5 Reasons to Love the book of Isaiah
Songs of Solomon 3:1 - Isaiah 3:2
There is something you should probably know about me at this point in the juncture...
I love Isaiah.
I really, really do. It's my most favorite book of the entire Standard Works. There are just not words enough to describe my great love of this prophet, his words, or his testimony.
More than anything, by this time two weeks from now, I hope you will develop a love for the book of Isaiah. My greatest wish is that somehow, within the confines of this simple blog, I can express the things I love the most.
...and that in some small way I will find a way to share the sincerity of the great respect I have for Isaiah...
...and that those thoughts will somehow make it from the innermost place in my heart...
...and that they will find a place in yours.
Perhaps you grew up in the same generation that I did. It's the one where everyone told you to skip the Isaiah chapters when you read the Book of Mormon. When you wondered why, those same people told you that you wouldn't be able to understand them.
Perhaps you believed them.
If that has been your experience, then I am going to ask you to set that all aside.
Because lots of times people think they don't like peas, or avocados, or creme brulee. And then they try the thing they thought they hated. Really try it, and find out, that after all this time, they actually like those things. A lot.
There is thanksgiving that comes in those moments. Gratitude for the simple fact that you won't go through the rest of your life missing out on something you didn't know you were going to love so much.
So, in preparation for the beginning of Isaiah I am going to share with you five reasons why I love Isaiah. And I am going to include them on a bookmark, in case you want to keep it with you while you read for the next two weeks.
1. "...that I might more fully persuade them to believe in the Lord their Redeemer I did read unto them that which was written by the prophet Isaiah..." (1 Nephi 19:23) One of the things I love most about Isaiah is his testimony of the Lord. He has a beautiful way of expressing his belief in the Savior. It is poetic, and visual, and he teaches us characteristics of the Lord in a way that is different from any other book of scripture. As you read Isaiah this time watch for verses that testify of Christ. Mark them. Learn from them.
2. "...Surely he spake as touching all things. All things that he spake have been and shall be, even according to the words which he spake." (3 Nephi 23:1-3) I love that Isaiah spake as touching all things...and it is true. Within these pages you will find his testimony on many gospel principles including tithing, fast offerings, the atonement, the church in the Latter Days, the Stakes of Zion, and the temple, among others. This time when you read Isaiah watch for verses that speak counsel, and also verses that speak warning. What can you learn from them?
3. "In the days that the prophecies of Isaiah shall be fulfilled men shall know of a surety, at the times when they shall come to pass." (2 Nephi 25:7) The book of Isaiah contains many prophecies, some of which have already come to pass, and others which are still before us. As you read Isaiah, watch for prophecies...both those that have been fulfilled, and those that will be.
4. "They will be of great worth unto them in the last days; for in that day shall they understand them; wherefore, for their good have I written them." (2 Nephi 25:8) Nephi has given us a great promise ––we live in the last days, which means we are the people who will understand the words of Isaiah. What an incredible gift...to be able to understand. This time as you read Isaiah, pray for the Spirit to be with you, then have faith in the promise given by Nephi...you will understand them.
5. "Search these things diligently; for great are the words of Isaiah." (3 Nephi 23:1) The words of Isaiah are great. This is something I believe with all my heart. Take your time. Read slow. Soak it in. Watch for the imagery. Get caught up in the poetry. As you turn each page of this sacred text remind yourself of that truth...great are the words of Isaiah. Believe it, and it will be so.
As you can see, the five reasons I have chosen are simple, and they are all found outlined in the Book of Mormon. Here is a quick review...
I love the testimony of Christ contained within the pages. I love the opportunity we have to learn more about the commandments and to follow counsel. I love learning about the prophecies concerning the latter days. I love the promise given to those who live in our day concerning the words of Isaiah, that we will be able to understand those words. And, last, I love the reminder from Nephi that "great are the words of Isaiah."
Did I mention how much I love the book of Isaiah?
Oh, I can hardly wait to begin...