicked Amon; yet Manasseh plunged into foul idolatries, and Josiah was tender and holy. The Spirit of God bloweth where he chooses.
He did not wait a moment longer than his juvenile age compelled him, but as soon as ever he was a man he acted the part of a man of God.
Thus showing contempt for idolatry in every possible manner.
This was gloriously thorough work. We need such a man now to cleanse our land from the images of Rome which are everywhere being set up by misguided men. If God does not soon interpose, our beloved country will be a Popish land once more. O Lord, frustrate the knavish tricks of Jesuits and others who are now perverting our fellow-countrymen!
Pulling down is not enough; there should be building up. Many are hasty to amend abuses, but are not half as ready to help the good cause. Former kings had used the temple as a sort of bank, from which to take gold and silver in their times of distress; but Josiah was anxious to restore it to its former splendour. It is pleasing to find one so young doing so great a work for the Lord. May the sons of our family be Josiahs.