TOO FAMILIAR WITH GOD? (2)
2 Cor 12:6-7 ► For though I would desire to glory, I shall not be a fool; for I will say the truth: but now I forbear, lest any man should think of me above that which he seeth me to be, or that he heareth of me.
And 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.
Insight and Highlight
Gal 6:3 ► For if a man think himself to be something when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself.
Every highly reverenced child of God must never see any man's expressed exaltation of him as anyone but nothing before God.
We must never think of any man higher than what God permits for Him.
Though honor is due to whom honor is due and though we do not know at what boundary the man of honor is before God, it is humility if the person to whom over-indulgent honor is ascribed to humble himself before God.
Paul saw a vision of a man who was caught up in the third heaven, into paradise, who had unspeakable words not lawful for a man to utter.
Paul was glad of the knowledge of such an uncommon being that he would gladly glory in.
Paul, however, had nothing to glory for but in his infirmities, ref 2 Cor 12:4-5.
He, however, was very careful so as not to boast or glory through this abundance of revelation given him or better still, he was restrained from boasting over this.
In order not to boast of the abundance of the revelations he received of this man, he said there was given to him a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet him lest he should be exalted above measure.
He besought God three times but God will not heal him but would leave the infirmities in his body saying His grace will be sufficient for Paul.
For the rest of his life Paul carried the infirmities living with the confession:
"....for my strength is made perfect in weakness.".... "Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities,..."... "....for when I am weak, then am I strong....", ref 2 Cor 12: 7-12.
Why did God deal with Paul this way?
Every child of God must be careful.
One may not say Paul's humble experience with God in 2 Cor 12 was as a result of pride known to us but one may adduce that God knew Paul's experience of the abundant revelations would make him boastful.
Scripture shows, Paul was boastful, 1 Cor 11:1. His boasting was not raw as prevalent as we have it today.
Though his boastings were mostly in the Lord, we can take the cue that God weighs all we say by word and heart.
Paul said in 2 Cor 12:7 ► "...even though I have received such wonderful revelations from God. So to keep me from becoming proud, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger from Satan to torment me and keep me from becoming proud.
It looked Paul had some issues with personal gratification. He said the people had made him as such, he wished the commendation of the people. In 2 Cor 12: 11, he said, ► l am become a fool in glorying; ye have compelled me: for I ought to have been commended of you: for in nothing am I behind the very chiefest apostles, though I will be nothing.
Paul had early commended himself:
2 Cor 11:5 ► For I consider that I am not at all inferior to the most eminent apostles.
He had retorted, though all by the grace of God that he had "....laboured more abundantly than they all:..."► 1 Cor 15:10.
Paul had previously said how he began ministry without seeing any of the disciples that had been with Jesus except for Peter whom he saw after three years later, ref Gal 1:12, 18.
Paul had also earlier remarked he spoke in tongues more than any other in 1Cor 14:18.
It must be said the Apostle, though not undermining the use of tongues, was only encouraging the use of tongue with caution, not for self-edification but to the common understanding and edification of the church, 1 Cor 14:4-6.
Paul's respects are mingled with reproof. It seemed his remarks were made out of some people who were comparing him with the "highly esteemed". Those who were before him, ref Gal 2:2,6.
The Apostle spoke with a certain amount of irony, though with respect but largely carefree. In Gal 2:6, he said ': whatsoever they were,...."
Paul would finally, after his humble experience in 2 Cor 12:11 said "...for in nothing am I behind the very chiefest apostles, though I be nothing. (compare to 1 Cor 15:10, 2 Cor
People made him upset for Christ's sake. O foolish Galatians...► Gal 6:1. Comp to Moses' remark in Numb 20:10.
Paul was a man of the Holy Spirit. It is of no doubt to say, God saw something that necessitated humbling and resisting the Apostle.
Our resentments, heated arguments, anger, etc do not bring about or produce the righteousness God desires.
We must always remember the word of Apostle James in admonition, James 1:20 ► For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.
Call to Word action
1 Cor 3:18 ► Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise.
The Christian clarion duty
2 Cor 12:1 ► I must go on boasting. Although there is nothing to gain,....,"
Lord, help me. Psalm 19:14 ► Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer", in Jesus name.
Good morning all and have a blessed day.
God bless you.