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A little over a year ago, I noticed while reading the Book of Mormon that the Savior commands us explicitly to study the words of Isaiah. In addition, there are at least two other locations in the Book of Mormon where we are told to study and ponder on the words of Isaiah. In the past, I had always had difficulty understanding the Isaiah portions of the Book of Mormon, but I decided that it was time for me to give it a bit more effort. Isaiah: Prophet, Seer, and Poet is great because it helped me A little over a year ago, I noticed while reading the Book of Mormon that the Savior commands us explicitly to study the words of Isaiah.

Victor L. Ludlow

Isaiah: Prophet, Seer, and Poet is great because it helped me to understand much more of the symbolism in Isaiah than I previously understood. It provided historical context for many of the chapters, as well as information on Isaiah's writing techniques such as chiasmus, which is everywhere in the book and patterns found in his writings. It helped me to see that Isaiah truly was an amazing author - there is so much to be found in his writings, and with a bit of effort, they can be understood on so many different levels!

This book isn't a book I was able to sit down and read for hours on end, but I gave it 5 stars because of how much it helped me understand the writings of Isaiah. Isaiah has now become one of my favorite books of scripture. Commentary from an LDS perspective So first off this commentary is somewhat dated, although it was definitely well researched for its time in my opinion.

I learned plenty of new things about the Book of Isaiah, and the book was good in that it cross referenced in depth other books of scripture and how they are related to the Book of Isaiah.

Timeline—Opening Isaiah

Jan 30, Mary Sasala rated it it was amazing. Dec 27, Leah rated it really liked it Shelves: non-fiction. The chapters from Isaiah that are in the Book of Mormon are covered with relation to what was happening in Isaiah's time pre-Nephi but doesn't include much in the way of interpretation for the latter days. For 2nd Nephi we are left to ourselves to understand how to interpret these Isaiah chapters for our day, since this book focuses on Assyria and the conqu Really good for studying Isaiah in the Old Testament, but I feel it misses somw when it comes to the Book of Mormon Isaiah chapters.

For 2nd Nephi we are left to ourselves to understand how to interpret these Isaiah chapters for our day, since this book focuses on Assyria and the conquest of the Northern Kingdom of Israel. Oct 27, Ligia rated it really liked it. I have always known that we were commanded to read and study the words of Isaiah.

But every time I attempted to, I could never finish it until my institute director suggested this book. It has helped me tremendously. Nov 29, James rated it liked it. I found this book to be insightful, and will keep it in my library as a reference book. There are lots of good bits about words and their meanings. There is also useful information on historical context and culture.

Isaiah: Prophet, Seer, and Poet Victor L. Ludlow (pdf) | Paperity

I do not agree with many of his interpretations but those are easy to separate out. Aug 20, Ashley rated it it was amazing. If you really want to understand the chapters of Isaiah, then read this book. It is filled in information, but it is accessible and manageable to read. It isn't just another text over the average person's head.

The author my professor at BYU did an amazing job of making the text thorough yet understandable. Nov 09, Lee rated it it was amazing. Our oldest son gave me this book many years ago and I turn to it often as I study Isaiah's words. It has allowed me to come to love Isaiah and to love his words and to seek ways to better understand them. I love how it not only gives an understanding of the words but of the times that Isaiah lived in. Sep 07, Brandon Burrup rated it it was amazing Shelves: lds.

I took this class from Brother Ludlow a few years ago and I've never learned more about the Prophet Isaiah before or since. Bro Ludlow's insights and wisdom were a great tool to helping me further my own knowledge and spiritual growth. Dec 12, Vince Wilson rated it really liked it. Amazing, easy to read book for anybody who wants to learn more about Isaiah. He goes chapter by chapter, verse by verse in breaking down the poetry, symbolism, and religious significance of Isaiah. This should definitely be a companion to anyone reading Isaiah.

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I met my husband in Brother Ludlow's class and we were both inspired with a love for the writings of Isaiah. I guess you could say this book was life-changing! Jul 13, Kosmas rated it did not like it. Isaiah I Want to read. Aug 23, Tiffany rated it it was amazing. I read the book and took his class on Isaiah and learned so much. The information carries over to other books also. Sep 06, Cindy rated it really liked it Shelves: non-fiction , lds , religion. I took a class on Isaiah at BYU from the author. This was our textbook. I haven't read it since then, but I remember the insight I got at the time.

Dec 29, Julie rated it it was amazing. Best book on Isaiah. I learned more from this book than most I've read in my life on any subject. Extremely in-depth and accurate. Helped me understand the intense work much more fully. Aug 28, P rated it liked it. For an institute class. In that manner He kept many from being condemned for having a knowledge of principles they were unable to live see Alma —11 ; Jacob A similar charge in teaching was given to Isaiah see Isaiah — For this reason, Isaiah also veiled his teachings in language that preserved his teachings for those who would understand with their heart.

