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The Crimson Worm | Psalm 22

Oh Psalm 22… The prophetic psalm of the cross.  It’s fascinating to read it knowing exactly what happened 1,000 years after it was written.  David didn’t live to see the crucifixion of his God, but he certainly wrote about it in this psalm.

But did you ever wonder what it means in verse 6 where it says, “I am a worm”??  Believe me, you want to read on.  It’s fascinating!!

Normally in the bible, the word worm refers to something along the lines of a maggot… but not in this line of scripture.  The Hebrew word used here is a very specific type of worm- TOLA’ATH …. meaning “crimson worm” or “scarlet worm.”  Both the red color of blood.

Now this is where it gets totally crazy:

When it’s time for the crimson worm to have babies, she finds the trunk of a tree (or any sort of wooden stick, fence, etc.) and attaches her body to that wood making a hard crimson shell.  She is attached so strongly that she can’t be removed without tearing her body apart and killing her.

She then lays the eggs, and when the babies are born they are kept under the shell- She protects them and they even feed off of her living body!

After a few days, the mother dies- Listen closely!  When she dies, she oozes a crimson red dye that not only stains the wood she was attached to but also her young children.  That is how they get their red color- they remain that dyed red for the rest of their lives.

Wait, there’s more.  THEN, after 3 days (THREE DAYS!!!) the dead mother’s body loses it’s red color and turns into a white wax that falls to the ground like snow.

So, I guess when “I am a TOLA’ATH” was written, there wasn’t much exaggeration, huh?

Amazing, right?  Oh how I love these hidden gems in the Bible.

“Though your sins are like scarlet,
    they shall be as white as snow;
though they are red as crimson,
    they shall be like wool.”  Isaiah 1:18

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