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Pauls Thorn in the Flesh - (Handout)

JOHN 8:32 - *If theres a ___________ you can KNOW that will set you free, then theres also an _______________ that you can e DECEIVED WITH that will hold you in onda!e"

THE CONTEXT OF PAULS THORN -The conte#t of Pauls thorn actually e!ins ac$ in 11 Cor. 11:22, where Paul is defendin! his %inistry a!ainst the ______________ of false teachers& -There were false teachers !oin! around sayin! that' Paul is not really an a(ostle& )r, if he is, hes not an a(ostle of our cali er" *ou cant trust what hes sayin!& *ou should only listen to us& -+o, Paul is defendin! his %inistry a!ainst the accusations of false teachers& -Pauls defense of his %inistry consists of _________ (oints& ()r' Three thin!s that he has endured for the ,os(els sa$e, that he uses as (roof of his %inistry and callin!&) (a) Persecutions and _____________ (hes faced on the %ission field) - (v. 23-26) ( ) ( ) _____________ needs (hes endured while %inisterin!) - (v. 2 ) (c) Inward _____________ (that has co%e ecause of the (ressures of the %inistry) - (v. 28) *Paul shares these thin!s with the -orinthian (eo(le, ho(in! they will reali.e that no %an in his ri!ht %ind would endure such hardshi( for nothin!& )nly a true call of ,od could $ee( a %an on course, in situations li$e these& -Paul ends the list in v!r"! 3#, and refers to these thin!s as his ______________& (/nderline it, and notice that the word infir%ities here has nothin! to do with sic$ness& It doesnt refer to sic$ness of any $ind" It refers to the hardshi( that Paul has endured for the ,os(els sa$e") *Then, in C$%&'!r 12, he continues his defense y relatin! so%e of the 0isions and ___________ that hes had& 11 Cor. 12:1 - 1no# - If we are to oast (althou!h oastin! is out of (lace), I will !o on to the 0isions and re0elations that the 2ord has !ranted %e& -3!ain, Pauls ______________ in relatin! these thin!s is TH4 54F46-4 )F HI+ 7I6I+T8*& He wants to re!ain the confidence of the -orinthian (eo(le, that has een lost throu!h these false accusations&

PAULS RE(ELATION -+ince Paul is usin! his re0elation as (roof of his %inistry and callin!, lets ta$e a %o%ent and find out what that re0elation was& -Pauls re0elation consisted of 9 %a:or (oints&

PAULS RE(ELATION: (;) <hat ,od did )))))))) ))))))), throu!h the death, urial and resurrection of =esus& (>) <hat ,od wrou!ht )))))) )))))), throu!h the new irth, and the a(tis% in the Holy +(irit& (?) <hat and ))))))) ))))))) ))))))) to ,od, in -hrist& (@) <hat =esus is )))))))))))) FOR US NO*, in his (resent-day %inistry, at the 8i!ht Hand of the Father& (9) <hat ,od can +O ))))))))))))))))))) US, as we %inister His <ord to others&

**oull notice that the ul$ of this re0elation had to do with <H) <4 384 I6 -H8I+T, and <H3T <4 -36 5) F)8 ,)5, as elie0ers" -,od, throu!h Paul, was lettin! the church $now what He had _________________ throu!h the death, urial, and resurrection of =esus -hrist& -6ow, that was good news for the -hurch, ut dont you $now, it was bad news for the de0il& -*ou see, the de0il didnt want the -hurch to $now these thin!s" *He didnt want the -hurch to $now <ho they were in -hrist" *He didnt want the -hurch to $now what =esus was doin! for the%, at the 8&H& of the F& *3nd, he certainly didnt want the% to $now what they could acco%(lish for ,od, y %inisterin! ,ods <ord to others" -3nd so, &r,or,'- ./01!r o.!, with the de0il, eca%e' ___________ P3/2+ 84A423TI)6"

*+o, thats the -)6T4BT of Pauls Thorn& Hes defendin! his %inistry a!ainst the accusations of false teachers& (3nd, one of his !reatest ar!u%ents, was the re0elation hed recei0ed&)

-3ll ri!ht& 6ow that we $now the context, lets loo$ at the reason for Pauls Thorn&

