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What did Paul mean when he said 'this man' heard inexpressable things that 'no one is permitted to tell?'

Was Paul prohibited? Is talking about heaven always prohibited? For what particular reason?

2 Corinthians 12:4

NKJV - 4 How he was caught up into Paradise and heard inexpressible words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.

Clarify Share Report Asked June 18 2016 Mini Anonymous

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Mini Tim Maas Retired Quality Assurance Specialist with the U.S. Army
I have never studied New Testament Greek, but my understanding from various commentaries on this verse that are available online is that the Greek phrase translated as "which it is not lawful for man to utter" can also convey the idea of being inexpressible, or beyond the power of mere words to convey (at least to listeners in this world who did not share in the beatific vision that Paul received), rather than reflecting any kind of actual prohibition being placed on Paul to prevent him from telling what he had seen or heard.

Other commentaries suggest that Paul did not share his vision because it was intended for him alone -- to fortify him for the specific trials that he would face in his upcoming career as an evangelist; and because God had provided to humanity everything necessary to know in regard to receiving eternal life through Christ, and what that life in His presence would be like (especially when John's vision in Revelation is added to the Gospels).

June 18 2016 0 responses Vote Up Share Report


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