the girl had not ceased forever to exist but would be as one awakened from her sleep. Also, this girl had not been buried, nor had her body had time to begin decaying, as had the body of Lazarus. (John 11:39, 43, 44) On the basis of the authority granted to him by his Father, Jesus could say this just as does his Father, “who makes the dead alive and calls the things that are not as though they were.”—Rom. 4:17; compare Matthew 22:32.
It should be noted that the term “asleep” is applied in the Scriptures to those dying because of the death passed on from Adam. Those suffering the “second death” are not spoken of as asleep. Rather, they are shown to be completely annihilated, out of existence, burned up as by an unquenchable fire.—Rev. 20:14, 15; compare Hebrews 10:26-31, where a contrast is made between those who died because of violating the Mosaic law and the much more severe punishment meted out to Christians who turn to a willful practice of sin; Heb. 6:4-8.
See ARMS, ARMOR.
In early times, slingers of stones formed an important part of a military force. The tribe of Benjamin had 700 picked men, every one of whom was “a slinger of stones to a hairbreadth and would not miss.” (Judg. 20:15, 16) The Targums say that the Cherethites and Pelethites among David’s warriors were adept slingers. Slingmen were an important part of King Uzziah’s military force in the ninth century B.C.E. (2 Chron. 26:13, 14) In the next century Sennacherib employed a corps of slingers in the Assyrian army, as monuments attest. The fighting forces of the Egyptians, Syrians, Persians, Sicilians and others also had similar divisions. In the Roman army slingers were among the auxilia rather than the Legion. (See ARMY [Roman].) As late as the first century C.E., Jewish slingers pitted their skill against Roman forces.—Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews, Book XVII chap X, par. 2; Wars of the Jews, Book II, chap. XVII, par. 5; Book IV, chap. I, par. 3.
In ancient armies the slingers usually made up only one division of the foot soldiers. Archers, as a complement of the slingers, and spearmen in lesser numbers completed the infantry. When called forward to begin an engagement or to stall an enemy advance, the slingers passed from the rear of the ranks through corridors among the soldiers. At other times they fired from behind and over the heads of the spearmen. Slingers were especially effective fighters when attacking walled cities. Their missiles, hurled from the ground, could pick the enemy off the walls or reach targets inside the city. (2 Ki. 3:25) When siege engines and assault towers were developed, slingers took advantage of the elevated positions their platforms afforded.
An advantage of the slinger over the armor-clad swordsman or spearman was his effectiveness from a distance. It is claimed that their range of effectiveness was up to 400 feet (c. 122 meters) with stones, and even farther with lead pellets.
DAVID’S USE OF THE SLING
To become a skilled and experienced slinger required much time and training. Young shepherd boys attending and protecting flocks against beasts of prey developed the needed skill. The shepherd-boy David felt much better equipped with his sling than with the heavy armor of Saul. But he would doubtless have been unable to stand before Goliath without faith and the strength of Jehovah. The outcome of the fight depended, not on superiority of weapons or upon skill, but upon Jehovah, who supported David. As David called out to Goliath: “I am coming to you with the name of Jehovah of armies, . . . whom you have taunted. . . . And all this congregation will know that neither with sword nor with spear does Jehovah save, because to Jehovah belongs the battle.” It was a stone from David’s sling, no doubt guided and given unusual force by Jehovah, that sank into Goliath’s forehead, striking him down so that David could “definitely put him to death” by Goliath’s own sword.—1 Sam. 17:38-51.
[Heb. ʽa·shanʹ; Gr., ka·pnosʹ].
The visible soot-producing mixture of carbon particles and gases from burning organic materials; also vapor or a cloud resembling smoke. Aside from the mention of literal smoke in numerous instances, there are a number of figurative uses of the word, and there is figurative meaning to the appearance of smoke itself.
JEHOVAH’S PRESENCE, AND HIS ANGER
Jehovah has manifested his presence by a cloud of “smoke,” sometimes accompanied by fire. (Ex. 19:18; 20:18; Isa. 4:5) He symbolized his presence at the temple in Jerusalem at the time of its inauguration, and also at the visionary temples seen by Isaiah the prophet and by John the apostle.—1 Ki. 8:10-12; Isa. 6:1-6; Rev. 15:8; see CLOUD.
Smoke is also associated with Jehovah’s burning anger. (Deut. 29:20) On the other hand, those in Israel who had fallen away to the worship of false gods were said to be “a smoke” in God’s nostrils, signifying that they provoked his great anger.—Isa. 65:5.
A WARNING OR PORTENT
Smoke signals were used in warfare to communicate messages between cities or divisions of an army. (Judg. 20:38-40) It was also an evidence that something was being destroyed by fire, as, for example, smoke rising from a distant city. (Gen. 19:28; Josh. 8:20, 21) Or it could metaphorically refer to an army on its way to accomplish destruction, which often included the burning of conquered cities.—Isa. 14:31.
Consequently, a rising column or cloud of smoke came to be used symbolically as a token of warning, a portent of woe to come or of destruction. (Rev. 9:2-4; compare Joel 2:30, 31; Acts 2:19, 20; Revelation 9:17, 18.) The psalmist says of the wicked: “In smoke they must come to their end.” (Ps. 37:20) Smoke also symbolized the evidence of destruction. (Rev. 18:9, 18) Smoke that keeps ascending “to time indefinite” therefore is evidently an expression denoting complete and everlasting annihilation, as in Isaiah’s prophecy against Edom: “to time indefinite its smoke will keep ascending.” (Isa. 34:5, 10) Edom as a nation was wiped out and remains desolated to this day, and the evidence of this fact stands in the Bible account and in the records of secular history. Similarly, the everlasting destruction of Babylon the Great is foretold at Revelation 18:8, and a like judgment is entered against those who worship the “wild beast” and its image, at Revelation 14:9-11.
Just as smoke normally dissipates quickly and disappears, so it sometimes figuratively denotes that which is transitory. It is used with regard to: God’s enemies (Ps. 68:2), idol worshipers (Hos. 13:3) and the shortened life of the afflicted one.—Ps. 102:3.
OTHER FIGURATIVE USES
“As vinegar to the teeth and as smoke to the eyes, so the lazy man is to those sending him forth,” says the proverb. Just as smoke causes the eyes to sting and smart, so the one who employs a lazy man does so to the injury of his own purposes.—Prov. 10:26.
The psalmist, waiting for Jehovah to comfort him, says: “I have become like a skin bottle in the smoke.” (Ps. 119:83) Skin bottles, such as used in the Middle East, hanging on the wall when not in use, became dried up and shriveled from the smoke of the house. So the psalmist had become at the hands of those persecuting him.
Jehovah, in describing his creations to Job, calls attention to Leviathan, saying: “Out of [its] nostrils smoke goes forth, like a furnace set aflame even with