THE REASON FOR PAULS THORN 11 Cor. 12: - 3nd lest I should e e#alted a o0e %easure throu!h the a undance of the re0elations, there was !i0en to %e a thorn in the flesh, the %essen!er of +atan to uffet %e, lest I should e e#alted a o0e %easure& -Twice, in this one 0erse, Paul says that the P/8P)+4 of this thorn in the flesh was to $ee( hi% fro% ein! _______________ a o0e %easure, TH8)/,H TH4 84A423TI)6+& -6ow, do you $now what the word e#alted %eansC It has NOTHING to do with PRIDE (We read that in there") -6o& In the ,ree$, the word is hu(erairo%ai, and it %eans, to raise o0er, to ele0ate, to lift u( a o0e, or, to throw eyond the ____________ %ar$ of li0in!& -6ow, ecause we thou!ht that the word e#alted %eant lifted u( in (ride, we read that and said, <ell, ,od didnt want Paul to eco%e (roud, so He !a0e Paul a thorn in the flesh, to $ee( hi% hu% le"& Dut, that isnt what it said at all" -<hat it really said, is e#actly what we0e een tal$in! a out" -The de0il saw that ,od was !i0in! Paul a 84A423TI)6 of what =esus had acco%(lished at the ____________, and he $new that it would chan!e Pauls life" -He $new that it would lift (or e#alt) Paul into a (lace where he, (and all those who heard hi%), could wal$ free of the de0ils influence, and actually e!in to !o0ern his affairs" 3nd, lest that should ha((en, there was !i0en to Paul, a thorn in the flesh, the %essen!er OF SATAN, to uffet hi%& (6otice, this thorn in the flesh didnt co%e fro% ,od" It was the %essen!er of +3T36")

*HAT *AS PAULS THORN2 8eli!ious tradition will tell us that no one $nows what Pauls thorn in the flesh was& They will say, 3ll we can do is s(eculate" Dut, in v!r"! , Paul (lainly tells us what his thorn in the flesh was" -He said it was, THE 3ESSEN4ER OF ________________, sent to uffet hi%& -Here a!ain, well find it hel(ful to loo$ into the ,ree$&

-In the ,ree$, the word thats translated here as %essen!er, is actually the word an!elos, which %eans _____________& (Its the sa%e word that =esus used, when He said that hell was (re(ared for the de0il and his an!els&)-+o, in v!r"! , Paul identifies his thorn in the flesh, as ein! the an!el of the de0il, sent to uffet hi%& -<ell loo$ %ore in de(th at this an!el of the de0il, in a few %o%ents, ut ri!ht now, I want to loo$ a little closer at the ter%, thorn in the flesh&

5THORN IN THE FLESH6 -The ter%, thorn in the flesh, is actually a He rew Idio%& (3n idio% is an acce(ted (hrase or e#(ression, ha0in! a %eanin! _______________ fro% the literal&)-<e ha0e a lot of idio%s in the 4n!lish lan!ua!e, as well& For e#a%(le, I %i!ht say that a (erson is a (ain in the nec$" <ell, when I use that ter%, I% not tal$in! a out a literal (ain in %y nec$, a% IC -6o& 40en thou!h I /+45 TH4 _______________, (ain in the nec$, I wasnt T321I6, 3D)/T a (ain in the nec$& I %eant the (erson was an annoyance& -6ow, if I was to write you a letter, and tell you that %y new oss was a (ain in the nec$, I wouldnt ta$e three (a!es to e#(lain to you that I wasnt s(ea$in! literally& Youve heard the ter% efore" *ou know I% not s(ea$in! literally& -Dut, if so%eone fro% Iran was to read %y letter, he %i!ht !et the wron! idea& He %i!ht tell his fa%ily, They sure ha0e a stran!e way of disci(linin! you on the :o , in -anada" I hear that when you do so%ethin! wron!, they hurt your nec$"-6ow, we s%ile at that, ut thats exactly what we0e done with Pauls thorn in the flesh& <e loo$ed at a ter% that was ne0er meant to e ta$en literally - and we too$ it literally, and !ot into error" -The ter% thorn in the flesh is an idio%& Its an acce(ted (hrase or e#(ression, ha0in! a %eanin! different fro% the literal&

