11th December 2013

The Diet Of Worms

“But I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people.”
Psalm 22:6 (KJV)

When we look at worms, from whence we derive the word vermin, we can draw parallels between the worms (rimmah) which are associated with corruption, decaying flesh and putrescence (Job 7:5 and 24:20), and mankind’s depraved, fallen state. Earthworms, for example, hate the light and will retreat into the dark if you lift a stone and expose one. Some people despise them and tread on them, although earthworms do some good by aerating the soil.

In Job 25:6 we read, “How much less man, that is a worm? and the son of man, which is a worm?” Bildad is inspired to use the word rimmah in the first part of this verse, but uses tolaath in the second part of the verse, referring prophetically to Christ. Here the tolaath is a grub of the scale insect (Coccus Ilicis), collected and used for producing scarlet dye. The female fastens herself to a tree, lays her eggs, dies giving birth, her eggs hatch out and the young feed on and eat their way through their mother’s body, whose body fluids stain her corpse and the tree red. After three days, her corpse turns white (See John 6:51-56 and Isaiah 1:18).

Not only do worms provide excellent pictures concerning the corruption, degradation and depravity of fallen man, worms provide excellent pictures concerning the humiliation and sacrifice of Jesus Christ who humbled Himself and fulfilled the antitype of the female scarlet worm.

In Revelation 1, John sees Our Lord and Saviour as He now is—glorified. How awesome that the great and holy I AM should humble Himself, divest Himself of His glory, become vermin, a worm like us, so He could redeem us, transform us , to be conformed to His now glorified state. As I mentioned earlier, the Latin name for the Scarlet worm is Coccus Ilicis. This translates not only as scarlet worm but also IT IS FINISHED!!!!! Our Lord and Saviour’s final words on the cross and probably a more accurate rendering of the words of Psalm 22, all of which, I am inclined to think, He spoke on the cross.

As we get ready to remember Our Lord and Saviour’s first advent, let’s marvel that  the Great Creator God should humble Himself to behold the things that are in heaven and earth. (Psalm 113:5-6 and Philippians 2:5-11) and fulfil the antitype of the lowly scarlet worm.

Father, what can we say? Your grace and truth, Your plan of redemption embodied in Christ Jesus, Your only begotten Son, are staggering, especially as pictured by Jesus, the ultimate Scarlet Worm. Thank you seems totally inadequate. Please help us to stand in awe and respond as you desire. In Jesus name.

Study by John Armstrong


johnarmstrongAbout the Author:
John Armstrong is on the Pastoral Council of the Exeter Congregation of the Worldwide church of God, UK.

Local Congregation:
Worldwide Church of God Exeter
America Hall
De La Rue Way

Meeting Time:
Saturday 11:00am

Local Congregational Contact:
John Armstrong
Phone:  01392-421066
Email:  johnarmstrong318@btinternet.com

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