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It took me by surprise that Paul sounds very certain that Satan blocked him from coming back to Thessalonica. How could he know that? And how do we know, from the scriptures, that he is not just passing the blame to Satan?

But since we were torn away from you, brothers, for a short time, in person not in heart, we endeavored the more eagerly and with great desire to see you face to face, because we wanted to come to you—I, Paul, again and again—but Satan hindered us. (1 Thessalonians 2:17-18, ESV)

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While I cannot tell you what any particular denomination believes about that particular phrase, I can give you some insight from the Bible itself.

When Paul wrote the letters to Thessalonica he was under house arrest in Rome because of his request to be heard by Caesar;

Acts 25:11 KJV

For if I be an offender, or have committed any thing worthy of death, I refuse not to die: but if there be none of these things whereof these accuse me, no man may deliver me unto them. I appeal unto Caesar.

Paul considered his situation to be caused by Satan, and this was most likely the reason behind his saying that he was hindered by Satan.

Prior to his arrest in Jerusalem it was Paul's intention to continue his church building in the world of the Gentiles.

Act 22:17 and 18 KJV

17 And it came to pass, that, when I was come again to Jerusalem, even while I prayed in the temple, I was in a trance;

18 And saw him saying unto me, Make haste, and get thee quickly out of Jerusalem: for they will not receive thy testimony concerning me.

Acts 22:21 KJV

And he said unto me, Depart: for I will send thee far hence unto the Gentiles.

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As John MacArthur said in a recent radio broadcast, Satan and his minions are involved 24/7/365 in doing whatever is in their power to "kill, steal, and destroy" what God is doing in the world through His church and through the servants of His church.

Paul, being as he was on the cusp of doing great things for God by reaching out to the Gentiles with the redemptive message of the Gospel, was not immune from Satanic and demonic hindrances, and if Paul said "Satan hindered us," he was neither copping out nor engaging in the "blame game," but was rather stating a fact.

Satan and his demons and their ways are devious, evil, implacable, insidious, corrupt, immoral, crafty, wily, and much too powerful for even the most spiritual of believers to go "head to head" with them. Moreover, any attempt to "dabble" in the occult is perhaps almost as dangerous as attempting to engage occult forces in combat, which Paul was wise not to do.

The best we can do as believers is to put on the complete armor of God and simply stand against Satan in the power with which God supplies us (Ephesians 6:10 ff.). Prayer, too, can often be effective, particularly when combined with fasting (see Matthew 17:21 and Mark 9:29).

Perhaps God has gifted some of His servants with the gift and responsibility to cast out demons. Back to John MacArthur for a moment, he tells of a time when he came into the presence of a person who was demonized, and the demons communicated with John, telling him they knew who he was and that they wanted him to leave. From that one experience alone, John realized he was out-classed and out-gunned by the devil's demons, and he refused to engage them in battle. The wise man that he is, he, like Michael the archangel who disputed with the devil regarding the body of Moses, said simply, "The Lord rebuke you" and left the scene (see Jude, vv.9,10). We would be wise to do the same, unless God has called us to a ministry of what the Roman Catholic church calls exorcism. In the New Testament it is called simply "casting out demons" (see the list here).

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