In the assessment of the writer of the Book of Kings, Manasseh ranks as the worst of all of the kings of Judah. It was because of his sins that God did not spare even King Josiah, Manasseh's grandson, considered the most righteous of Judah's kings since David. Manasseh is also the king considered most blameworthy for leading the people of Judah into idolatry and thus causing God to punish the nation through the Babylonian exile.
The Book of Chronicles, however, reports that Manasseh repented of his sins and that God heard his prayer of repentance, after which Manasseh turned back to God and did away with idolatry. Although he allowed the high places outside of Jerusalem to operate, the people worshiped God alone at these shrines.
Manasseh is, thus, something of an enigma. It appears that the biblical writers, unable to otherwise explain King Josiah's death in battle against Pharaoh Necho II at Megiddo, may have made his grandfather Manasseh the "fall guy." Josiah's death at the height of power must have deeply shocked the prophets and priests who saw him as a new Joshua, whom God would surely protect. Manasseh has thus gone down in history as Judah's most wicked king, and the man most responsible for the nation's ultimate demise.
The report in the Book of Chronicles regarding his repentance, as well as the touching Prayer of Manasseh of the deutero-canonical literature, however, leads us to wonder if perhaps there is more to Manasseh's story than meets the eye. In any case, since the Divine Principle teaches that one day even Satan will be forgiven and restored, we can be assured that, even if he was indeed Judah's worst king, there is still hope for Manasseh's redemption.