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The Apostle Paul And Compelling Behavior

Paul was originally called Saul and was a notorious persecutor of Christians until confronted with God along the path to Damascus: And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven: And he dropped to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? (Acts 9:3-4) Saul turned from persecuting Christians to become among the best Christian apostles. He became the st. paul the apostle. Most individuals chosen by God for special service possessed some human frailty which made them unlikely candidates for the vision ahead. Moses, as an example, had a talk impediment: I am slow of speech, and of the slow tongue. (Exodus 4:10) Paul had no clear frailty. He was actually a solid, effective, decisive, enthusiastic persecutor of Christians. Incredibly, when God chose him for the important goal of spreading the gospel to the Gentiles, He gave a weakness: to Paul And lest I should be exalted above measure through the variety of the facts, there is directed at me a thorn in the skin, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. (II Corinthians 12:7) That thorn in the skin can reveal pain brought on by some actual problem. However, it could also indicate pain caused by some emotional problem. In as a temptation: Galatians, Paul explains his infirmity And my temptation which was within my flesh ye despised not, nor rejected; but received me as an angel of God, at the same time as Christ Jesus. (Galatians 4:14) Consider the following line published by Paul: For that which I do I allow not: for what I'd, that do I not; but what I hate, that I do. (Romans 7:15) Evaluate that line with the meaning of 'coercion' as utilized in psychology: Compulsion: a powerful generally irresistible impulse to perform an act that's despite the will of the matter. Was Paul addicted to some compulsion? Somebody experiencing a compulsive behavior disorder will recognize themselves in Romans 7:15 as quoted above. That's, what they want to do, stop

the compulsive behavior, they do not. What they do not want to do, the compulsive behavior, they do. Most, if not all, addicts need to stop. Many cycle through periods of pleasure followed by fits of shame and despair. The shame and depression results from their addictive behavior. They're disappointed in themselves that they couldn't resist once more! Sooner or later, what do they believe will make them 'happy' again? The compulsive behavior. So they really cycle. Did Paul suffer from guilt? In fact, there have been times when he considered himself to be the worst person on the earth: There is a faithful saying, and worth all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came in to the world to save your self sinners; which I'm chief. (I Timothy 1:15) Paul might have been an alcoholic, a womanizer, or something much more serious, if indeed he suffered from some compulsion. Whether compulsive behavior or even a shape, Paul prayed three times for God to remove it: For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it may depart from me. (II Corinthians 12:8) Explaining his problem as a 'point' or 'it' further shows that Paul might have had a psychological problem. A physical ailment is generally combined with obvious symptoms including bleeding, physical suffering, rashes, temperature, vomiting, problem, an such like. These are obvious conditions which we can see. However, intellectual issues may not have associated physical symptoms. A serial-killer can take place perfectly normal in appearance. Consequently, we find problems better to explain as compared to mental problems. Emotional problems are difficult to grasp because we cannot 'see' them. Therefore, we explain these issues as abnormalities, things, strange, crazy, and so on. He then made a fantastic discovery that will be today section of all twelve step treatment programs, if Paul did indeed have problems with a compulsion. That discovery was that he wasn't sufficiently powerful to avoid the behavior on his own. He needed help from the higher power! For that reason, he prayed to God 3 x asking that it be taken off him. While God refused to get rid of Paul's thorn, he thought that there was no temptation, no matter how strong, that God did not also provide an escape from that temptation: There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it. (I Corinthians 10:13) Whatever Paul's thorn in the flesh was, God refused to remove it. Consequently, Paul learned to take pleasure in his infirmities: With this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is enough for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly for that reason will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ might rest upon me. Consequently I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in essentials, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I'm weak, then am I strong. (II Corinthians 12:8-10)

More details is available on this site. Paul's escape from his attraction was the recognition that his weakness made him a stronger witness for Jesus. Thus St. Paul found really get pleasure from his infirmities. He understood that God made him weak so that others could see what God could accomplish through such a weak person! Regardless of how weak on account of physical or emotional problems, we are all here for grounds. Never, ever think that you are too weak to meet your vision! The weaker you're, the more spectacular your accomplishment may be for God's glory. Never think that you are alone, if you suffer with compulsive behavior. Locate a twelve step rehabilitation team and you'll be astonished by the group's size and helpfulness! Speaking of teams, how did other Christians of his day react to Paul's attraction? Ye know how through infirmity of the flesh I preached the gospel unto you at the first. And my temptation that has been in my own flesh ye despised not, nor rejected; but received me as an angel of God, even as Christ Jesus. (Galatians 4:13-14)