Suggested Pre-Class Readings
You might be wondering why in a class focused on Jesus Christ we are spending one of our class periods studying Isaiah’s testimony of Christ. Read 3 Nephi 23:1-3 and look for a key reason why we are spending a day on Isaiah. Read 1 Nephi 19:23 and Mormon 8:23 for additional endorsements of Isaiah’s words.
Both the New Testament and Book of Mormon interpret Isaiah 53 as a prophecy about Jesus Christ. First read Isaiah 53:7. Next, note how Philip, an early Christian missionary, interprets this verse in Acts 8:26-35 (*the word “Esaias” in Acts 8:28 refers to Isaiah). Finally, read Mosiah 15:6-9 to see how Abinadi interprets this same phrase.
Read Isaiah 53 with the lens provided by Philip and Abinadi. What phrases from this chapter can you connect with Jesus Christ?
Isaiah 36-37 contains a powerful story of temporal redemption. Read these chapters; Isaiah 36 sets up the problem, and Isaiah 37 shows the Lord’s deliverance. When you read Isaiah 37, note what the LORD does (do you remember who the LORD is?). What does Isaiah 36-37 teach you about Jesus Christ? In the video we’ll discuss how we can apply this story of temporal redemption from Jehovah to our lives today.
Questions to focus on during the video
Note: Having a copy of the Isaiah map in front of you (and using it to create your own) can be very helpful. Download a copy of the Isaiah Map here.
Be able to explain the following passages in their historical context (i.e., what they meant in Isaiah’s time): Isaiah 7:1-9, 20, Isaiah 8:9-13, Isaiah 7:14-16, Isaiah 8:1-4.
Understand how Matthew utilizes Isaiah 7 and how knowing the historical background for Isaiah 7 can deepen our understanding of the significance of Matthew’s words.
Identify how Jesus Christ in mortality gave messages similar to those he gave Hezekiah in a time of great distress.
Be able to apply the Trust Matrix to Hezekiah’s situation and your own life.
Be able to explain Isaiah 49:14-16 both in an historical context as Jehovah speaking to Jews in exile and in the context of Jesus Christ speaking to you.
Be able to explain Isaiah 49:21-26 both in an historical context as Jehovah speaking to Jews in exile and in terms of how Jacob teaches they apply to Jesus Christ in the latter days.
What do these messages from Isaiah mean to you personally?
Check Your Understanding Questions
Download Visuals and Printables
Optional post-class readings
Here’s a copy of the “Isaiah Map” that you can use. I recommend using this to create your own copy of the map. Rewriting it will help you really internalize the information on the map.
If you want to review the “Isaiah Map” more carefully, read my article, “The Isaiah Map: An Approach to Teaching Isaiah.” It covers similar material to the video, although in some places it goes more in-depth.
For an unique approach to learning Isaiah, check out Opening Isaiah: A Harmony, by Ann Madsen and Shon Hopkin.
For a deeper dive into Isaiah 7-8, see Jason Comb’s article, “From King Ahaz’s Sign to Christ Jesus.”
Read Mosiah 19-24 with the trust matrix in mind. Keep in mind different groups, like the people of Limhi, Amulon, and Alma. Where are these groups on the trust matrix?
Read 2 Chronicles 20:1-30. This lesser-known story is about Jehoshaphat, one of Hezekiah’s ancestors, and takes place about 100 years before Isaiah 36-37. What phrases do you see in this account that show Jehoshaphat and his people are in the upper-right-hand corner of the trust matrix?
For more information about the trust matrix, see The Founder of our Peace.
Download the PowerPoint used in the video
While traveling together to a meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature, Dr. Matthew Grey sketched out for me a copy of “The Isaiah Map.” This is his pedagogical innovation, which has greatly shaped the way I approach Isaiah, both personally and in the classroom. Insights and resources from Dr. Frank Judd and Dr. Jason Combs were also helpful in the creation of this class.