The Nephites and Lamanites » Sailing to America

[this teaching has not yet been illustrated]


After a few days in Bountiful, Jesus told Nephi to climb a tall mountain. There Jesus told Nephi to build a ship to take them to the promised land. Jesus said he would show Nephi the design of the ship and how to build it.


Jesus showed Nephi where to find ore to smelt into metal tools, and he made a bellows out of animal skins. He struck stones together to build a fire. This was the first fire they had since they left Jerusalem for the wilderness. Jesus had not allowed them to have fire during the journey. They had eaten only raw meat that Jesus made sweet.

1 Nephi 17:9-12


When Laman and Lemuel saw that Nephi was building a ship, they made fun of him, and did not believe that Jesus had instructed him. They refused to help him, and complained that their wives had to bear their children in the wilderness, and said that they could have spent the past eight years enjoying their possessions in their homeland and been happy. In their anger, they wanted to throw Nephi in the depths of the sea and go back to Jerusalem.

1 Nephi 17:17-22, 48


But when they tried to seize Nephi, he commanded them not to touch him because he was full of the power of God. This made his brothers afraid for many days. Then Jesus told Nephi to stretch forth his hand toward his brothers, and he would shock them so that they knew that Jesus was their Lord and God. So Nephi stretched his hand toward his brothers and Jesus shocked them.


This convinced Laman and Lemuel that Jesus was with Nephi, and they bowed down before him. From that point on they helped Nephi build the ship from timbers of fine workmanship. Every so often, Jesus would tell Nephi how to work the timbers of the ship.

1 Nephi 17:55
1 Nephi 18:1-2


When the ship was finished, they saw that it was a good ship of extremely fine workmanship. They prepared for their journey by gathering a lot of fruit and meats, seeds, and an abundance of honey. Then they all boarded the ship with their wives and children.

1 Nephi 18:4-6


The winds blew their ship toward the promised land. After many days at sea, Nephi's brothers, Ishmael's sons, and their wives began to dance and sing and make merry, speaking with extreme rudeness. Worried that Jesus would be angry with them and strike them because of their wickedness, Nephi spoke to his brothers very sternly.

1 Nephi 18:8-10


This angered Laman and Lemuel, and said they would not let their younger brother rule over them. They tied Nephi up such that he could not move. The Liahona ceased to function, and they did not know which way to steer the ship. Then a terrible tempest of a storm arose, blowing the ship backward for three days. The brothers were frightened for their lives, but they would not untie Nephi.

1 Nephi 18:10-13


Lehi and Sariah became so sick they almost died. In tears, Nephi's wife and children begged Laman and Lemuel to untie Nephi, but they refused. On the fourth day the storm got even worse and the ship was about to sink. Only then did Laman and Lemuel realize that God's judgment was upon them and that they would die unless they repented of their wickedness.


After they repented and untied Nephi, he prayed and the sea became calm. Nephi picked up the Liahona and it began to work again, guiding the ship toward the promised land.

1 Nephi 18:21-22


Many more days passed before they finally reached the promised land, landing in South America in 590 BC. They went ashore, set up their tents, and called it the promised land.



Also from the creator of The Brick Book of Mormon:

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