Posts Tagged ‘hebrew culture’

Paul’s Thorn in the flesh

August 3, 2012

What was Paul’s thorn in the flesh? It’s a well kept secret in the church – don’t want too much truth out there spoiling our religion.

We say you’re a pain in the neck. That doesn’t mean discomfort just above the shoulders. In England we say for heavy rain ‘it’s raining cats and dogs’. 1000 years from now some historian may think that we used to have literal dogs and cats falling from the sky!

It’s in the Hebrew culture..

Num 33:55-56
But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then those of them whom you let remain shall be as barbs in your eyes and thorns in your sides, and they shall trouble you in the land where you dwell.
Judg 2:3
I will not drive them out before you, but they shall become thorns in your sides, and their gods shall be a snare to you.

Both talking about a people group who are your enemy causing trouble.

So it’s clear that thorn in the flesh or thorn in the side is a Hebrew saying, not to be understood literally.

If we accept that Paul’s thorn in the flesh was a people group who were his enemy it seems clear to me that this was what he called the circumcision party. The religious Jews who were infiltrating the church to bring it back to having to obey Jewish laws.

God said He wouldn’t stop that religious spirit in the church. He wants us to fight it. Why you may ask? Well, Jesus never cast out a religious spirit. He cast out every other kind, but not that. Actually, Satan’s fall when He was Lucifer was a religious fall – he wanted to be worshipped along side God.

Adam and Eve’s fall was also religious. They had been made already like God, but the temptation was that if they ate the fruit they’d BECOME like God. So they wanted by their own works to become that which God had already made them, which is at the heart of religion.