We’ve just begun our journey of discovery of Biblical Africa and the descendants of Africa. But before we continue forward, let’s recap where we’ve been so far, shall we? 

  1. We understand that we were created in the likeness of God! When God made us, He essentially drew us out of Himself so that our very essence would be just like Him. (See Reflect God,  Identity in Christ, In The Image of God)
  2. We understand that the concept of race as we know it today is not a Biblical concept. There is only one race (the human race) that reflects the many colors and the glory of God! (See Reflect God, This Black Girl, A Race Second to None)
  3. We understand that the genealogical and biological Jewish nation is no longer God’s representative (Romans 9:1-8). Jesus did not die for, nor is He returning for a nation, a kingdom, a tribe, a particular religion, or a denomination; Christ is returning for YOU (Romans 2:6-8, Hebrews 9:28). (See Reflect God, This Black Girl, The Greatest Love Story Ever Told)

The above points speak to who we are as humanity. These points are true for the descendants of Africa and Europe, Asia, The Americas, Australia and even those in the furthest hemisphere of Antarctica. But as I shared in the LIFE Lesson, A Race Second to None (See LIFE Lesson, A Race Second to None, This Black Girl, Reflect God), while we are one race, we do have our differences with respect to geographic, language, ethnicity, culture and experiences. So we will begin our study in ancient Biblical Africa, the geographical cradle of our ancestors. 


Envoys will come out of Egypt; Ethiopia will quickly stretch out her hands to God.

Lessons Learned

To understand “ancient Africa,” you must first understand that the name or term Africa didn’t exist in Biblical times. The name Africa or “land of Afri” meaning land of dust and sun, is actually of Latin origin and was imposed on the continent by European explorers (Felder, 1993).  “Cush” or “Ethiopia” were often used to refer to all of “Africa,” to all of “Africa” except Egypt, or to ancient Nubia, which stretched from modern Aswan in the north to Khartoum in the south (From <>). 

Additionally, the boundaries of ancient kingdoms and nations do not follow our modern-day country borders (From <>). For example, Havilah (Arabia), Ethiopia, Assyria (Mesopotamia), Persia, and Syria were connected. The Nile flowed from southern Ethiopia and emptied into the Great Sea (Mediterranean), and people migrated seamlessly back and forth since no body of water separated these areas.  

Furthermore, in ancient Biblical times, what is known today as Africa and the nearer Middle East were connected as one landmass that encompassed Cush/Ethiopia, Egypt, and Sudan. These regions were an extension of the “African” mainland before it was artificially divided in 1869 by the creation of the Suez Canal. The completion of the Suez Canal 

and the introduction of the new name, the Middle East, by World War II correspondents, introduced a division of Africa into the current day continent minus the Middle East and Egypt. This separation affected the land and geographical boundaries, and it impacted the cultural and social fabric of Africa and a loss of the ancient African identity (Felder, 1993 and ).

Africa had a geographical role in Biblical history, and it also played a symbolic role throughout the Bible. Africa symbolized:

