Join Michael Patton, Tim Kimberley and Sam Storms as they discuss Paul’s thorn in the flesh? Was it something specific that we can know about, or was this just a way of saying “pain in the neck”? Find out here.

C Michael Patton
C Michael Patton

C. Michael Patton is the primary contributor to the Parchment and Pen/Credo Blog. He has been in ministry for nearly twenty years as a pastor, author, speaker, and blogger. Find him on Patreon Th.M. Dallas Theological Seminary (2001), president of Credo House Ministries and Credo Courses, author of Now that I'm a Christian (Crossway, 2014) Increase My Faith (Credo House, 2011), and The Theology Program (Reclaiming the Mind Ministries, 2001-2006), host of Theology Unplugged, and primary blogger here at Parchment and Pen. But, most importantly, husband to a beautiful wife and father to four awesome children. Michael is available for speaking engagements. Join his Patreon and support his ministry

    4 replies to "Theology Unplugged: Problem Passages 14 – What was Paul’s Thorn in the Flesh?"

    • david carlson

      your short description is for the previous PP

    • Norm

      I have to side with MacArthur on this one. It seems clear to me it must be a “being” to be a messenger from Satan and in this context is likely the demon possessed leader of the false teachers at Corinth who was constantly “dogging” Paul before his beloved Corinthians.

    • Jeff Ayers

      “It is as plain as the nose on your face”
      2 Corinthians 12:7 …. there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me…”

      Eye problems is the thorn? (Gal 4:16; 6:11) Pure speculation

      crude speech or weak presence is the thorn in the flesh? (2 Cor 10:10) sheer eisegesis.

      Lets not make it a nebulous, mystical unobtainable concept that we have to search for.

      A thorn in the flesh …which is????
      “the messenger of Satan to buffet me.”

      The thorn in the flesh was the messenger of Satan.

      Who is the messenger of Satan and in what ways did this messenger buffet Paul?

      Example? Too many to list:

      Acts 18:12 And when Gallio was the deputy of Achaia, the Jews made insurrection with one accord against Paul, and brought him to the judgment seat,

      Acts 13:8 But Elymas the sorcerer (for so is his name by interpretation) withstood them, seeking to turn away the deputy from the faith.

      Acts 13:50 But the Jews stirred up the devout and honourable women, and the chief men of the city, and raised persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and expelled them out of their coasts.

      Acts 17:5 But the Jews which believed not, moved with envy, took unto them certain lewd fellows of the baser sort, and gathered a company, and set all the city on an uproar, and assaulted the house of Jason, and sought to bring them out to the people.

      Acts 21:27-28 And when the seven days were almost ended, the Jews which were of Asia, when they saw him in the temple, stirred up all the people, and laid hands on him, 28 Crying out, Men of Israel, help: This is the man, that teacheth all men every where against the people, and the law, and this place: and further brought Greeks also into the temple, and hath polluted this holy place.

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