It is an easy thing to fall into judgement of a fellow human being. Most of us have enough blatant characteristics that reflect in our behavior and identify our character. to put us in opinion jail. Yet, there is one place that cannot be judged by anyone but God, that is the human heart. We can write off people, saying they will never change – and really believe that. Of course, because we don’t believe they will change, we don’t even bother praying for them. Hence, our opinions could be a self-fulfilling prophecy.
There are some however, that will not write off people based on their conduct, but will petition the heavens for their hearts to be drawn unto the Lord. It is here that the Almighty can work. When we pray, giving God permission to act on behalf of our prayers, the action begins. How God will do it, we don’t know, and does it really matter, the important thing is to see a heart bent on evil to be converted to a heart surrendered to God.
An example of someone who seemed hell-bent was Manasseh. He began king of Israel when he was 12 years old. Look at some of the things he did;]
12 He behaved wickedly before the Eternal, acting with the same abominations as the previous nations did before the Eternal gave their land to Israel. 3 He reversed the good deeds of Hezekiah,rebuilding the high places and altars for the Baals and hoisting carved images of Asherah into the skies. He worshiped all the celestial bodies as false deities. 4-5 He even desecrated the Eternal’s temple, the place honoring His reputation which was to remain in Jerusalem forever, by building pagan altars in two courts there. 6 In the valley of Ben-hinnom, Manasseh offered his children as burnt offerings to those false gods and used every form of magic: witchcraft, divination, sorcery, and necromancy. Manasseh’s evil actions infuriated the Eternal, but the worst of his actions was 7 his installation of an image of a statue in the True God’s temple. 2 CHRONICLES 33:2-7 (The Voice)
This guy was in league with the worst of the worst~ Yet we see that God had a way of getting his attention:
11 So to get their attention, the Eternal used the Assyrian army to express His anger. The commanders captured Manasseh, forced a ring through his nose, bound his limbs with bronze chains, and carried him to Babylon as if he were an animal.12 From this position of complete powerlessness. 2 Chronicles 33:11-12 (The Voice)
This got Manasseh’s attention indeed! The next verse tells the story:
Manasseh finally humbled himself and begged the forgiveness of the Eternal God of his fathers. 2 Chronicles 33:12b (The Voice)
And guess what happened next:
13 He heard Manasseh’s prayer and found it sincere; He returned Manasseh to the throne in Jerusalem. From that day forward, Manasseh never doubted that the Eternal was the True God. 2 Chronicles 33:13 (TheVoice)
And even better than that, look what happened:
14 Having returned to proper faith, Manasseh continued his father’s work… 15 Then Manasseh began to purge the nation of the sin he had brought there. He tore out the idols from inside the Eternal’s temple and the foreign altars from the temple mount and in Jerusalem, disposing of them outside the city. 16 He then restored the Eternal’s altar and gave grateful offerings of peace and praise there. Even though Manasseh ordered the Judahites to serve only the Eternal God of Israel in the way that He commanded, 17 they continued to sacrifice to the Eternal God at other high places instead of only in Jerusalem. 2 Chronicles 33:13-17 (The Voice -select verses)
Our lesson here – when evil seems to be reigning as it is today – never write anyone off – God still has the last Word!