What hit me while reading today's passage was that God's mercy and forgiveness is greater than the worst sin. We cannot out-sin God's grace. No one is so bad that God's forgiveness will no longer be enough.
Manasseh was perhaps the most evil of Judah's kings. In fact, instead of them being a nation set apart as an example to the pagans around them, Manasseh led Judah into becoming more evil than the nations God had previously destroyed (33:9). And judgment came. But God's judgement softened Manasseh's heart and finally Manasseh knew that the Lord was God. He repented and strove to make changes in Judah.
However, there are also grave consequences to evil. Manasseh repented too late to have much of a good influence, if any, on his son's life.
This is a lesson for us not to delay in turning to God. Yes, we can turn to Him at the eleventh hour and receive His forgiveness and eternal life. But our life will have been wasted instead of used for His glory, and our reward will be less in eternity than it would have been.
At the end of our NT passage, I noticed Jesus' answer to those who wanted to glorify Mary, like the Catholic church still does today. Yes, she was a faithful woman of God, and yes, it would've been an honour to be the mother of Jesus. But being the mother of Jesus alone would not save her - she still needed to come to Jesus in repentance and follow Him in obedience, just like the rest of us.
Tomorrow's Bible In a Year Passage passage: 2 Chronicles 34-36; Luke 11:29-54