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O.T. Handout #37: Isaiah, Themes, prophecies, D&C, Book of Mormon, Day of Jehovah, Apostasy, cleansings Oct 2014
Isaiah’s 7-Part Structure: Referenced in the text
Part 1. Ruin and Rebirth (ch 1-5, 34-35)
2. Rebellion and Compliance (ch 6-8, 36-40)
3. Punishment and Deliverance (ch 9-12, 41-46)
4. Humiliation and Exaltation (ch 13-23, 47
5. Suffering and Salvation (ch 24-27, 48-54)
6. Disloyalty and Loyalty (ch 28-31, 55-59)
7. Disinheritance and Inheritance (ch 32-33, 60-66)
(From GIleadi: www.isaiahexplained.com)
Though we begin the lesson in Isa 22, we should know of the Messianic promise in Part Three: (9:1-7). As the Assyrians swept down against the alliance of Israel (Ephraim) and the Syrians, they destroyed Damascus and captured the northern region of Israel, later called the Galilee (2 Kings 15:27–31). In spite of this invasion and the threat it posed for the rest of Israel and for Judah in the south, Isaiah prophesied of the coming of the Messiah as the coming of a light (9:2) He said the land will not remain in darkness. In v.6-7 some of the Savior’s titles are given: “Wonderful, Counsellor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father”.
Ch. 11:1 (Part Three) The D&C provides interpretation: (D&C 113:1–6). The stem of Jesse is stated to be Christ. The rod out of the stem of Jesse was said to be “a servant in the hands of Christ, who is partly a descendant of Jesse as well as of Ephraim, or of the house of Joseph, on whom there is laid much power” (D&C 113:4). This scripture refers to the Prophet Joseph Smith and to Ephraim’s leadership in the restoration in the last days.
Ch 11 contains wonderful prophecies about earth having knowledge of the Lord (vs 9), the gathering of Israel from the world (vs 10-16), the Ensign and its significance (vs.10,12), and the recovery of the lost tribes (vs 11). Also the most famous verses foretelling the reuniting of Judah and the families of Joseph: Ephraim and Manasseh (vs 13,14).
Ch 12 contains a millennial hymn of praise for the time the Lord will reign “in the midst of his people”, (vs 6). In vs 12:
“God Is My Salvation … the Lord Jehovah Is My Strength”
A literal translation of this verse reveals the sacred names and name-titles of Deity as they are used scripturally.
“‘Behold El is my salvation,
I shall trust and not be afraid;
For my strength and my song is Yah, Yehovah,
And he has become my salvation.’
El’ is the singular of Elohim. Yah’ is a contracted form of Jehovah or Yehovah, which in the Bible is usually rendered in English as ‘LORD.’ See Ex 6:3; Ps. 83:18; Isa. 26:4. The short form Yah occurs in Hebrew also in Ex 15:2 and Psalms 118:14.
Isaiah 13-23 (Part Four) contains a collection of “burdens” or pronouncements upon nations of Isaiah’s time. Babylon, Assyria, Philistia, Moab, Damascus (Syria), Egypt, and others all came under the prophet’s gloomy oracles of judgment.
Isaiah 22:9 (Part Four) refers to the Valley of Vision, Jerusalem, his home, the place where he received his visions and revelations. This chapter warns that sports and amusement addicts suffer enemy invasion (vs.2,13, 17-19, see also 5:5, 10:4, others). Jehovah appoints his servant Eliakim in place of another and give him the keys of house of David (vs 25).
Ch 22 deals with the development of a greater Babylon. It highlights a reversal of circumstances between Zion and non-Zion from Part One, the coexistence of two contrasting peoples and their kings from Part Two, and the impossibility of a single entity from the various historical types established in Part Three.
Ch 24-27 (Part Five) emphasizes the themes of suffering and salvation and shows the interrelationship between the two. The first unit (Isaiah 24,25,26,27) depicts an predicted distress overtaking a composite city, an entity like Babylon in prior material. The earth and its inhabitants, alien nations, tyrannical entities, proud kindred peoples, and Jehovah’s reprobate people suffer a full measure of covenantal malediction (destruction).