  • Oppression and Slavery: Abraham’s great-grandson Joseph was sold by his brothers into slavery, and he was a slave in Egypt (Genesis 37:28). The Children of Israel suffered under the brutal oppression of the Pharoah of Egypt (Exodus 1:1–15). 
  •  Judgement and Punishment: Israel often served as the stage against which judgment upon varying African nations was proclaimed. In Exodus 7:1-5, God told Moses that because of Egypt’s enslavement and brutality towards the Israelites, He would bring great judgments upon the Egyptians so that they would know that God was Lord. Additionally, Egypt represents those nations/persons who are “anti-God,” as seen in Daniel 11:40. Here Egypt represents the King of the South, which is prophesied to be destroyed. Other examples include God’s judgment against Cush, as seen in Ezekiel’s prophecies, which mention how Cush’s wealth and power would be taken away (Ezekiel 30:4–59). Furthermore, Cush is usually mentioned alongside the judgments of Egypt as seen in the following passages: Genesis 10:6, Isaiah 45:14; Ezekiel 30:4-9; Daniel 11:43; Nahum 3:8-10; Habakkuk 3:7; Zephaniah 2:12 and in the following passages of Jeremiah: 43:11, 13, 27, 44; 14:12; 46:2, 14. From <>. 
  • Safety and Refuge: Abraham went to Egypt during a famine to prevent starvation (Genesis 12). Joseph and Jacob also were in Egypt to preserve their family (Genesis 43:1). Hadad, the Edomite prince, went to Egypt for safety and eventually married the Pharaoh’s daughter (1 Kings 11:18–22). Jeroboam rebelled against his father, fleeing to Egypt (I Kings 12). When the prophet Uriah prophesied the destruction of Jerusalem, and King Jehoiakim sought to put him to death, he fled to Egypt (Jeremiah 26:21). Egypt served as a refuge one final time in the Bible when Mary and Joseph fled with baby Jesus fled from Bethlehem to Egypt (Matthew 2:13-14). 
  • Redemption and Deliverance:  Israel’s mistreatment by the Egyptians provided the background and impetus for their redemption and deliverance. When the Children of Israel could no longer endure their suffering as slaves in Egypt, God raised up Moses and Aaron to confront Pharaoh and deliver Israel out of bondage and into the Promised Land (Exodus 3—6:13). Israel’s deliverance from the mighty armies of the Cushites is evidenced as well. Isaiah describes Cush as a “powerful and oppressive nation” (Isaiah 18:1–2, NASB). Yet God delivers the Israelites as they are faithful to Him. For example, while Sennacherib, king of Assyria, was seeking to surround and capture Jerusalem, he felt threatened by Tirhakah, king of Cush, who had been marching to meet the Assyrians in battle (2 Kings 19:9–10Isaiah 37:9). Because of Sennacherib’s fear of the Cushites, He tried to discourage the Israelites. Although Assyria was a powerful foe, because King Hezekiah prayed to God, God delivered the Israelites and defeated the Assyrians.

Another example is seen when Judah’s King Asa described Zerah the Cushite, whom He was preparing to fight as having  “an army of thousands upon thousands and three hundred chariots” (2 Chronicles 14:9). But when Asa entrusted the battle to the Lord, the Cushites were defeated (2 Chronicles 14:10–14). The Bible also speaks to the redemption of those Cushites/Ethiopians who turn from their wicked ways and serve God (Psalms 68:31, 87:4).

Lessons Lived

Finding maps of ancient “Africa” as well as this rich Biblical history of “Africa” was a challenge, to say the least. But as you can see from the information and the map above, all that land and all those nations was AFRICA! Africa wasn’t just a “blip” in ancient Biblical history. Africa wasn’t an after-thought or a Biblical oversight. African nations played a pivotal role in Biblical history – in the good, the bad, and the ugly. 

Engaging in this two-year study not only challenged my mind, but it did a number on me emotionally and eventually spiritually. I had so many questions like, “Why don’t I know this stuff?” “Why doesn’t everybody know this stuff?” “Who changed the narrative and WHY?” And when I begin digging for answers to the “why” of Africa’s absence of or relevance to the Bible, what I learned from the various theological, philosophical, debatable, inflammable or convoluted answers provided, is that the “de-Africanization” of the Bible all boils down to greed and fear. 

Beginning with Constantine, the 4th century Roman emperor who institutionalized Christianity in the Roman Empire, and then more intentionally during “Enlightenment” between the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, Europe sought to recast the Bible in a more Eurocentric light to justify slavery and colonization. And this “whitewashing” of the Bible not only provided Europeans and White Americans a justification of their greed at the expense of Africans, but it also led to the minimization or erasure of the presence of Africa and Africans and their contributions in Biblical history (Felder, 1993). 

I also believe that the continued “whitewashing” of the Bible persists in response to fear, a fear that I believe is misplaced. See, in our sinful, worldly ways of thinking, I’m guessing that those seeking to continue the oppression of Africans and the descendants of Africa must reason that if they were in our shoes, given a chance, they’d retaliate. They would seek to heap upon the “oppressor” evil and harm tenfold that which had been heaped upon them. They’d seek to take away everything that had been ill-earned and would seek a reversal of power. That fear of losing what one has,  power, riches, privilege,  can lead one to continually suppress the truth and oppress any and everyone who is perceived as a threat. 

