CHICAGO, IL - Researchers at a top Christian university Friday revealed a stunning find, as linguistic scholars have at long last pinpointed the ambiguous phrase "thorn in my flesh" used by Paul in his second letter to the Corinthians to be a reference to the seasonal pop ballad "Last Christmas" by English pop duo Wham!.
Biblical commentators have been divided on the phrase for years, with many surmising it was some kind of physical ailment, and others supposing that it was a personal struggle with sin.
But the new theory that it was in fact Wham!'s "Last Christmas" playing on repeat makes perfect sense, according to Bible scholars.
"Ridiculous lyrics, repetitive synth melody, George Michael's voice, the fact that it's played nonstop for a full month every year - it has all the required elements of a messenger of Satan sent to torment the Apostle. It's definitely something that you'd beg the Lord to depart from you three times, anyway," Dr. Robert Percival, head of the school's New Testament program, said in a press conference Friday.
"Dang it, now it's in my head again. Ugh," he added.
Dr. Percival further stated that a newly unearthed letter fragment dated to the mid-first century assisted in cracking the code of the opaque phrase. "Everywhere I go, that blasted song is on - everywhere," the author, assumed to be Paul, wrote in the scathing missive. "There's never any good classic Christmas hymns playing. The song's not even about Christmas, for crying out loud - it just mentions the holiday in passing!"
"Please, Lord, make it stop!" he added.