Isaiah repeated his seven main themes throughout the 66 chapters. While reading the assigned chapters, refer to these and additional clarifying verses throughout the Book of Isaiah for greater understanding: See www.isaiah explained.com for Dr. Avraham GIleadi’s New Translation and Concordance, the key that opens fully the Book of Isaiah.
Isaiah 27:1–6. What Are the Meanings of Leviathan , Dragon , and Serpent ? When Israel is restored, she “shall blossom and bud, and fill the face of the world with fruit” (Isaiah 27:6). That fruit is the gospel of peace. At the same time the Lord “shall punish leviathan the piercing serpent, … and he shall slay the dragon” (v. 1). Both dragon and serpent are scriptural terms for Satan, the common enemy of God and all mankind (see Rev 12:9). Thus, leviathan probably includes not only Satan personally but all who serve him. In other words, what Isaiah saw is the necessary destruction of Babylon, or the world, before Zion can be fully established.
Isaiah 29:11–12. What Was the “Book That Is Sealed” and to Whom Were Its “Words” Delivered?
Early in the process of translating the Book of Mormon, Martin Harris desired proof that the translation Joseph Smith was making was genuine. He obtained permission to carry a copy of several of the “words” from the plates, together with their translation, to some learned men. Martin Harris’s account given to the Prophet Joseph Smith states that he took the copy to Professor Charles Anthon of New York City, who certified that the characters were real and correctly translated. But he retracted his statement by asking for his certificate back and tearing it to bits. Martin Harris reports that Anthon said that “if I would bring the plates to him he would translate them. I informed him that part of the plates were sealed, and that I was forbidden to bring them. He replied, ‘I cannot read a sealed book.’ I left him, and went to Dr. Mitchell, who sanctioned what Professor Anthon had said respecting both the characters and the translation.” (Joseph Smith—History 1:65.) The unlearned man to whom the book was delivered was, of course, Joseph Smith.
Isaiah 29:17. What Relationship Does This Verse Have to the Coming Forth of the Book of Mormon
“The gathering of the Jews to Palestine is one of the most outstanding and significant of all the signs of the times. The Lord said through Jeremiah: ‘… I will cause them to return to the land that I gave to their fathers, and they shall possess it.’ (Jer. 30:3.) Isaiah indicated that Palestine…was destined to be turned into a fruitful field in connection with the gathering of the Jews to their homeland. …
“A sacred book was to come forth before that time—one which was new to the world…a book to be offered in the latter days to a learned man who would reject it, but to be given by divine means to an unlettered man through whom it was to be given to the world. …” That book was the Book of Mormon. (Mark E. Peterson)
Theme of Ch 24: Wickedness by the earth’s inhabitants leads to a cataclysmic destruction and collapse into chaos: Pairs: 24:1/ 6:11-12, 24:2/5:13-14, 24:3/10:13, 24:4/34:1-2, 24:5/26:8-9.
Theme of Ch. 25: Wickedness by the earth’s inhabitants leads to a cataclysmic destruction and collapse into chaos. Pairs: 25:1/37:26, 25:2/26:5, 25:4/14:30, 25:8/9:225:5/29:19-20, 25:11/16:6-7.
Theme of C
h. 26: Unlike their oppressive rulers, the righteous survive the earth’s desolation while others resurrect. Pairs: 26:1/60:18, 26:3/31:5, 26:4/44:8, 26:7/2:3, 26:12/57:1,2, 25:21/59:17-19.
Theme of Ch 28: (Part Six) Ephraim and its prophets reap disaster for being delusional and for rejecting divine revelation. Pairs: 28:2/8:7-8, 28:4/18:5, 28:15/30:28, 28:17/32:19.
