First, read the message I posted on the Accordance Support forum early Sunday morning:
For today (March 26) Southern Baptist Sunday School literature focused on Isa 17-18. In ch. 18, there were references to the land of Cush (Ethiopia in some translations). I usually put together a handout for the class that I teach, and I had hoped to include a map that showed where the land of Cush was. I had even greater hopes of finding a map that demonstrated that Cush was actually greater in size than merely modern-day Ethiopia.
So I fired up the Accordance Bible Atlas, and I was disappointed to see no entry for the land of Cush. I tried searching for Ethiopia, but no luck there either. I looked in other modules that I have such as the Anchor Bible Dictionary and the IVP New Bible Atlas, but no luck. I even looked in the Photoguide thinking maybe I could find photographs from the region. But nothing.
From there, I fired up VirtualPC where I keep a few Windows Bible programs from my pre-Mac days (I switched in 1998). The version of Logos Bible Atlas had nothing, and neither did the map module in Wordsearch.
Even a Google image search yielded nothing (except for some really weird stuff).
All of these programs are in equal standing it seems. There are also no references to Cush in the maps in the back of my Bible! I've decided this morning just to tell my class to think "south of Egypt, going down the Nile."
Here's my question... I admit that I don't have the newest version of the Accordance Bible Atlas. Just out of curiosity, is Cush included in the new Atlas? Admittedly, Cush would be the very southwestern edge of the biblical world, but I would think that it's mentioned enough in the Bible to warrant inclusion in a biblical atlas.
Today, David Lang of Accordance responded to my message confirming that Cush was not included in the newer version of the Atlas either, but should probably be added in a future release. I'm not surprised at this point. My search has not been exhaustive, but I can't find one decent depiction of Cush anywhere. I don't have a map of Cush in any Bible or any reference book (that I know of).
What exactly was the extent of Cush? Grogan (EBC) notes the following:
[Cush] designates a much larger area than present-day Ethiopia--an area including the Sudan and Somalia. This somewhat mysterious area, situated at one of the limits of the normal biblical world, had come right into the world in Isaiah's day. It was normally in Egypt's area of influence and, usually, of control; but for a period during the eighth century, Egypt was ruled by an Ethiopian dynasty.
If you know of a good cartographical depiction of ancient Cush, please share.
Incidentally, one person commented in the Accordance forums that my description "south of Egypt, going down the Nile was incorrect." The Nile oddly flows northward, so the direction to Cush should be "south of Egypt, going UP the Nile!"