Isaiah: Author, Author??

At this point, we would like to welcome the critics, the experts, and the scholars to the discussion. Who wrote Isaiah? Well, according to some of these folks there were at least two different writers. The critics divide Isaiah into two sections. One section is Isaiah chapter one through thirty nine, Proto Isaiah. The second section is Isaiah chapters forty through sixty-six, Deutero Isaiah. Proto and Deutero are Greek for “first” and “second”. Their argument is there are differences in style, vocabulary, and subject matter. The fundamental problem with the critic is the prophecy of Isaiah 45:1-8.

Isaiah 45:1-8 So says Jehovah to His anointed, to Cyrus, whom I have seized by his right hand, to subdue nations before him. Yea, I will open the loins of kings, to open the two leaved doors before him, and the gates shall not be shut. I will go before you and make hills level; I will tear apart the bronze doors, and cut the iron bars in two.  And I will give you the treasures of darkness, even treasures in secret places,  that you may know that I am Jehovah, who calls you by your name, the God of Israel. For My servant Jacob’s sake, and for Israel My elect, I entitle you. I name you, but you do not know Me. I am Jehovah, and there is none else; there is no God except Me. I will clothe you, though you do not know Me, that they may know from the rising of the sun, and to its going down, that there is none besides Me; I am Jehovah, and there is none else; forming light, and creating darkness; making peace, and creating evil. I, Jehovah, do all these things. Drop down from above, O heavens; and let the clouds pour down righteousness. Let the earth open and let salvation bear fruit; and let righteousness spring up together. I, Jehovah have created it.

Now the problem for the critic is this prophecy was written approximately 150 years before the birth of Cyrus. Cyrus was the Persian King who overthrew Babylon and freed the Jewish people from exile. His decree (see Ezra 1:1-4, 2 Chronicles 36:22-23) in 539 BC allowed the return of the Jews to rebuild Jerusalem and the temple. The critic response is that Deutero Isaiah had to be written in the fifth century BC because there is no way that prophecy could be that specific and be that accurate. Therefore, this prophecy was written after the history of Cyrus. The critic just cannot fathom and believe in the accuracy of prophecy.

I have news for the critic, there is much more prophecy written about a coming Tribulation and a coming time of judgment. Will that really happen? Is God really going to judge the Earth? Can that be true?

In regards to the issue of style, the critic argument is that because there are differences in style, there must be two authors. I am sure these critics have different styles of writing depending on who they are writing to. The critic’s professional writing is likely different when they compose an e-mail or a letter. Using their logic, their must be multiple people writing in their name. I know personally that how I write a professional, medical report is different than how I write an e-mail is different than I how I write this blog.

The critic is correct, the subject matter is different. Chapter one through forty is about the condemnation of Israel. Chapters forty one through sixty-six are about the salvation of Israel. I am sure that Isaiah was capable of writing on different subject matters. That hardly disqualifies him from being the single author. Using this line of thinking, the critic should be disqualified from discussing multiple topics because they can’t possibly be that well versed on multiple topics.

Just for giggles, let’s give the critic their argument for two authors. The problem they have next is the prophecies concerning Jesus. By the way, these prophecies are in both “Proto” and “Deutero” Isaiah. There is the prophecy of the virgin conception of Jesus in Isaiah 7:14. Maybe Isaiah was written after Jesus was born. That would explain being born of a virgin (sarcasm for those of you who do not know me)? Christ’s ministry is discussed in Isaiah 11 and Isaiah 61. Isaiah 53 discusses death for sins, the gospel message. Did the authors of Proto and Deutero Isaiah conspire (more sarcasm)??? Just because the critic thinks there are two authors, it does not disprove the prophecies. The prophecies still happened before and after “Proto” and “Deutero” as it was written.

Archaeological and historical evidence are in support of one author. The Dead Sea Scrolls are dated to first or second BC. The scrolls were found in 1947. In the scrolls, there is no interruption in the text from chapters thirty-nine to forty. The Septuagint (the Greek translation of the Old Testament) was written from 300-200 BC. It confirms a single book and a single author.

If that is not enough, Jesus Himself quoted Isaiah on both sides of the critic’s divide. In John 12:38, Jesus quotes Isaiah 53:1. In John 12:40, Jesus quotes    Isaiah 6:10. Jesus credits a singular prophet, Isaiah.

The bottom line is this. Critics don’t let facts, history, archaeological evidence, or Heaven forbid, Jesus Himself, get in the way of their personal agenda.

Don’t take my word or any other critic’s word; look it up yourself and verify, confirm. Acts 17:11, be a Berean.

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