Theme of Ch 29: Unsealing the sealed book of Isaiah overturns the learning of academics and exposes spiritual error. Pairs: 29:2/64:10-12, 29:5/26:5, 29:6/66:15, 29:18/42:7, 29:5/54:15, 29:15 /32:17.
Theme of Ch 30: At Jehovah’s coming the rebellious suffer destruction but those who prove loyal enjoy deliverance. Pairs: 30:5/20:3-4, 30:10/29:10, 30:28/8:8 and 36:16-18,
Isaiah 24:5. Why Was Changing the Ordinances So Serious?
The gospel ordinances are part of the specific means outlined by the Lord whereby one can overcome his natural state, receive a spiritual rebirth, and become like God. Each ordinance was designed by God to teach spiritual truths and move His children toward godliness. When the ordinances are changed, their power to save is lost. The Prophet Joseph Smith said of the ordinances: “If there is no change of ordinances, there is no change of Priesthood. Wherever the ordinances of the Gospel are administered, there is the Priesthood.” (Teachings,p. 158.)
Isaiah 24:6–12. The Result of Apostasy. The punishment decreed for breaking God’s everlasting covenant is to be burned with fire. These verses describe the great mourning that will accompany the destruction.
Isaiah 24:19–23 Great Physical Changes Will Attend the Second Coming of the Lord. Events and conditions as they will be just before or in conjunction with the Second Coming. A more penetrating description of these same events is found in Doctrine and Covenants 88:86–94. The “prisoners … gathered in the pit” and those “shut up in the prison” (Isaiah 24:22) are those locked in the spirit world awaiting the preaching of the Gospel.
Isaiah 30. “Woe to the Rebellious Children”
Israel and Judah had been cautioned by the Lord not to put their trust in other nations. They refused to hearken, turned to Egypt for protection from the Assyrians The Lord berated them for seeking to “strengthen themselves in the strength of Pharaoh, and to trust in the shadow of Egypt” (Isaiah 30:2). All of this, Isaiah said, “shall help in vain, and to no purpose” (v. 7). As a result, Israel would be broken as easily as a clay pot (see v. 14).
The theme of Isaiah 30is that men trust in the wisdom of other men instead of looking to God for counsel ( vv. 1–2) or to His prophets for instruction ( vv. 9–11). The Lord stated that this rejection of God’s word is the direct cause of their destruction (vv. 12–14).
From Old Testament Student Manual: Malachi to II Kings
While removed from each other by more than 2,500 years, Isaiah and Joseph Smith were both called by the same God, were engaged in the same type of spiritual calling, and were blessed with the same priesthood. Compare some of the revelatory phrases of these two prophets to see how closely they parallel each other:
1:18, 11:1-10, 24:5 50:10, 113:1-6, 1:15
1:19, 25;6 64:34, 58:8
8:16, 24:20 88:84, 87; 109:46
Isaiah was a prophet-statesman who ministered during the reigns of four kings of Judah. The historical records of this time come from three major sources: the second book of Kings, the second book of Chronicles, and the writings of Isaiah. As has been mentioned, Isaiah, the son of Amoz, was a member of the royal family. He made his first public appearance as the divinely inspired prophet in the year of Uzziah’s affliction with leprosy, and he ministered to the people for about ninety years, during the reigns of kings Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, andHezekiah.
Isaiah had seen the growth of a new empire, Assyria, and the fall of the Northern Kingdom of Israel. Judea alone remained, and it was the last bulwark of the true faith in One G-d. Isaiah brought to king and people the message of the holiness of G-d, the L-rd of hosts, at a time when idolatry seemed to be taking hold in the land of Judah. He preached justice and charity at a time when the morals of the people had reached a new low.
Tradition records that Isaiah died as a martyr by being sawn in two at the hands of Manasseh.
Learn the Manner of Prophesying Used among the Jews in Isaiah’s Day.
One of the reasons many of the Nephites did not understand the words of Isaiah was that they did not know “concerning the manner of prophesying among the Jews.” (2 Ne. 25:1.) And so it is with all Christendom, plus many Latter-day Saints.
