Tola (biblical figure)

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For other uses, see Tola (disambiguation).

Tola (Hebrew: תּוֹלָע, Modern Tola, Tiberian Tôlāʻ ; "Worm; grub") was one of the Judges of Israel whose career is documented in Judges 10:1-2. Tola, the son of Puah and the grandson of Dodo from the tribe of Issachar, judged Israel for twenty-three years after Abimelech died and lived at Shamir in Mount Ephraim, where he was also buried.

Of all the Biblical judges, the least is written about Tola. None of his deeds are recorded. The entire account from Judges 10:1-2 (KJV) follows:

1And after Abimelech there arose to defend Israel Tola the son of Puah, the son of Dodo, a man of Issachar; and he dwelt in Shamir in mount Ephraim.
2And he judged Israel twenty and three years, and died, and was buried in Shamir.

Tola (meaning worm, but also used for scarlet) is in contrast to son of Puah (meaning splendid and was the name of one of the Egyptian midwives who saved the little Israelite boys.) A tola worm lives in a tree and is crushed to make a red dye (hence the word use for scarlet) . This is the word used in Psalm 22, 'I am a worm (tola) and not a man.'

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Tola of Issachar
Preceded by
Abimelech
Judge of Israel Succeeded by
Jair