*HERE IS THIS TER3 USE+ IN THE 7I7LE2 -The idio%, thorn in the flesh, is used _________ ti%es in the <ord of ,od, (in one for% or another)& It a((ear ? ti%es in the )ld Testa%ent, and once in the 6ew& 3nd, ,od ne0er lea0es us in the dar$, concernin! the %eanin! of the ter%& NU37ERS 33:8#-86 3nd the 2ord s(a$e unto 7oses in the (lains of 7oa y =ordan near =ericho sayin!, +(ea$ unto the children of Israel, and say unto the%, <hen ye are (assed o0er =ordan into the land of -anaanE Then ye shall dri0e out all the INHA7ITANTS of the land fro% efore you, and destroy all their

(ictures, and destroy all their %olten i%a!es, and Fuite (luc$ down all their hi!h (laces ((laces of idol worshi()E 3nd ye shall dis(ossess the INHA7ITANTS of the land, and dwell therein' for I ha0e !i0en you the land to (ossess it&&& 99 Dut if ye will not dri0e out the INHA7ITANTS of the land fro% efore youE then it shall co%e to (ass that those INHA7ITANTS which ye let re%ain of the% shall e (ric$s in your eyes, and ______________ IN 9OUR SI+ES , and shall 0e# you in the land, wherein ye dwell&&& -(Paul used the (hrase, thorn in the flesh& Here in 6u% ers, the ter% is thorns in your sides& Theyre oth the sa%e He rew Idio%&)-6ow, I want you to notice, here in 6u% ers ??, that it tells us 4B3-T2* what the thorn in the flesh was to e& It was actually !oin! to e the I6H3DIT36T+ of the land, (or in other words, the -36336IT4+)& -6ow, what has ha((ened is this' Peo(le ha0e ta$en the ter% thorn in the flesh literally, and ha0e (ut so%e sort of (hysical ail%ent on Paul& (7eanin! that so%ethin! was actually in his flesh&)-Dut, if we ta$e 2 CORINTHIANS literally, then we also ha0e to ta$e NU37ERS 33 literally, since its the sa%e ter%& -3ll ri!ht, then& 2ets ta$e it literally& (!r"! 88 said, If you dont dri0e out the inha itants of the land, then theyll eco%e P8I-1+ I6 *)/8 4*4+, and TH)86+ I6 *)/8 +I54+& -6ow, if we ta$e this literally, then ,od %ust ha0e een sayin!, If you dont re%o0e these (eo(le out of the land, then youll ha0e a -anaanites le! stic$in! out of your ___________, and youll ha0e a -anaanites hand stic$in! out of your __________" -<as that what it %eantC 6o& *IN NEITHER P !"E W!# THI# TER$ $E!NT T% &E T!'EN ITER! Y(

THEN *HAT +I+ IT 3EAN2 -<ell, then, what did ,od %ean, when He told the% that the -anaanites would eco%e thorns in their sidesC *8e%e% er' )ne of the first thin!s that ,od told the% to do when they entered into the land was to P2/-1 5)<6 their (laces of ___________ <)8+HIP (hi!h (laces)& -,od was warnin! His (eo(le of the dan!ers of !ettin! in0ol0ed in idol worshi(& 3nd, in essence, He was sayin!, If you let the -anaanites coha it the land with you, then sooner or later, youre !oin! to e worshi((in! <ITH TH47" -+o, it was the P4)P24 that were !oin! to e the thorn in the flesh& 3nd, youll find out that E(ER9 TI3E THIS PHRASE IS USE+ IN THE *OR+ OF 4O+: IT AL*A9S

REFERS TO A )))))))))))))))))))); 3 (ersonality that would e an 366)*36-4, to draw you away fro% the thin!s of ,od& 3 thorn cho$in! the <ord& (+ee 3%r< =:18-1>)& -In 6u% ers ??, its the I6H3DIT36T+ of the land" In > -orinthians ;>, its the %essen!er (or an!el) of +atan& Doth ti%es, its a (ersonality" (*ou can chec$ out the other references yourself' =oshua >?';;-;?E and =ud!es >';-@)& *2ets !o ac$ to Pauls an!elos& (;; -or& ;>'G)& 6ow, re%e% er, Paul has :ust identified his thorn in the flesh as ein! the an!el of the de0il& 2ets read it a!ain, and see if we can find out that an!els assi!n%ent&

