|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
2:19-30 It is best with us, when our duty becomes natural to us. Naturally, that is, sincerely, and not in pretence only; with a willing heart and upright views. We are apt to prefer our own credit, ease, and safety, before truth, holiness, and duty; but Timothy did not so. Paul desired liberty, not that he might take pleasure, but that he might do good. Epaphroditus was willing to go to the Philippians, that he might be comforted with those who had sorrowed for him when he was sick. It seems, his illness was caused by the work of God. The apostle urges them to love him the more on that account. It is doubly pleasant to have our mercies restored by God, after great danger of their removal; and this should make them more valued. What is given in answer to prayer, should be received with great thankfulness and joy.
Verse 20. - For I have no man like-minded; literally, of equal soul (comp. Deuteronomy 13:6, "Thy friend, which is as thine own soul"). "Timotheus,' says Bengel, "is a second Paul: where he is, there you should think that I myself am present." Others, not so well, explain the words, "I have no one like Timothy." The expression must, of course, be limited to those present at the moment, and available for the mission: it cannot in-elude St. Luke. Who will naturally care for your state (ὅστις); such as will care. Naturally (γνησίως: comp. 1 Timothy 1:2, where St. Paul calls Timothy "mine own soul in the faith," γνήσιον τέκνον); with a true, genuine affection. Timothy's love for St. Paul as his spiritual father will inspire him with genuine love for those who were so dear to St. Paul. Care is a strong word, μεριμνήσει, will be anxious (comp. Matthew 6:31).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
For I have no man likeminded,.... With myself; as my soul, so the Syriac version renders it. Timothy had a soul like the apostle's, which none that were with him, besides him, had; he was of the same judgment with him in the doctrines of grace; he received and preached the same Gospel as he did; he preached the same Christ, the Son of God, without yea and nay; he had the same affection for the apostle, and the souls of men, as he had; his soul was knit to his, and they had, as it were, but one soul in two bodies; he was engaged in the same work of the Lord, and pursued it with the same zeal and diligence: he was a second Paul in the pulpit; and there was no man likeminded as he, or so well disposed to the Philippians as he was, that had their good and cause at heart, and was willing to take so long a journey to do them service; for he had a particular affection for them, having been among them with the apostle, when he first preached the Gospel to them:
who will naturally care for your state. There were none like him that would; many were like the shepherds of Israel, that fed themselves and not the flock; but he was one that was diligent to know the state of the flock, and looked well to the herd under his care; and had an anxious care and solicitude, as the word signifies, for the good of souls. The work of a faithful Gospel minister is a work of care; one of his characteristics is, that he cares for the church of God; and though anxious care in worldly things is forbidden, yet in the affairs of Christ's house it is highly commendable, and especially when it is natural, or genuine and sincere, as Timothy's was: he had a sincere love, an hearty and real concern for their good; and which he would show by delivering to them the sincere milk of the word, by preaching the Gospel in the power and purity of it, with all sincerity and uprightness, with a single eye to the glory of Christ, and the good of their souls; and which is the apostle's reason for sending him unto them.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
20. His reason for sending Timothy above all others: I have none so "like-minded," literally, "like-souled," with myself as is Timothy. Compare De 13:6, "Thy friend which is as thine own soul" (Ps 55:14). Paul's second self.
naturally—Greek, "genuinely"; "with sincere solicitude." A case wherein the Spirit of God so changed man's nature, that to be natural was with him to be spiritual: the great point to be aimed at.
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