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Bible Dictionaries

Fausset's Bible Dictionary


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Not the earth worm (Lumbricus terrestris ). Isaiah 51:8; "the moth ('ash ) shall eat them up like a garment, and the worm (sas ) shall eat them like wool." The sas is a species of (See MOTH . Rimmah synonymous with toleah; applied to the worm bred in the manna when kept more than a day (Exodus 16:26), tolaim , answering to rimmah (Exodus 16:24); so in Job 25:6; maggots and larvae of insects which feed on putrefying matter (Job 21:26; Job 24:20; Job 7:5; Job 17:4); maggots were bred in Job's sores produced by elephantiasis. "Herod was eaten of worms" (Acts 12:23). Josephus tells the same of Herod the Great (Acts 19:8), and 2 Maccabees 9:9 of Antiochus Epiphanes.

In Job 19:26; Hebrew "though after my skin (is destroyed) this (body) is destroyed," Job omits "body" because it was so wasted as not to deserve the name. The tolath was to eat the grapes of apostate Israel (Deuteronomy 28:39); also Jonah's gourd (Jonah 4:7). Hell is associated with the "worm that dieth not," an image from maggots preying on putrid carcass (Isaiah 66:24). (See HELL.) Mark 9:44; Mark 9:46; Mark 9:48, "THEIR worm" is the gnawing self reproach of conscience, ever continuing and unavailing remorse. The Lord Jesus represents here both the worm and those on whom it preys as never dying. Symbolizing at once decay and loathsome humiliation, and this everlasting.

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Bibliography Information
Fausset, Andrew R. Entry for 'Worm'. Fausset's Bible Dictionary. 1949.

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