*AS THE AN4EL SENT TO 3A?E PAUL SIC?2 )r, was he sent for so%e other (ur(oseC Aerse G - There was !i0en to %e a thorn in the flesh, the %essen!er (an!el) of +atan, TO 7UFFET 3E&&& -+o, this an!el was sent to uffet Paul& The word uffet %eans, to stri$e __________ after ___________& -This fallen an!el was sent to stir u( ______________, e0erywhere Paul went& 2ets turn o0er to the Doo$ of 3cts, and watch this an!el in action& THE 5AN4ELOS6 IN ACTS -3s you read throu!h the Doo$ of 3cts, you can see the effects of this %essen!er of +atan on e0ery (a!e" ACTS >:23-28 ACTS >:26-2> ACTS 13:==-=> ACTS 13:1=:8#-82 ACTS 1=:1-8 ACTS 1=:6-1> The =ews too$ counsel to $ill Paul, ri!ht after his con0ersion He was hindered in :oinin! the -hristians He was o((osed y the =ews in a %o He was e#(elled out of 3ntioch He was %o ed and e#(elled out of Iconiu% He fled into 2ystra and 5er e where he was stoned and left for dead

ACTS 16:12-=# ACTS 1 :1-1# ACTS 1 :1#-1= ACTS 18:1-23 ACTS 1>:8 ACTS 2#:3 ACTS 21-28

He was eaten and :ailed at Phili((i He was %o ed and e#(elled fro% Thessalonica He was %o ed and e#(elled fro% Derea He was %o ed at -orinth He was dis(utin! continually with false rethren There was a (lot a!ainst his life y the =ews He was sei.ed y the =ews, %o ed, and tried in court 9 ti%es

-5oes that sound li$e low after low to youC +ure, it does" It also sounds li$e > -orinthians ;;, (the conte#t of Pauls thorn)"

A3PLIFIE+ - 3re they He rewsC +o a% I" They are IsraelitesC +o a% I" They are descendants of 3 raha%C +o a% I" 3re they (%inisterin!) ser0ants of -hrist, the 7essiahC I a% tal$in! li$e one eside hi%self, H utI I a% %ore, with far %ore e#tensi0e and a undant la ors, with far %ore i%(rison%ents, H eatenI with countless stri(es, and freFuently Hat the (oint ofI death& Fi0e ti%es I recei0ed fro% the =ews forty Hlashes allI ut oneE Three ti%es I ha0e een eaten with rodsE once I was stoned& Three ti%es I ha0e een a oard a shi( wrec$ed at seaE a HwholeI ni!ht and a day I ha0e s(ent (adrift) on the dee(E 7any ti%es on :ourneys, He#(osed toI (erils fro% ri0ers, (erils fro% andits, (erils fro% H%y ownI nation, (erils fro% the ,entiles, (erils in the city, (erils in the desert (laces, (erils in the sea, (erils fro% those (osin! as elie0ers - ut destitute of -hristian $nowled!e and (ietyE In toil and hardshi(, watchin! often (throu!h slee(less ni!hts), in hun!er and thirst, freFuently dri0en to fastin! y want, in cold and e#(osure and lac$ of clothin!& 3nd esides those thin!s that are without, there is the daily Hinesca(a le (ressureI of %y care and an#iety for all the churches" -3!ain, we see the %essen!er causin! low after low, after low"


