It is fashionable today to minimize the accomplishments of Christopher Columbus and dethrone him as the hero of the discovery of the Americas. All manner of evil is attributed to him, and his critics dredge up allsorts of rumors and innuendos to blacken his name. He is even seen as the responsible party for the later genocide and enslavement of the Indians. Yet the Lord seemed to favor him and blessed him with success in his endeavors. In fact, God probably used him as an instrument in accomplishing His purposes on this chosen land, and his discoveries fulfilled prophecies relating to the Indian descendants of Father Lehi.
The prophet Nephi was shown a vision of Columbus' future voyages of discovery. He prophesied “I looked and beheld a man among the Gentiles, who was separated from the seed of my brethren by the many waters; and I beheld the Spirit of God, that it came down and wrought upon the man; and he went forth upon the many waters, even unto the seed of my brethren, who were in the promised land (1 Ne. 13:12).”
This being true, we can assume that Columbus, although a mortal with faults common to man, was chosen and accepted of God. In fact, from his record we read that he felt that he was inspired in his quest, and he may have even received a direct revelation from the Lord. Many biographers ignore this incident, but in my opinion it was more than a simple random dream, and was an answer to his fervent prayers.
From a letter that he penned to the sovereigns of Spain on July 7, 1503 he tells of this incident, an incident that occurred as he was severely ill and separated from the other members of his expedition.