NBST 520

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Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary

II Corinthians 12:7-10
A contemplation of an assortment of Theories regarding Paul’s “Thorn in the Flesh”

An essay
Submitted to Dr. Rodney Woo
In Partial Fulfillment
Of the Requirements for the Course
New testament Orientation II
NBST522

By
Vernon L Langley
June 29, 2013
Table of Contents
Introduction--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------2 Paul’s “thorn in the flesh” as Described in II Cor. 12.1-9:--------------------------------------2 Hypothesis Surrounding Paul’s “thorn in the flesh”---------------------------------------------7 Conclusions regarding Paul’s “thorn in the flesh”---------------------------------------------- 14 Conclusion---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------14 Endnotes------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------15 Bibliography-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------18  

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Introduction
Apostle Paul’s “thorn in the flesh” possibly will never be explicit; scripture offers valuable insight into his suffering and directs the person who reads to its possible identity through Paul’s suffering. “There was given to me a thorn in the flesh.” 1 This expressions stated by Apostle Paul in II Corinthians has develop into a thorn in the flesh of it’s own as perceived by theologians.  Even as many are able to grasp the authenticity of Paul’s “thorn” and its purpose in Paul’s life, no common hypothesis has been offered to resolve its identity.  It appears probable that Paul’s unique addressees understood the precise character of Paul’s “thorn” however; modern theologians are left mainly in the dark.  Even though numerous academics raise assumptions from what Paul wrote in II-Corinthians and other books, Paul furnishes no solid information to identify the specific distinctiveness of his suffering.  Paul’s “thorn in the flesh” as Described in [II Cor. 12.1-9:] Additionally, no major sources beyond scripture have ever resolved this matter, yet through these specifics numerous theories has surface on the subject.  Although an indisputable picture concerning the disposition of Paul’s “thorn” may never be apprehended, scripture gives precious insight into his suffering and allows present-day readers to theorize its characteristics as Described in [II Cor. 12.1-10]. Prior to researching the different assumptions surrounding Paul’s “thorn” the text which was printed by Paul personally must be studied.  The main support surrounding Paul’s “thorn” is established in [II-Cor. 12.7-9].  Apostle Paul writes, “Lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.” 2 [1] II Corinthians 12.7, KJV

[2] II Cor. 12.7
Apostle Paul’s reference to “revelations” allows the one who reads to look back to the glorified occurrence he describes in [II Corinthians 12.1-6]. In that portion of Scripture Paul remarks, “I knew a man in Christ” who was caught up into paradise which he described as the “third heaven” and was permitted to hear “unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.” 3 Even though no agreement has been reached concerning the precise nature of Paul’s revelation, for the basis of this effort, it will be believed Paul is alluding to an occurrence whereby he was carried into the throne room of God.  However this occurrence possibly did or didn’t essentially transpire; a position that will be talked about a little more as personal hypothesis are reflected upon. 4 Subsequent to this revelation it appears that Paul was vulnerable to the transgression of pride as he clarifies the “thorn” was given...
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