And truth be told, for a minute, I was in that same space. In that space of wanting revenge, retaliation and restitution, I was very much tangled up in my feelings of the unfairness and the horror of it all. But God worked with me. He comforted and calmed me and gave me a new perspective and a new sense of purpose. And two years later, He’s shown me that this newfound truth and this enlightenment isn’t about revenge, retaliation or restitution. It’s about not simply knowing the truth about Africa, but it’s about living as “symbolic Africa.” As I prayerfully studied and allowed the Holy Spirit to lead me, I saw symbolic “Africa” Biblical as a representation of the choice that each of us has today, life or death (Deuteronomy 30:19). The “Africa” representing death served as an oppressor, like slavery, sin, idolatry and all things anti-God. However, the “Africa” symbolic of life was the “Africa” that served as a refuge, a place of safety, redemption and deliverance. 

So what if we chose life? Imagine how the truth about the prominence of African nations and African people in the Bible could serve our African nations and communities around the globe. Imagine the life that could be breathed into our nations, tribes, communities, and people. Perhaps, we’d walk with our heads held a little higher and our chests stuck out a little further. We’d have a glint and a gleam in our eyes. We’d let our natural, God-given talents burst forth. We’d create and innovate as we did in the days of old. We’d no longer be slaves to sin but would live as ones who have been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb (John 1:29; I Peter 1:18-19). We’d once again provide safety and refuge to those who are hurting or lost (Colossians 3:13). We’d be that message of redemption and deliverance to a dying world (2 Corinthians 5:20). We would be Christ’s true worshippers (John 4:23), repairers of the breach and restorers of the streets (Isaiah 58:12-13). This is what “Africa” now means to me. And it is my goal to not only spread the truth of the prominent role of Africa and Africans throughout the Bible but to also live “Africa” by providing a refuge for the hurting and by spreading God’s message of redemption and deliverance. Won’t you join me? Live “Africa” Live!

Have I mentioned how exciting this study has been for me? And if my enthusiasm could fuel the research and writing process, this entire study would be done! However, research and writing take time. I hope that I’ve laid a good foundation, and I encourage you to stay tuned for specific stories regarding the African dynasties and the nations. We’ll meet prophets, priests, warriors, archers, tentmakers, farmers, kings and queens. We’ll discover varying plots and twists and explore the themes of love, betrayal, deceit, faithfulness, and courage, with each story pointing to the grand Biblical story of salvation. 

Stay tuned for the LIFE Study – My Black LIFE, A Rich and Royal Heritage.


  1. How does Psalm 68:31 speak to you?
  2. What is your understanding of geographical Africa in ancient Biblical times? How does that differ from what you know of Africa today?
  3. What is your understanding of the “whitewashing” of the Bible? How has this impacted your beliefs, feelings, or how you live? 
  4. How might you “let go” of any negative feelings or fallout due to the “whitewashing” of the Bible and its implications in your life? 
  5. What is your understanding of symbolic Africa in the Bible?  
  6. How might you live as life-giving symbolic “Africa?”
  7. What are your personal LIFE Lessons?
    1. Liberation: What new insights gained have freed you from past thoughts or practices? 
    2. Inspiration: In what ways have you been spiritually, emotionally or mentally motivated to live for Christ?
    3. Fortification: What additional scriptural texts, passages or stories can reinforce and strengthen you against the attacks of the enemy?
    4. Edification: How might you share your story to edify others and bring glory to God?


As you process, digest, and apply what’s been shared, here are a few songs from “My Black Life” Playlist. Listen and let the music infiltrate your soul. Read the lyrics and let the words encourage you. And I pray that you’ll be blessed as I was. 


Dear Heavenly Father, I gotta admit that while I understand the importance of surrendering everything to You – my anger, my need for revenge, my hurt, my pain –  it’s still something I struggle with daily. But I know that with You all things are possible (Matthew 19:26), so please continue to break me, mold me, and create in me a clean heart. Help me to forgive so that I can move forward in victory. I’m beginning to understand what and who “Africa” was in Your Divine plan. And I’m beginning to understand who I am and why I’m here. Now help me be the life-giving symbolic “Africa,” sharing Your message of love, hope, redemption and deliverance. Help me be a refuge for those who are hurting, who have been displaced, and who are lost. Help me use my God-given gifts and talents to restore and repair our communities and our people. I ask all these things in the most precious and worthy name of Jesus, Amen.


See Video Series – AfricaArise