Ken Krogue: So, there’s a major, major question in Isaiah that we’re…all our rookies are in… you guys are living in this, but you’ve dedicated your life’s work to this, and the main question that keeps coming up, is Isaiah about his day or our day. Is it history, or…those gold plates were pretty expensive real estate.
Shon Hopkin: Yeah.
Ken Krogue: Why in the world did Nephi, Jacob, the Savior, Mormon, Moroni put in so much Isaiah? What are your thoughts on that? Is it historical? Is it us? Is it both?
Shon Hopkin: Yeah, so…
Ken Krogue: Is that a fair question?
Shon Hopkin: Yeah, I think it’s a very fair question. It’s sort of what we’ve been discussing, and that is Nephi recognizes both that Isiah, because he was speaking to the house of Israel, will have power in multiple situations, but there are times when Isaiah clearly isn’t’ talking about his day.
Ken Krogue: Interesting.
Shon Hopkin: He is jumping forward to talk about the end times as other Christians might call them.
Ken Krogue: Would they have put it in if it was merely historical, do you think?
Shon Hopkin: Well, you do see…so I think you would be inclined to say no, but I might disagree with that a little bit…
Ken Krogue: I want to hear it.
Shon Hopkin: So, for example, the Book of Mormon starts with Lehi, the heavens are opened, and God is seated on a throne surrounded by concourses of angels. This is what starts the Book of Mormon. Well then, here’s Isaiah’s very historical experience where he has this vision of God surrounded by angels, God’s seated on his throne, and so I do think Nephi is understanding his situation, and he is saying, and how does our dispensation open. It opens with the veil parting and Joseph Smith sees God, and so some of it absolutely points directly to our day, but a lot of it, it really is that Isaiah provides a prophetic foundation for us to understand what’s going on in our day. The New Testament opens the same way. Gabriel comes, he stands right at the veil, which has angels stitched on it, and he says, God’s going to be with you, God’s going to descend now, here’s how you enter into the presence of God, and then Jesus comes down, an angel brought a message from God right there at the veil, just like in Isaiah’s vision. And so, I don’t know if they would have or not. I do think a lot of it is historical, but historical in a way that says, look, now you can understand what God is doing with you, because look at what he did with his prophet Isaiah, and it provides some context for what’s going on today. Because this is what God does. This is how he acts with the house of Israel.
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