Nephi chose to couch his prophetic utterances in plain and simple declarations. But among his fellow Hebrew prophets it was not always appropriate so to do. Because of the wickedness of the people, Isaiah and others often spoke in figures, using types and shadows to illustrate their points. Their messages were, in effect, hidden in parables. (2 Ne. 25:1–8.)
For instance, the virgin birth prophecy is dropped into the midst of a recitation of local historical occurrences so that to the spiritually untutored it could be interpreted as some ancient and unknown happening that had no relationship to the birth of the Lord Jehovah into mortality some 700 years later. (Isa. 7) Many chapters dealing with latter-day apostasy and the second coming of Christ are written relative to ancient nations whose destruction was but a symbol, a type, and a shadow, of that which would fall upon all nations when the great and dreadful day of the Lord finally came. Chapters 13 and 14 are an example of this.
“In the book of Isaiah, as recorded in the King James Version of the Bible, there are 66 chapters composed of 1,292 verses. Isaiah’s writings, in an even more perfect form than found in our Bible, were preserved on the brass plates, and from this source the Nephite prophets quoted 414 verses and paraphrased at least another 34. (In a half a dozen or so instances duplicate verses are quoted or paraphrased.) In other words, one-third of the book of Isaiah (32 percent, to be exact) is quoted in the Book of Mormon and about another 3 percent is paraphrased.” From: Ten Keys To Understanding of Isaiah By Bruce McConkie of the Twelve
Isaiah teaches that our chief sins are the injustices we do to each other and our idolatry before God. Injustices may take many forms: inequality, graft, enmity, evil speaking, persecution, oppression, tyranny, and so forth. We worship idols when we set our goals on the things of this world, stealing away our hearts and minds. The effect is spiritual blindness. We assume we are right with God, while our religion becomes but a substitute for the true covenant relationship God requires. This isn’t enough to save us in the coming “Day of Jehovah.” Still, there is a redeeming side. Isaiah predicts that a few individuals will respond to God’s invitation to repent.
An entire separation of the righteous and the wicked occurs at the end of the world. While a glorious new age dawns for those of God’s people who repent, doomsday in all its horrors overtakes those who don’t. After sending prophets to warn humanity one last time, God brings on his judgment: “Come near, you nations, and hear! Pay attention, you peoples! Let the earth give heed, and all who are upon it, the world, and all who spring from it. Jehovah’s rage is upon all nations, his fury upon all their hosts; he has doomed them, consigned them to the slaughter. . . . For it is Jehovah’s day of vengeance, the year of retribution on behalf of Zion” (Isaiah 34:1–2, 8).
From the time Israel’s ten northern tribes broke away from the southern tribes of Judah, Israel has remained divided. When Solomon’s son Rehoboam raised the people’s taxes and refused to heed the counsel of the elders, Jeroboam, Solomon’s servant, began ruling over the Northern Kingdom (1 Kings 11:29–32; 12:1–20). Because Ephraim was its leading tribe, the Northern Kingdom was often referred to simply as Ephraim (Isaiah 7:1–9; Hosea 5:1–14). Likewise, because the tribe of Judah led the Southern Kingdom, that kingdom was known as Judah (ibid.). That day—“the day Ephraim broke away from Judah” (Isaiah 7:17)—became a national tragedy.
And yet, Isaiah predicts that Ephraim and Judah will reunite when God gathers Israel from dispersion in an End-Time exodus from the four directions of the earth (Isaiah 11:10–12). In that day, “Ephraim’s jealousy will pass away and the hostile ones of Judah will be cut off; Ephraim will not envy Judah, nor Judah resent Ephraim” (Isaiah 11:13). Ezekiel, too, predicts that Israel will reunite: “I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, where they have gone, and will gather them on every side and bring them into their own land. . . And they shall no more be two nations, nor shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all” (Ezekiel 37:21–22).
See also: https://mormonsandjews.net , www.isaiahinstitute.com, http://isaiahprophecy.com