Thursday, August 29, 2013


And he took his staff in his hand, and chose him five smooth stones out of the brook. He put them in a shepherd's bag which he had, a lunch bag. His sling(shot) was in his hand. He drew near to the Philistine.  (1Sa 17:40)
Most of my reader(s) are very familar with the story above taken from I Samuel.  This particular slingshot story took place approximately 3050 years ago. Yes, slingshots are that old.  The ones in use during ancient biblical times are mostly referred to as shepherds slings.  These consisted of a pouch of some sort which held the projectile along with the sling made of  braided material such as flax, hemp or wool. The slings were used to create the centrifugal force for the release of the projectile.  Even the army infantry had their specialists in the art of slinging. “Among all this people there were seven hundred chosen men lefthanded; every one could sling stones at an hair breadth, and not miss. Judges 20:16”

One tends to think that in the biblical account between David and Goliath that the smooth stones David selected from the brook were smooth flat stones.  Now if you have ever picked up a smooth flat stone it cannot be hurled with any accuracy.  This particular type of stone would have sailed worse than any hook or slice you could hit with a golf ball.  The stones David used were smooth but probably round and about a third the size of a golf ball. These would have been best for the most accurate throw.  And, of course, if you are Reformed in your theology you know there was another hand involved in the slinging of that one particular stone.  David would acknowledge his total dependence upon his creator in Psalm 62:6 “He only is my rock and my salvation: he is my defense; I shall not be moved.”

Now, recently I have taken up the art of slinging.  Slinging, yes, but not the biblical or ancient type.  I have been creating and shooting various styles of 21st century slingshots which utilize either surgical tubing or theraband gold elastics.  As a side note, I am no where near slinging at “hair breadth” accuracy, although as with anything, practice does make for improved performance.

I’ve posted below some of the my favorite creations: (click images to enlarge)

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