When the Apple Falls Far From the Tree…

Hezekiah was one of the best kings of the nation of Judah. Yesterday we read how Hezekiah restored the Passover and had many reforms to bring the people of Judah back to God. Then he died and his son Manasseh became king. We might expect Manasseh to continue the obedience and worship of his father, Hezekiah. But that is not what happens. Manasseh was twelve years old when he became king and the Bible says that he did evil in the sight of the Lord. He rebuilt all the false places of worship and he built altars and idols to many false gods. He sacrificed his children to some of these gods. He practiced witchcraft and sorcery. In summary, verse 9 of chapter 33 says: So Manasseh seduced Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem to do more evil than the nations whom the Lord had destroyed before the children of Israel.  That is not a summary statement any of us should want on our tombstones.

What happened? Why did Manasseh fall so far away from the example of his father? We have a saying, “The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree”. This saying expresses the usual truth that children follow the path of their parents in habits, mannerisms, and behavior. But this doesn’t always happen in life and it certainly doesn’t always happen in our spiritual lives. Godly parents have children who rebel against God. Ungodly parents end up at times with a child or children who are devoted followers of Jesus. God is at work in each person’s heart and each person has a responsibility to choose to follow Jesus. If you have a child who is far away from God, continue to pray and seek to be used by God to draw him/her back. If you have a child who is following Jesus, be thankful and continue to pray that he/she continues down this path.


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