-<e0e esta lished that Pauls thorn was not a sic$ness, ut a %essen!er (an!el) sent to uffet Paul, to $ee( hi% fro% ein! e#alted y the <ord& -6ow, here in 2 Cor. 12:8, Paul says, Three ti%es I e!!ed the 2ord to ha0e ________ lea0e %e alone& (Dec$s translation - 6otice, it called the thorn a hi%") -Three ti%es I e!!ed the 2ord to ha0e hi% lea0e %e alone" (!r"! > - 3nd he (,od) said unto %e, 7y ,race is sufficient for thee' for %y stren!th is %ade (erfect in wea$ness& -6ow, in order for us to fully understand what the 2ord said to Paul here, well first need to ha0e a clear understandin! of what Paul ______________& -Heres the situation' The de0il assi!ned a fallen an!el to hinder Pauls %inistry, and P3/2 3+145 ,)5 to !et the an!el off hi%" *et, 6)<H484 I6 TH4 64< T4+T3746T, are we 4A48 told to (ray that ____________ would do so%ethin! a out the de0il" -+o, when Paul as$ed ,od to re u$e the de0il, that was a totally unscri(tural (rayer&

THE 7ELIE(ER IS TOL+ TO RE7U?E THE +E(IL -3ll throu!h the 6ew Testa%ent, TH4 _______________ is told to do so%ethin! a out the de0il" JA3ES =: - The understood su :ect of the sentence is ________" *)/ resist the de0il, and he will flee fro% you&1 PETER 8:8-> - 3!ain, the understood su :ect is *)/& If 5-o/6 want the de0il to flee fro% 5-o/6, then 5-o/6 %ust resist hi%" -*ou see, ,)5 H3+ 328435* 5)64 4A48*THI6, H4+ ,)I6, T) 5) 3D)/T TH4 54AI2, for the ti%e ein!" -Hes already sent =esus to the ___________" -Hes already totally defeated the de0il, on your ehalf, and&&& -Hes !i0en you the 6a%e of =esus" *6ow, if anythin!s !oin! to e done a out the de0il, in your life, its !oin! to e done y *)/" (Thats ,ods (lan") -+o, you can see that when Paul (rayed for ,)5 to re%o0e this an!el, it was a totally unscri(tural (rayer"

*+ee, Paul wasnt a o0e %issin! it" He went into one (lace (3cts >;';J->K), and offered (of all thin!s"), a (urification sacrifice, :ust to (lease the =ews" 3nd, he set his %inistry ac$ 9 years" -Paul %issed it, :ust li$e *)/ %iss it" 3nd, when he %issed it, ,od (ointed it out to hi%" *Paul (rayed an unscri(tural ____________, here& 3nd, ,od (ointed it out" *In essence' ,od said, Paul, you dont need 74 to !et the de0il off your case" <hat I0e already done for you, D* 7* ,83-4, is sufficient for you" (+ee, when ,od told Paul, 7y ,race is sufficient, He wasnt sayin! that Paul would :ust ha0e to P/T /P with this thorn" 3ctually, He was sayin! :ust the o((osite") 2et %e I22/+T83T4 it this way' +u((ose I wanted to %o0e fro% -al!ary to 2eth rid!e, and I went too %y 5ad, and said, 5ad, I thin$ wed etter rent a 1enworth to %o0e %y furniture" <hy, hed lau!h, and say, *ou dont need a +e%i, son" The half-ton truc$ we0e )ot is sufficient" -6ow, what did he %ean, when he said, The half-ton truc$ is sufficientC +orry son, you cant %o0eC -6o& He %eant that <H3T I 328435* ________ was _______________ T) 5) TH4 =)D" -3nd, thats what ,od was tellin! Paul" *<hen ,od said, 7y !race is sufficient, He didnt %ean that Paul would :ust ha0e to _______ /P with the thorn" (If that were the case, then ,od should ha0e said, 7y ,race is Insufficient") -6o, ,od was tellin! Paul that what he 328435* _________ was enou!h to do the :o " -*)/ resist hi%, son" Hell flee" 3nd, e0en thou!h, in the natural, you dont loo$ li$e any %atch for hi%, dont worry" 7y stren!th is %ade (erfect in your wea$ness" 11 Cor,.'$,%." 12:> - 7ost !ladly therefore, will I rather !lory in %y I6FI87ITI4+&&& *8e%e% er what infir%ities wereC 3ccordin! to @$%&'!r 11, v!r"! 3#, Pauls infir%ities were his (ersecutions and afflictions" His ________________ for the ,os(els sa$e" (3nd, hes referrin! to the sa%e thin! here") (!r"! > - 7ost !ladly therefore, will I rather !lory in %y I6FI87ITI4+&&& that the P)<48 of -hrist %ay rest u(on %e&&&*In other words, fro% that ti%e on, Paul was !oin! to 0iew e0ery attac$ as an o((ortunity to let ,od 2IA4 __________ in hi%" (!r"! 1# - Therefore I ta$e (leasure in I6FI87ITI4+, in 84P8)3-H4+, in 64-4++ITI4+, In P48+4-/TI)6+, in 5I+T84++4+ for -hrists sa$e' for when I a% wea$, then a% I stron!&

