2 Timothy 1:4 MEANING

2 Timothy 1:4
(4) Greatly desiring to see thee.--In view of that violent death which, at this time a close prisoner, he saw was imminent, the memory, too, of the tears of his friend made him long yet more earnestly to see him once again on earth.

Being mindful of thy tears.--Shed probably by Timothy when his aged master had last taken leave of him. It is likely that the clouds of danger which were gathering thickly round St. Paul towards the close of his career had oppressed the brave-hearted Apostle with a foreboding of coming evil, and had invested the last parting with Timothy with circumstances of unusual solemnity. St. Paul had affected others besides Timothy with the same great love, so that tears were shed by strong men when he bade them farewell. (See the account of the leave-taking of the Ephesian elders at Miletus, Acts 20:37-38--"And they all wept sore, and fell on Paul's neck, and kissed him, sorrowing most of all for the words which he spake, that they should see his face no more.")

There is no necessity for Hofmann's singular, but rather far-fetched, theory here that the tears were simply an expression for Timothy's intense sorrow at hearing of the Apostle's arrest and close imprisonment, which sorrow St. Paul was made acquainted with in a letter. The tears, according to Hofmann, were those "welche Timotheus brieflich geweint hat."

That I may be filled with joy.--When he meets Timothy again.

Verse 4. - Longing for greatly desiring, A.V.; remembering for being mindful of, A.V.

1:1-5 The promise of eternal life to believers in Christ Jesus, is the leading subject of ministers who are employed according to the will of God. The blessings here named, are the best we can ask for our beloved friends, that they may have peace with God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord. Whatever good we do, God must have the glory. True believers have in every age the same religion as to substance. Their faith is unfeigned; it will stand the trial, and it dwells in them as a living principle. Thus pious women may take encouragement from the success of Lois and Eunice with Timothy, who proved so excellent and useful a minister. Some of the most worthy and valuable ministers the church of Christ has been favoured with, have had to bless God for early religious impressions made upon their minds by the teaching of their mothers or other female relatives.Greatly desiring to see thee,.... In his former epistle he had desired him to stay at Ephesus, there being some work for him to do, which made it necessary he should continue; but now having answered the apostle's purpose, and he standing in need of him at Rome, being without any assistant there, some having left him, and others were left by him in other places, and others were sent by him elsewhere; and it having been some time since he saw Timothy, he longed for a sight of him:

being mindful of thy tears; shed either at the afflictions and sufferings of the apostle, of which Timothy, being his companion, was an eyewitness, and he being of a truly Christian sympathizing spirit, wept with those that wept; or at their parting from each other, as in Acts 20:37

that I may be filled with joy; at the sight of him, and not at the remembrance of his tears; for the last clause is to be read in a parenthesis, and these words stand not connected with that, but with the preceding part of the text. The apostle intimates, that a sight of his dearly beloved son Timothy would fill him with joy amidst all his troubles and afflictions he endured for the Gospel: this is an instance of hearty, sincere, and strong affection.

Courtesy of Open Bible