Isaiah 29:14 says,
Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvellous work among this people, even a marvellous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid.
Apostle LeGrand Richards writes,
Well did Isaiah predict: ‘For the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid.” (Isaiah 29:14.) How could this prediction possibly be more literally fulfilled than in the case of Joseph Smith and the work the Lord established through him? (A Marvelous Work and a Wonder, p. 412).
After citing this passage, he writes,
Since the departure from the true gospel of Christ was to be universal, as the prophets foretold, and since such universal apostasy was confirmed in the statement of Jesus to Joseph Smith, it would follow that a restoration would be necessary. Such a restoration is the message of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (A Marvelous Work and a Wonder, p. 32).
This is taking an awful lot from one verse that was never meant to be taken the way it has been by LDS leaders! In fact, the passage is not one of joy but rather condemnation. As BYU professor Charles R. Harrell correctly points out:
When read in context, the “marvelous work and a wonder” in Isaiah appears to refer to God’s work of vengeance on the ungodly, not his blessing of the righteous. The Lord declares, “Forasmuch as this people . . . have removed their heart far from me . . . I will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men will be hid’ (Isa. 29:13-14). It will be a wonder “for” (i.e., because) the wisdom of the wise shall perish. God’s wonderful and marvelous works are not always positive in nature (see, for example, the “wonderful” plagues described in Deut. 28:59). This may explain why the very next verse reads, “Woe unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the Lord’ (Is. 29:15). (This is My Doctrine, p. 84).
Despite the fact that humanity should have looked forward to the “restoration” of the gospel, in actuality this passage is nothing more than a warning.
For other passages discussing common passages used by Latter-day Saints, click here.