So Manasseh made Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem to err, and to do worse than the heathen, whom the LORD had destroyed before the children of Israel…And when he was in affliction, he besought the LORD his God, and humbled himself greatly before the God of his fathers, And prayed unto Him: (and He heard his supplication), and brought him again to Jerusalem into his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the LORD was God. 2 Chronicles 33:9, 12-13
Oh! I do not wonder at Manasseh’s sin one half so much as I wonder at God’s mercy. There was the man in the prison. He had never thought of his God except to despise His prerogative, and offend against His laws, till he was immured in that dungeon. Then his pride began to break; his haughty spirit had to yield at last. “Who is Jehovah, that I should serve Him?” he had often said. But now he is in Jehovah’s hand. Lying there half-starved in the prison, a crushed man, he begins to cry, “Jehovah, what a fool I have been! I have stood out against Thee until at length Thy sovereign power has arrested me, and Thy infinite justice has begun to avenge my crimes. What shall I do? Where shall I hide from Thy wrath? How can I escape? Is it possible to obtain Thy pardon?”…but in this awful despair he felt he must pray; and surely the first prayer he breathed must have been, “God be merciful to me a sinner.” And in his deep abasement, he continued still to pray and plead with God. And that dear Father of ours who is in heaven heard him.
If ever you can bring Him a praying heart, He will bring you a forgiving message. As soon as He saw His poor child broken down, and confessing his wrong, He took pity on him, heard, and answered him, and blotted out his sins like a cloud, and his transgressions like a thick cloud. And so it came to pass that he was delivered…Here is one that murdered men, defied God, and worshipped devils, yet he finds the way to repentance. If thou be vile as he, know that it is not thy sin, but thy impenitence, that bars heaven against thee. Who can now despair of Thy mercy, O God, that sees the tears of a Manasseh accepted?” ~ C.H. Spurgeon