*HAT A7OUT PAULS E9ES2 -7ost (eo(le who elie0e that Paul had ad eyesi!ht, elie0e that way ecause of +cri(tures they read in the Doo$ of ,alatians& 2ets e#a%ine so%e of these 0erses& 4ALATIANS =:13-18 - *e $now how throu!h infir%ity of the flesh, I (reached the !os(el unto you at the first& 3nd %y te%(tation which was I6 7* ____________ ye des(ised not, nor re:ectedE ut recei0ed %e as an an!el of ,od, e0en as -hrist =esus& <here is then the lessedness ye s(a$e ofC for I ear you record, that, if it had een (ossi le, ye would ha0e P2/-145 )/T *)/8 )<6 4*4+, and ha0e !i0en the% to %e& -+o%e ha0e read these 0erses, and concluded that Paul %ust ha0e had (oor eyesi!ht& Dut, thats not the case& 8e%e% er, Pauls eyes were ___________ in A@'" >, when 3nanias (rayed for hi%& (A@'" >:1 -18 - 5o you su((ose ,od did half a :o C) 6o& +o, Pauls eyes were healed then, werent theyC -*et, it does s(ea$ here, in 4%A%',%." =, of an infir%ity of the flesh& I elie0e if we loo$ closely, well e a le to see what that infir%ity was&

AT THE FIRST *Defore we !o any further, I want you to notice that this infir%ity was not so%ethin! that lasted throu!hout Pauls entire %inistry& It was only at the first& (6otice a!ain what Paul said' *e $now how throu!h infir%ity of the flesh, I (reached the !os(el unto you AT THE FIRST&&&)& -In other words, this infir%ity of the flesh was so%ethin! that Paul had *HEN HE _________ CA3E TO 3INISTER to the (eo(le of ,alatia& (That is, on his first %issionary :ourney&) -6ow, in order for us to (in(oint this ti%e, its i%(ortant that we $now so%ethin! a out ,alatia& If you read the first few 0erses of the Doo$ of ,alatians, youll find out that its addressed to the -H/8-H4+ of ,alatia - (lural& Thats ecause ,alatia was not a city, ut a Pro0ince& +o%e of the $ey cities of ,alatia were 3ntioch, Iconiu%, 5er e, and 2ystra& -6ow that we understand that* we can !o ac$ to the Doo$ of 3cts, and see what ha((ened on Pauls first %issionary :ourney to this re!ion&

ACTS 1=:1>-22 - 3nd there ca%e thither certain =ews fro% 3ntioch and Iconiu%, who (ersuaded the (eo(le, and H3AI6, ______________ P3/2, drew hi% out of the city, su((osin! he had een dead& How eit, as the disci(les stood round a out hi%, he rose u(, and ca%e into the city' and TH4 64BT 53* he de(arted with Darna as to 548D4& 3nd, when they had (reached

the !os(el to that city, and had tau!ht %any, they returned a!ain to 2*+T83, and to I-)6I/7, and 36TI)-H& -onfir%in! the souls of the disci(les, and e#hortin! the% to continue in the faith, and that we %ust throu!h %uch tri ulation enter into the $in!do% of ,od& -<hen Paul ca%e to the (ro0ince of ,alatia, 3T TH4 FI8+T, he had :ust een stoned, and left for __________" The disci(les !athered around hi%, ,od raised hi% u(, and TH4 A48* 64BT 53*, he ca%e to the ,alatian (eo(le, confir%in! the souls of the disci(les, and e#hortin! the% to continue in the faith, and that we %ust throu!h %uch tri ulation enter into the $in!do% of ,od& -6ow, why do you su((ose he chose to s(ea$ on that su :ectC Decause of what he had :ust een throu!h"-6o dou t, he still showed so%e si!ns in his ___________ of that eatin!" Therefore, he thou!ht it necessary to encoura!e the elie0ers, and e#hort the% to continue in the faith&) *+o, we0e seen fro% the <ord of ,od, what that infir%ity of the flesh was" *Dut, what a out the (hrase, *e would ha0e (luc$ed out your own ___________, and ha0e !i0en the% to %eC

