I must go on boasting.1 Although there is nothing to be gained, I will go on to visions and revelations2 from the Lord.
I know a man in Christ3 who fourteen years ago was caught up4 to the third heaven.5 Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know--God knows.63
And I know that this man--whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, but God knows--
was caught up7 to paradise.8 He heard inexpressible things, things that man is not permitted to tell.
I will boast about a man like that, but I will not boast about myself, except about my weaknesses.96
Even if I should choose to boast,10 I would not be a fool,11 because I would be speaking the truth. But I refrain, so no one will think more of me than is warranted by what I do or say.
To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations,12 there was given me a thorn in my flesh,13 a messenger of Satan,14 to torment me.
Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me.159
But he said to me, "My grace16 is sufficient for you, for my power17 is made perfect in weakness.18"19 Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.
That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight20 in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships,21 in persecutions,22 in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.23