It requires spiritual maturity to understand them.

Isaiah Facts

Individual phrases and verses must be studied carefully in the broad context of the gospel and the prophecies of the latter days. The spirit of prophecy, however, is far more than just a belief that Jesus lives. It includes an understanding that Jesus is the literal Son of God. It includes a correct knowledge of His purpose in coming into mortality and of the significance and nature of His mission. It includes an understanding of the gospel plan for His children, particularly those who spiritually become His sons and daughters through the covenant of baptism.

All of this comes through the power of the Holy Ghost. The prophet Isaiah wrote under the influence of the spirit of prophecy. His writings must be interpreted under the influence of that same spirit. Those who desire to understand Isaiah should learn of Christ and seek the companionship of the Holy Ghost. The Book of Mormon teaches the way to obtain the spirit of prophecy. The Lord will give knowledge to those who prepare themselves and sincerely seek it. This truth, of course, also applies to gaining an understanding of the writings of Isaiah.

This manner of prophesying includes several elements. The Law of Moses. The house of Israel in Old Testament times lived under the law of Moses, which is found in the first five books of the Old Testament. The law, in turn, was designed to teach them of Christ, to keep them in remembrance of Him, and bring them to Him see Mosiah ; ; ; Alma —16 ; The law of Moses was the root from which the prophesying of the Jews sprang. To understand the manner of their prophesying, one must understand their law.


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Isaiah began his book with a quotation from the song of Moses, which is contained in the law compare Isaiah with Deuteronomy This song was immediately recognizable to the Hebrew people, for it was very familiar to them. A word or phrase from the law, which was thoroughly known by most Hebrews, brought to their minds much more than was on the written page. Isaiah was able to communicate very effectively with those who knew the law, for he did not need to explain in detail what he meant by each word or phrase.

This phenomenon should not seem strange to the Latter-day Saints. They, too, experience it. Such was the case with Isaiah and his Hebrew audience. Imagery and figurative language. Isaiah used in his writing images and figures of speech that were well understood by the Hebrew people. For those with other backgrounds, understanding the Hebrew manner of writing is often difficult.

Isaiah did not intend for every word he used to be interpreted in its most literal sense. He made constant use of metaphors, similes, analogies, parables, types, and shadows. The following are some examples:. Isaiah used the names Sodom and Gomorrah to tell Judah even more forcefully that they were very wicked and were close to being destroyed, just as Sodom and Gomorrah had been. Keil and F. The wise, divinely inspired course adopted by the husbandman in the treatment of the field and fruit, is a type of the wise course adopted by the divine Teacher Himself in the treatment of His nation.

The punishments and chastisements of Jehovah are the ploughshare and harrow, with which He forcibly breaks up, turns over, and furrows this field. But this does not last for ever. When the field has been thus loosened, smoothed, and rendered fertile once more, the painful process of ploughing is followed by a beneficent sowing and planting in a multi-form and wisely ordered fulness of grace.

He threshes it; but He does not thresh it only; He also knocks; and when He threshes, He does not continue threshing for ever, i. This is the solemn lesson and affectionate consolation hidden behind the veil of the parable. Such use of imagery adds power, beauty, and life to the message of the writer. In Isaiah —20 the prophet poetically described the idolatry of Israel. In describing how some wood from trees was made into gods to be worshiped, while other wood from the same source was used to serve domestic purposes, Isaiah created a mental image which powerfully illustrated the foolishness of worshiping idols.

This manner of speaking was much more convincing than if he had just told the people not to worship idols. Dualism and esoteric terms. That is, they can apply to more than one situation or may be fulfilled at more than one time. He also at times combined dualistic phrases with terms that were intended for or understood by only a certain group. Such esoteric language brings to mind religious concepts that only those who have the proper religious background readily understand without further explanation.

The term Zion v. By using such terms as these, Isaiah conveys profound spiritual meaning to those who understand the special significance of his language. In the thirteenth and fourteenth chapters, Isaiah wrote of the gathering of Israel and their eventual triumph over Babylon. This figure is an excellent example of dualism. Babylon is used to refer both to the nation of Babylon as it existed at the time of Isaiah and also to the wickedness of the world and the dominions of Satan in the world, which the nation of Babylon epitomized.

In his writings about Babylon in these chapters, Isaiah used concepts that applied to the future fall of Babylon as a nation and as the symbol of the world , to the triumph of Israel, and to the pre-mortal overthrow of Lucifer and his hosts see Isaiah — This richness of language and meaning seems to be what Nephi meant when he spoke of the manner of prophesying among the Jews.


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  • There is frequent reference to the law of Moses and extensive use of imagery, figurative language, and phrases that have dualistic and esoteric meanings.