Kingdom’s are passed down usually from generation to generation. There is no guarantee that the successor will reign like his father did. We see that throughout the kingdom reign of Israel. After Solomon, the kingdom divided. Both smaller kingdoms ran through multiple changes of kings. It was only three generations after King Solomon that his great-grandson leads Judea away from worshipping God to idols worship. From there it switched back and forth. In Jeremiah 15, there are two kings that are talked about Hezekiah and his son Manasseh.
Starting with King Hezekiah, took over the throne at the age of 25 from his father Ahaz. Ahaz did evil in the sight of God and sat up idol worship all over Judah. Once, king, Hezekiah destroyed all the temples for idol worship his father had built, unsealed the doors to the temple and reinstated the Levite priest, along with Passover as a national holiday. He even had the bronze serpent that Moses had made because the people had made it into an idol. Hezekiah means God is my strength, which we see in the actions he took.
Where his son Manasseh, which means, to forget, is exactly what he did. Taking over at the age of 12 when Hezekiah was killed, he forgot the God of his father. He built altars to Baal, set up an Asherah pole, made his sone sacrificed his own son through the fire of Baal, practiced divination, sought omens, consulted mediums and spiritists. He topped this all off by building two altars inside the temple of God to the starry host, bowing down and worshipping them. Is there any question as to why God’s wrath is turned against Judah especially, Jerusalem? While in captivity Manasseh humbled himself before God and prayed to Him. God heard him and brought him back to Jerusalem. Though he had a changed heart, removed the false gods and altars, cleared out the temple and restored the LORD’s altar, and sacrificed fellowship along with thanks offerings on it, he was unable to lead the people out of the idol worship he led them into. Tragically, his own son, Amon, went back to worshipping the idols when he became king.
As we see with Manasseh, God will hear us when we pray as long as we humble ourselves before Him. As for our children, they learn from the example we set before them. We need to pray that God will protect their hearts from the wrong influence and keep them for His purpose.
(Photo by Roman Kraft on Unsplash)