Wow, oh wow, oh wow! Frank Viola’s blog post on Beyond Evangelical: Rethinking Paul’s Thorn in the Flesh.
Here’s a sample:
In the Old Testament, the term “thorn” is used as a metaphor for a person or group that persecutes God’s people …
When we read the New Testament in a narrative way, taking it in its chronological sequence, we discover that everywhere Paul planted a church, a group of detractors opposed his ministry and sought to discredit his apostolic authority in the eyes of the Christians for which he cared.
In Galatians, Paul indicates that this group of detractors was headed up by one man in particular …
Putting all of this together, an interesting picture emerges.
Paul’s thorn appears to be a man (inspired by Satan) who was obsessed with discrediting Paul and his ministry.