2 Corinthians 12:2,4,7a..2 I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago—whether in the body I do not know, or out of the body I do not know, God knows—such a man… 4b heard inexpressible words, which a man is not permitted to speak. 7a-c Because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, for this reason, to keep me from exalting myself, there was given me a thorn in the flesh,
The man in v.2 was Paul. Paul was referring to a revelation near the end of his time in Tarsus.
[After his miraculous salvation Paul went into Arabia to receive the knowledge of Jesus and the gospel directly. Then after 3 years he went to Jerusalem, then to Tarsus and finally Paul was brought to Antioch by Barnabas after 43AD. Barnabas went to Antioch in 43AD. The revelation occurred, “14 years ago”, about 43AD since 2 Corinthians was written in 57AD. [Acts 9:26-30,11:22-26, Timeline]]
Paul could not describe how he received this revelation and was not permitted to speak of it because of its greatness. Paul’s soul was eternally alive but lived in a sinful body just like believers today. Therefore God knowing Paul was subject to the temptation of exalting himself “there was given me a thorn in the flesh,” to keep him humble and totally dependent on Jesus. [2 Corinthians 12:7-10, for 9 reasons for troubles in your life click here]
Are any of your troubles “thorns in the flesh” to keep you humble? If so are you being bitter – Temporal or thankful – Eternal?
Henry Luke 5/24/2018
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