worm Summary and Overview
worm in Easton's Bible Dictionary
(1.) Heb. sas (Isa. 51:8), denotes the caterpillar of the clothes-moth. (2.) The manna bred worms (tola'im), but on the Sabbath there was not any worm (rimmah) therein (Ex. 16:20, 24). Here these words refer to caterpillars or larvae, which feed on corrupting matter. These two Hebrew words appear to be interchangeable (Job 25:6; Isa. 14:11). Tola'im in some places denotes the caterpillar (Deut. 28:39; Jonah 4:7), and rimmah, the larvae, as bred from putridity (Job 17:14; 21:26; 24:20). In Micah 7:17, where it is said, "They shall move out of their holes like worms," perhaps serpents or "creeping things," or as in the Revised Version, "crawling things," are meant. The word is used figuratively in Job 25:6; Ps. 22:6; Isa. 41:14; Mark 9:44, 46, 48; Isa. 66:24.
worm in Smith's Bible Dictionary
the representative in the Authorized Version of several Hebrew words. Sas, which occurs in #Isa 51:18| probably denotes some particular species of moth, whose larva is injurious to wool. Rimmah, #Ex 16:20| points evidently to various kinds of maggots and the larvae of insects which feed on putrefying animal matter, rather than to earthworms. Toleah is applied in #De 28:39| to some kinds of larvae destructive to the vines. In #Job 19:26; 21:26; 24:20| there is an allusion to worms (insect larvae) feeding on the dead bodies of the buried. There is the same allusion in #Isa 66:24| which words are applied by our Lord, #Mr 9:44,46,48| metaphorically to the torments of the guilty in the world of departed spirits. The valley of Hinnom near Jerusalem, where the filth of the city was cast, was alive with worms. The death of Herod Agrippa I, was caused by worms. #Ac 12:23|
worm in Schaff's Bible Dictionary
WORM . Several Hebrew words are thus translated which seem to designate indefinitely caterpillars or maggots, either as destructive, as loathsome, or as helpless and insignificant. For the larva of the clothes-moth, evidently mentioned in Isa 51:8, see Moth. In Mic 7:17, "worm" should be "serpent" or "reptile." From the circumstance that maggots are found in putrefying flesh, we have the figurative expressions in Job 19:26; Job 21:26; Job 24:20; Isa 14:11. Owing to the constant accumulation of filth and putrefaction in a valley near Jerusalem it was always alive with worms, and fires were maintained day and night to consume the sources of pestilence. Hence the allusion Isa 66:24; Mark 9:44, 1 Chr 2:46, Gen 24:48. At an advanced stage of some diseases worms are bred in the flesh from the eggs of the insect. Job 7:5; Ex 17:14; Acts 12:23. The meanness of these creatures, and their liability to be trodden under foot, afford the illustrations in Job 25:6; Ps 22:6; Isa 41:14.
worm in Fausset's Bible Dictionary
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.