2 Timothy 4:21
Do thy diligence to come before winter. Eubulus greeteth thee, and Pudens, and Linus, and Claudia, and all the brethren.
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(21) Do thy diligence to come before winter. Probably this was added to hasten his coming. If he delayed, the season of the year would put off, perhaps hinder altogether, his voyage.

Eubulus greeteth thee.—Of this Eubulus nothing is known.

And Pudens, and Linus, and Claudia.—Of these, Linus was, no doubt, the first of the long line of Bishops of Rome. The date of his consecration corresponds with the year of St. Paul’s martyrdom, A.D. 66. We know, from this greeting, he was one of the few “faithful” to his old master.

It is, perhaps, fair to assume, though of course there is no certainty of this, that the consecration of Linus to the government of the Roman Church as its first Bishop was one of the dying acts done by the Apostle Paul.

Some commentators identify the other two with “Pudens and Claudia” mentioned by Martial (Epigrams, iv. 13; xi. 54). Pudens was the son of a Roman senator; to Claudia, Martial gives the name of Rufina, and states she was a Briton. The dates of the Epigrams in question would agree with the identification. It is, however, only a supposition.

4:19-22 We need no more to make us happy, than to have the Lord Jesus Christ with our spirits; for in him all spiritual blessings are summed up. It is the best prayer we can offer for our friends, that the Lord Jesus Christ may be with their spirits, to sanctify and save them, and at last to receive them to himself. Many who believed as Paul, are now before the throne, giving glory to their Lord: may we be followers of them.Do thy diligence; - 2 Timothy 4:9.

To come before winter - Probably because of the dangers of the navigation then, and because the circumstances of the apostle were such as to demand the presence of a friend.

Eubulus, ... - These names are of common occurrence in the works of the classic writers, but of the persons here referred to we know nothing.

21. before winter—when a voyage, according to ancient usages of navigation, would be out of the question: also, Paul would need his "cloak" against the winter (2Ti 4:13).

Pudens … Claudia—afterwards husband and wife (according to Martial [Epigrams, 4.13; 11.54]), he a Roman knight, she a Briton, surnamed Rufina. Tacitus [On Agriculture, 14], mentions that territories in southeast Britain were given to a British king; Cogidunus, in reward for his fidelity to Rome, A.D. 52, while Claudius was emperor. In 1772 a marble was dug up at Chichester, mentioning Cogidunus with the surname Claudius, added from his patron, the emperor's name; and Pudens in connection with Cogidunus, doubtless his father-in-law. His daughter would be Claudia, who seems to have been sent to Rome for education, as a pledge of the father's fidelity. Here she was under the protection of Pomponia, wife of Aulus Plautius, conqueror of Britain. Pomponia was accused of foreign superstitions, A.D. 57 [Tacitus, Annals, 3.32], probably Christianity. She probably was the instrument of converting Claudia, who took the name Rufina from her, that being a cognomen of the Pomponian gens (compare Ro 16:13, Rufus, a Christian). Pudens in Martial and in the Chichester inscription, appears as a pagan; but perhaps he or his friends concealed his Christianity through fear. Tradition represents Timothy, a son of Pudens, as taking part in converting the Britons.

Linus—put third; therefore not at this time yet, as he was afterwards, bishop. His name being here inserted between Pudens and Claudia, implies the two were not yet married. "Eubulus" is identified by some with Aristobulus, who, with his converts, is said to have been among the first evangelists of Britain. Paul himself, says Clement, "visited the farthest west [perhaps Britain, certainly Spain], and was martyred under the rulers at Rome," who were Nero's vicegerents in his absence from the city.

Do thy diligence to come before winter; that is, to come to Rome to me before winter, either because sailing in the winter time would be more dangerous, or because in the winter time he might have more need of assistance.

Eubulus greeteth thee, and Pudens, and Linus, and Claudia, and all the brethren; we have no further account of these persons in holy writ; the first is a Greek name, the rest Latin, Claudia is a woman’s name. Paul sends the respects of these persons, and all the other Christians that at that time were in Rome to Timothy.

Do thy diligence to come before winter,.... When travelling would not be so safe and comfortable: the apostle consults Timothy's good, as well as his own advantage.

Eubulus greeteth thee. Eusebius (k) makes mention of one of this name of Manganaea, who suffered martyrdom with one Adrian at Caesarea; but he cannot be thought to be the same with this, since he suffered in the times of Dioclesian.

