“It’s too late – he’ll never change.”
“It’s useless ... she’ll never turn to God.”
Have you ever thought or said those words about someone who does not know the Lord? Someone, perhaps, whom you love and for whom you have been praying for years? Longing for their salvation and seeing not a hint of change, you feel beaten down, defeated, depressed, and dejected. You hang your head and give up praying. It is hopeless.
Hold that thought.
Imagine a man. A man whose net worth is billions of dollars. He could be described as filthy rich ... “filthy” because his money comes from a huge porn empire that produces the most lewd and obscene perversions conceivable.
He is deeply involved in the occult, drawing to himself self-proclaimed sorcerers, witches, warlocks, psychics, and mediums. He does not do this in secret ... he flaunts it on news interviews and even posts videos on social media where he abuses his own children in Satanic rituals.
A litany of crimes has been attributed to him: theft, fraud, rape, extortion, and murder. But despite all the evidence and all the witnesses, he has never spent a day in prison or even paid a minimal fine. Crooked cops, slick lawyers, and bribed judges make sure of that.
He wields tremendous power in the political sphere through legitimate and illegitimate means. The illegitimate means include his veritable army of thugs who blackmail, threaten, assault, and kill to get the job done.
Decade after decade, this man has used his money, power, and influence to inflame and incite, deceive and mislead, crush and destroy. He is now in his mid-60s. After a lifetime of such evil – there is no other word for it – you would probably think that he was beyond redemption. Sure, repentance and salvation are “theoretically possible,” you would agree; but, practically speaking, that is not going to happen. Why bother praying? It is hopeless.
It is not hopeless. Because this man has a name, and this is not the end of his story.
This fictional profile is based on the life of Manasseh, king of Judah, whose biography can be found in 2 Chronicles 33. Manasseh was the longest-reigning king over Judah, and committed such evil in his 55 years on the throne that God told Jeremiah He would make Judah “an object of horror among all the kingdoms of the earth because of Manasseh, the son of Hezekiah, the king of Judah, for what he did in Jerusalem” (Jeremiah 15:4).
God brought judgment on Manasseh in the form of Assyrian captivity. And there, this evil, idolatrous, murderous king humbled himself and prayed. And it says, “When he prayed to Him, God was moved by his entreaty and heard his supplication, and brought him again to Jerusalem to his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the Lord was God” (2 Chronicles 33:13).
Repentance. Salvation. After a lifetime of atrocities.
Now, think about the people in your life who do not know the Lord.
Do not give up.
Keep on praying in the name of Jesus.
Keep on sharing the good news of Jesus.
Keep on living the love of Jesus.
There is always hope.