PLUC?E+ OUT 9OUR E9ES2 -<hen Paul used this e#(ression, he was usin! another He rew ____________& He wasnt sayin! that there was so%ethin! literally wron! with his eyes" It was an e#(ression of affection and de0otion, %uch li$e we use today& -If I was to say that youd cut off your ri!ht ___________ for %e, that doesnt (ro0e that I ha0e a diseased ri!ht ar%" 5oes itC 6o& I% :ust tryin! to say that you are 54A)T45 to %e" 3nd, thats e#actly the way Paul was usin! this (hase" -*ou see, the Doo$ of ,alatians was written under %uch the sa%e conditions as the Doo$ of +econd -orinthians& 8eli!ious =udai.ers had entered the Pro0ince of ,alatia, and were tryin! to win the (eo(les affection away fro% Paul& (Paul rin!s this out in 4%A. =:1 , :ust two 0erses after he tal$s a out the% (luc$in! out their eyes&) 4ALATIANS =:1 - )h, I $now how $een these %en are to win you o0er, ut their %oti0es are all wron!& They would li$e to see you and %e se(arated alto!ether, and ha0e you all to the%sel0es& -+o, these %en were tryin! to win the (eo(les affection away fro% Paul& 3nd, to so%e e#tent, they had succeeded& +o, Paul writes' I a% afraid of you, lest I ha0e estowed u(on you la our in 0ain& Drethren, I eseech you, e as I a%' for I a% as ye are' ye ha0e not in:ured %e at all& *e $now how throu!h infir%ity of the flesh I (reached the !os(el unto you at the first& 3nd %y te%(tation which was in %y flesh ye des(ised not, nor re:ectedE ut recei0ed %e as an an!el of ,od, e0en as -hrist =esus& *HERE IS THEN THE 7LESSE+NESS 9E SPA?E OFC for I ear you record, that if it had een (ossi le, ye would ha0e (luc$ed out your own eyes and ha0e !i0en the% to %e& (4%A. =:11-18) -an see how Paul was usin! this (hraseC He was sayin!, *ou /+45 to ____________ %e" <hy ha0e you turned on %e nowC

--onclusion' +o, this infir%ity of the flesh was only a te%(orary thin!, that occurred durin! Pauls first %issionary :ourney& In no way, then, can we inter(ret it as ein!, Pauls Thorn in the Flesh&

ANOTHER 5PRO7LE36 SCRIPTURE -4%A%',%." 6:11 is another 0erse which confuses so%e (eo(le& *e see how lar!e a letter I ha0e written unto you with %ine own hand& -+o%e say that this 0erse should ha0e een translated, *e see how <ITH +/-H 238,4 ______________ I write, i%(lyin! that Pauls eyes were so ad, he couldnt read s%all (rint& -Dut, in the ,ree$, the word for letter is the word !ra%%a, and it %eans, a letter, note, e(istle, or oo$& -Its the sa%e word used in 11 Cor. 3:6, when Paul said, The 24TT48 $illeth, ut the s(irit !i0eth life& 6ow, +/842* Paul wasnt referrin! to a sin!le letter of the al(ha et, when he said, the 24TT48 $illeth" (*oud etter watch out for the letter L%, oys, itll $ill you")& -6o& In neither (lace was Paul referrin! to indi0idual letters& He was referrin! to the 4(istles he had written& -+o, he wasnt sayin!, I0e written with lar!e letters, so I could _________"& He was sayin!, I0e written you a len!thy 4(istle" There was nothin! wron! with Pauls eyes& He was healed in 3cts cha(ter nine& Pauls Thorn in the flesh was not sic$ness, it was an an!el sent fro% +atan to stir u( 8eli!ious Persecution&