TOM - Nephi quotes Isaiah extensively in his writings. Yes, Isaiah's writings would have been found on the brass plates. But, weren't the following references to Isaiah written after they took the plates from Laban in Jerusalem? How could Nephi have quoted these things if they wouldn't have even been on the brass plates?
1 Nephi 20 - Isaiah 48
1 Nephi 21 - Isaiah 49
2 Nephi 7 - Isaiah 50
2 Nephi 8 - Isaiah 51
Mosiah 12 - Isaiah 52
Mosiah 14 - Isaiah 53
In my mind there should be a very easy and logical explanation for this...I just can't find/think/come up with one. Hoping you can!
JOEL - With regards to the book of Isaiah, it depends on who you believe really knows about the time and origin of his writings. A wide variety of theories regarding the date and authorship of Isaiah now exist, with many scholars disagreeing vigorously among themselves. Traditionally, the entire book of Isaiah has been ascribed to the prophet living in the kingdom of Judah between 740 and 690 B.C., which of course would be long before his writings showed up in the brass plates; so no problem there.
There have been some that say that the latter section of Isaiah (chs. 40-66), some of which as you say are found on the brass plates, was not the work of Isaiah, but of some other man or men living a century and a half later during the Babylonian captivity.
Those later chapters of Isaiah do seem to address, to a degree, historical circumstances different from those of Isaiah's day. However, as seers, prophets can reveal the truth and knowledge of things as they were, are, and will be. (D&C 93:24.) If we believe that he really was a prophet, as such he could see and understand the circumstances of his countrymen a century and a half after his death, and through the inspiration of heaven he wrote in their behalf, as he also did for his contemporaries. He also saw our own latter-day setting, and his powerful witness and prophesies that he left in his record speaks to our generation as well (See http://salgoud.files.wordpress.com/2010/09/gospel-doctrine-lesson-ot-36-101010.pdf).
Jesus Christ named him as the author and quoted him specifically in the New Testament and the Book of Mormon. (Matt. 13:14-15; 15:8-9; Luke 4:18-19; 3 Ne. 16: 20.)
The earliest Bible manuscripts, such as the Dead Sea Scrolls, have all recorded Isaiah as one book.
Also, because we know that the Bible has undergone multiple translations and therefore subject to corruption over time (See A of F #8, 1 Nep 13: 28-29), we have to assume that what we have in the Book of Mormon (only translated once) is a more true representation of what was written by Isaiah and when it was written
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