In the Book of Mormon we have an abnormal fixation on a “dead” prophet by the name of Isaiah.
As we see from the Index to the “triple combination”, the Book of Mormon prophets referred to Isaiah regularly;
Nephi1 rehearses to his brethren the words of Isaiah: 1 Ne. 15:20 .
Nephi1 reads prophecies of Isaiah to persuade his people to believe in the Redeemer: 1 Ne. 19:23 .
Jacob2 speaks of things to come by reading words of Isaiah: 2 Ne. 6:4 .
Isaiah spake concerning all house of Israel: 2 Ne. 6:5 .
Isaiah saw the Redeemer: 2 Ne. 11:2 .
Jacob2 writes words of Isaiah to lift hearts: 2 Ne. 11:8 .
Isaiah spake things hard to understand: 2 Ne. 25:1 .
Isaiah’s words plain to those with spirit of prophecy: 2 Ne. 25:4 .
my soul delighteth in words of Isaiah: 2 Ne. 25:5 .
judgments spoken of by Isaiah have come to pass: 2 Ne. 25:6 .
men shall know when prophecies of Isaiah are fulfilled: 2 Ne. 25:7 .
the Messiah shall be led as sheep before shearer, as Isaiah said: Mosiah 15:6 .
Isaiah testified of Redemption: Hel. 8:18–20 .
words of Isaiah shall be fulfilled: 3 Ne. 16:17–20 .
In addition to these chapters, Nephi included his translation of twelve CONSECUTIVE chapters of Isaiah in his record, and Moroni kept it in when he compiled the record, even though they BOTH knew we would have the record in our scriptures. To add to its clear importance, when the Savior came to the people in America, He said,
“Yea, a commandment I give unto you that ye search these things diligently; for great are the words of Isaiah.” 3 Nephi 23:1
And Moroni said,
“Search the prophecies of Isaiah.” Mormon 8:23
Why such an emphasis on a dead prophet in a record given to a people with “living” prophets?
As we should know, living prophets, if they are real prophets, don’t contradict dead prophets. Isaiah saw our day, he saw those that call themselves latter-day saints and gave us a message. As you read the words of Isaiah, remember these words of the Lord to His people today,
“For all those who will not endure chastening, but deny me, cannot be sanctified” D&C 101:5
“whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth” Hebrews 12:6
We feel the love of God, when we feel of His chastening.
Reading Nephi’s version in conjunction with a modern translation by LDS Hebrew expert, Avraham Gileadi, as well as taking Isaiah’s word in it’s most obvious meaning, not spiritualizing them (PLEASE SEE pages one and two of chapter 1 in “A Voice of Warning” by Parley P Pratt), bringing into it my understanding of the scriptures and words of ancient and modern, to provide a picture of the whole.
This is not a pretty picture for us as a people, which is why I think we must see it, and why the Lord has put so much of an emphasis on us reading these words of this “dead” prophet.
I am no one, I make no special claims to authority to be able to tell you what the word of God means or doesn’t mean. Take my thoughts on the words of Isaiah with that in mind.
2 Nephi 12
1-3 Pre 2nd Coming/pre return to Jackson County – In the mountains (State of Deseret)
4 Millennial – Jackson county – 2 HQ – Political government in Jackson County – Religious/Church/Priesthood HQ in Jerusalem
5-9 Says LDS (of all stripes) are wicked, specifically says “HOUSE OF JACOB” (HELLO!) which means Gods people. He says we are
ALL gone astray
Listen/go to/take heed the words of enemies (radio/TV talking heads, false spiritual leaders, etc)
Find comfort in mingling w/Babylon
No end to our wealth, money, cars, etc
Worship idols, especially those of which they have made themselves, jobs, cars, buildings, toys, electronics, etc, etc
Unrepentant (those that insist their actions are inline with the Gospel, or are at least not opposed to it) are not to be forgiven
11-21 Everyone will be humbled – lose earthly possessions, everything that we worship (put ahead of the things of God) will be destroyed
22 We are commanded to turn away from the things of the world, turn to God.
4 God sends selfish and criminal LDS to rule
5 Government programs oppress everyone through theft, through force, through destruction of liberty, etc
6-7 People will ask others with nothing but superficial qualifications to rule over them, but those people will not want that responsibility
8-9 Gods people have fallen because of their “gospel” teachings and actions are anti-Christ, their sins are obvious and can’t be hidden and is a witness against them, they embrace sodomy, they have brought their own destruction and only have themselves to blame. `
10 There will still be righteous among them and they shall enjoy the fruits of their righteousness but they still need to be comforted in this fact most likely because other “holy” people will be mocking them and they will not prosper materially.
12 Gods people put women instead of Priesthood in actual or effectual authority over them, their leaders mislead them, taking them in a more worldly path in the name of “modern revelation”.
13-14 God (with the righteous) will judge His people and their rulers/leaders
15 God asks what the people think they are doing by oppressing the poor (Celestial Marriage persecutions?)
16 Worldly women among the Saints are identified as wearing make-up, being proud/vain and wearing worldly and revealing clothing
17-23 The vanity of Gods people will be taken from them by the removal of their physical/worldly beauty
25-26 The men will be killed in the battles caused by their vanity and land will be wiped clean from foreign and domestic battles
1 Women will want plural marriage as one form of penance and will not even ask to be taken care of but will offer to feed/clothe themselves just to remove their sins of the past.
2 A righteous group of Saints will have branched off (Priesthood) and you will know them by their fruits
3 Those that remain after the cleansing will be the righteous
5-6 God will watch over and protect this righteous remnant
1-2 Speaking of Gods house (people), after its formation, it brought forth wild (untrue, corrupt, unfaithful, close to, but not what He (God) wanted) fruit.
3 God says the difference between His commandments and the fruit of those who obey them and the majority of those that call themselves His people is obvious but there was nothing else He could have done to make us be like Him
5-7 God (by Himself of through His servants) will break down the protection of His people (D&C 101 – parable of the vineyard) will break down the protection of His people and will leave it/them alone and allow corruption to come among us.
8 warns of putting houses to close together (agenda 21, urban sprawl, etc)
9 Homes will be left empty
10 The land will stop giving her fruits/water
11-12 A warning to those who focus on partying and worldliness and take no account to what God has commanded
13 Gods people are in physical/spiritual bondage because they refused to learn the ways of God, which leads to famine and drought
14 Death becomes widespread taking in the worldly among Gods people en mass \
18 Beware of worldly attachments, stuck to us like a trailer
19 People say they want god to hurry up and come back but are actually unprepared because of their worldly diversions/attachments
20 Warning to those Saints who mock or treat lightly their covenants saying it is alright if they don’t keep them and make excuses (making it good to do evil) for why it is wrong to keep their covenants (making it evil to do good)
21 Warning to Saints who aren’t humble and wont take council from Priesthood (those appointed by God -not man- to lead, ie heads of families, key holders, etc)
24 Those that cast off and showed by their actions their hatred of the word of the Lord will be wiped out in a similar way as a dried tumble weed in a fire
25 This verse is VERY clear that it is talking about Gods people and says God is angry with us, BUT God is still reaching out to us, giving us a chance to repent
26-30 The gathering begins anew and Gods people again take the land by force