September 8


God Restores a Sinner


2 Chronicles 33:1-20; 2 Kings 21


            KEY VERSE: [Manasseh] prayed unto [God]: and he was entreated of him, and heard his supplication, and brought him again to Jerusalem into his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the Lord he was God.

n      2 Chronicles 33:13


The story of Manasseh is good news for sinners. One is prompted to suppose that God would be more inclined to punish Manasseh rather than forgive him. After all, this king ignored the restorative work of his father, King Hezekiah, and plunged Israel back into the worship of idols.

Manasseh desecrates the temple by building altars for sacrifice to imaginary gods. Even witchcraft is acceptable to him. Sadly, he rules in Jerusalem for 55 years. During his reign the people became worse than heathen.

It was not until Manasseh is bound and fettered by the Assyrians, and carried off to Babylon as a prisoner, that he repents of his sins and humbly seeks God’s forgiveness. Anyone of us would have laughed at him and said, “You had your chance and you blew it; now you can suffer the consequences of your evil behavior.”

But God is different. And praise God for the difference! His mercy was available, even to the evil King Manasseh. Not only does God forgive the king, he restores him to the kingdom in Jerusalem. Then, finally, Manasseh realizes that the Lord is God!

I have a good friend whose name is Robert Powell. Years ago he drifted away from church and God. Then one day at the Post Office a church member spoke kindly to him, inviting him back to church and to her Sunday school class.

God used the woman’s kind words to bring Robert back to church and eventually back to God. Robert sought God’s forgiveness and received it. Forgiven and restored, Robert became a dynamic leader of men, first in his own church, and then beyond that as national President of United Methodist Men.

What good news we have to share with people, good people perhaps, who have drifted away from God! Our God will have mercy upon all who call on him. He is able to forgive and to restore.

Perhaps you know someone who needs to hear from you the good news that our God is willing and able to restore sinners!