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Why would Joseph Smith mention an oasis in the Arabian peninsula that was believed to be nothing but desert?

In 1 Nephi 17:4-5 Lehi and his family reach a place they name Bountiful:

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

And we did come to the land which we called Bountiful, because of its much fruit and also wild honey; and all these things were prepared of the Lord that we might not perish. And we beheld the sea, which we called Irreantum, which, being interpreted, is many waters.

Following Lehi’s trail beginning in Jerusalem and ending east of Nahom, Joseph Smith would have been taking quite a risk in saying there is a land with fruit and honey by the sea, especially if Arabia was believed to just be a desert. However two locations are actually perfect candidates for the description in the Book of Mormon: Khor Kharfot and Khor Rori. 

Why would Joseph Smith have taken such a chance like this? Why would he go against the common understanding of Arabia at the time? 


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