Manasseh’s Reign over Judah
21:1 Manasseh was twelve years old when he became king, and he reigned for fifty-five years in Jerusalem. 1 His mother 2 was Hephzibah. 21:2 He did evil in the sight of 3 the Lord and committed the same horrible sins practiced by the nations 4 whom the Lord drove out from before the Israelites. 21:3 He rebuilt the high places that his father Hezekiah had destroyed; he set up altars for Baal and made an Asherah pole just like King Ahab of Israel had done. He bowed down to all the stars in the sky 5 and worshiped 6 them. 21:4 He built altars in the Lord’s temple, about which the Lord had said, “Jerusalem will be my home.” 7 21:5 In the two courtyards of the Lord’s temple he built altars for all the stars in the sky. 21:6 He passed his son 8 through the fire 9 and practiced divination and omen reading. He set up a ritual pit to conjure up underworld spirits, and appointed magicians to supervise it. 10 He did a great amount of evil in the sight of the Lord, provoking him to anger. 11 21:7 He put an idol of Asherah he had made in the temple, about which the Lord had said to David and to his son Solomon, “This temple in Jerusalem, which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, will be my permanent home. 12 21:8 I will not make Israel again leave the land I gave to their ancestors, 13 provided that they carefully obey all I commanded them, the whole law my servant Moses ordered them to obey.” 21:9 But they did not obey, 14 and Manasseh misled them so that they sinned more than the nations whom the Lord had destroyed from before the Israelites.
21:10 So the Lord announced through 15 his servants the prophets: 21:11 “King Manasseh of Judah has committed horrible sins. 16 He has sinned more than the Amorites before him and has encouraged Judah to sin by worshiping his disgusting idols. 17 21:12 So this is what the Lord God of Israel says, ‘I am about to bring disaster on Jerusalem and Judah. The news will reverberate in the ears of those who hear about it. 18 21:13 I will destroy Jerusalem the same way I did Samaria 19 and the dynasty of Ahab. 20 I will wipe Jerusalem clean, just as one wipes a plate on both sides. 21 21:14 I will abandon this last remaining tribe among my people 22 and hand them over to their enemies; they will be plundered and robbed by all their enemies, 23 21:15 because they have done evil in my sight 24 and have angered me from the time their ancestors left Egypt right up to this very day!’”