12:7 a thorn. Many possibilities have been suggested for this “thorn,” such as a physical ailment of some sort (“in the flesh”), a harassing demon (“a messenger of Satan”), or the constant harassment of Jewish persecutors. Throughout the history of the church no agreement has been reached among hundreds of commentators. As it stands, the “thorn” of Paul’s experiences is readily applied to a variety of trials faced in this life. Few of God’s servants have been free from at least some kind of hindrance, weakness, or opposition.