Did Lehi’s Israelite tribe reach South America 600 BC?

The story I want to present today concerns the people of Israel, or rather the tribe of Lehi, his son Nephi and their families, who, according to the Book of Mormon, set out around 600 B.C. from Jerusalem and reached South America, near present-day Peru. This would be another testimony of people from Euro-Asia reaching America long before Columbus, taking into account the previous migration of Jared’s people.

Book of Mormon, First Nephi 1:4

4 For it came to pass in the commencement of the first year of the reign of Zedekiah, king of Judah, (my father, Lehi, having dwelt at Jerusalem in all his days); and in that same year there came many prophets, prophesying unto the people that they must repent, or the great city Jerusalem must be destroyed.

Jerusalem and Solomon’s Temple were destroyed (for the first time) by Nebuchadnezzar II, king of Babylon.

Book of Mormon, First Nephi 1:6,9

6 And it came to pass as he prayed unto the Lord, there came a pillar of fire and dwelt upon a rock before him; and he saw and heard much; and because of the things which he saw and heard he did quake and tremble exceedingly.
9 And it came to pass that he saw One descending out of the midst of heaven, and he beheld that his luster was above that of the sun at noon-day.

Lehi experienced a vision of an unknown object and a being that was not of this world.

Book of Mormon, First Nephi 2:1-2

1 For behold, it came to pass that the Lord spake unto my father, yea, even in a dream, and said unto him: Blessed art thou Lehi, because of the things which thou hast done; and because thou hast been faithful and declared unto this people the things which I commanded thee, behold, they seek to take away thy life.
2 And it came to pass that the Lord commanded my father, even in a dream, that he should take his family and depart into the wilderness.

The Lord told Lehi to escape from Jerusalem into the desert, and giving messages in dreams to chosen prophets is a practice quite common in ancient writings.

Book of Mormon, First Nephi 16:10

10 And it came to pass that as my father arose in the morning, and went forth to the tent door, to his great astonishment he beheld upon the ground a round ball of curious workmanship; and it was of fine brass. And within the ball were two spindles; and the one pointed the way whither we should go into the wilderness.

It seems that Lehi received a true compass from the Lord.

Book of Mormon, First Nephi 17:4

4 And we did sojourn for the space of many years, yea, even eight years in the wilderness.

According to various accounts and interpretations, the Lehites went from Jerusalem south-east through the Arabian Peninsula, reaching the Gulf of Aden and then the coast of the Indian Ocean.

Book of Mormon, First Nephi 17:8

8 And it came to pass that the Lord spake unto me, saying: Thou shalt construct a ship, after the manner which I shall show thee, that I may carry thy people across these waters.

The Lord told Nephi to build a ship according to his plan to cross the water.

Book of Mormon, First Nephi 18:8,23-24

8 And it came to pass after we had all gone down into the ship, and had taken with us our provisions and things which had been commanded us, we did put forth into the sea and were driven forth before the wind towards the promised land.
23 And it came to pass that after we had sailed for the space of many days we did arrive at the promised land; and we went forth upon the land, and did pitch our tents; and we did call it the promised land.
24 And it came to pass that we did begin to till the earth, and we began to plant seeds; yea, we did put all our seeds into the earth, which we had brought from the land of Jerusalem. And it came to pass that they did grow exceedingly; wherefore, we were blessed in abundance.

It is clear from this passage that the refugees crossed the water and came from Jerusalem.

Book of Mormon, 2 Nephi 5:16

16 And I, Nephi, did build a temple; and I did construct it after the manner of the temple of Solomon save it were not built of so many precious things; for they were not to be found upon the land, wherefore, it could not be built like unto Solomon’s temple.

The thread about the construction of the temple is equally interesting, I will expand on it in another post…

The main topic of this post is the probable ship journey of Lehi’s people from the coast of the Arabian Peninsula through the Indian Ocean, then through the Pacific Ocean, to South America, around 590 B.C.

Based on the above, a few questions arise:
1. Did Lehi see an unknown aircraft landing and an alien getting out of it around 600 B.C.?
2. Considering that the first mention of a compass appeared around 1100 in China, did Lehi receive a compass from a representative of a foreign civilization in 600 BC?
3. The most important question for today is: did representatives of an alien civilization help Lehi build a ship and cross to America?

As usual, many questions that everyone will have to answer for themselves.

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