And Pudens, and Linus, and Claudia; the first of these is said to be a person of note at Rome, and of the senatorial order, and the father of two pious virgins, Praxis and Pudentiana. He is put among the seventy disciples; See Gill on Luke 10:1. Mention is made by Pliny the younger (l), of Servilius Pudens, a Roman; and Martial, a poet of those times, speaks (m) of the marriage of Pudens and Claudia, and of Aulus Pudens. Linus is said to be the first bishop of Rome after the martyrdom of Peter and Paul (n). Though some will have it, that he was bishop of Rome in the time of Peter, and that he and one Cletus were co-pastors with Peter; and Platina, who wrote the "Lives of the Popes", first makes Peter to consecrate Clement his successor, and to commend the chair, and the church of God, to him, and yet afterwards places Linus, and not Clement, as his immediate successor; yea, puts Cletus also before Clement; so much are the Papists at a loss about, and so little account can they give of the boasted succession of their popes from Peter, that they are not agreed about his immediate successor. This Linus is said to be born at Volterra in Tuscany, and to be of the family of the Moors, whose father was one Herculaneus, who sent him at twenty two years of age to Rome, for the sake of his studies; at which time, as is pretended, Peter came thither, by whom he was converted, and with whom he continued as a fellow helper in the Gospel. He is moreover said to be bishop of Rome ten years, (Platina says eleven,) three months, and twelve days, and to have suffered martyrdom under Saturninus the consul, whose daughter he had delivered from a diabolical possession, and was buried in the Vatican. He is reckoned among the seventy disciples of Christ, but very wrongly; See Gill on Luke 10:1. The name is a Latin one, and is often mentioned by Martial the poet. And Claudia is the name of a woman, very likely of considerable note. Some think she was the wife of Pudens, the same Martial speaks of, and is said to be a Briton.

And all the brethren: that is, of the church of Rome, these all sent greeting to Timothy.

(k) Eccl. Hist. l. 8. de Martyr. Palestin. c. 11. (l) L. 10. Ephesians 10. (m) Epigram. l. 4. Ephesians 10. 23. 1. 6. Ephesians 45. l. 7. Ephesians 10. (n) Iren. adv. Haeres. l. 3. c. 3. Euseb. Ec. Hist. l. 3. c. 2, 4. & l. 5. c. 6.

Do thy diligence to come before winter. Eubulus greeteth thee, and Pudens, and Linus, and Claudia, and all the brethren.
2 Timothy 4:21. Σπούδασον πρὸ χειμῶνος ἐλθεῖν] see 2 Timothy 4:9, ταχέως. Even if πρὸ χειμῶνος is to be connected with ταχέως, it does not follow that the epistle was written just before winter; comp. Introd. § 3. Χειμών may indeed mean the “winter-storm” (Wieseler), but it is more natural here to understand it of the season of the year (Wiesinger). Timothy is to come to the apostle before winter, that the winter might not prevent him from coming soon.

Finally, Paul sent greetings from Eubulus, Pudens, Linus, and Claudia, who are mentioned only here, and from all the Christians in Rome. These are named specially, not as the apostle’s σύνεργοι, but probably because they were personally acquainted with Timothy. Linus is probably the one whom the Fathers name as the first bishop of Rome.

2 Timothy 4:21. πρὸ χειμῶνος: “That thou be not detained,” sc. by storm (Chrys.). This seems less urgent than ταχέως of 2 Timothy 4:9, and we may infer that St. Paul did not expect his final trial to take place for some months.

Εὔβουλος: Nothing else is known of this good man.

Πούδης καὶ Λίνος καὶ Κλαυδία: Light-foot (Apostolic Fathers, part i. vol. i. pp. 76–79) has an exhaustive discussion of the various ingenious theories which, starting with the assumption that Pudens and Claudia were man and wife—a supposition opposed by the order of the names—have identified them with (1) Martial’s congenial friend Aulus Pudens, to whom the poet casually “imputes the foulest vices of heathenism,” and his bride Claudia Rufina, a girl of British race (Epigr. iv. 13, xi. 53), (2) “a doubtful Pudens and imaginary Claudia” who have been evolved out of a fragmentary inscription found at Chichester in 1722. This appears to record the erection of a temple by a Pudens with the sanction of Claudius Cogidubnus, who is probably a British king who might have had a daughter, whom he might have named Claudia, and who might have taken the name Rufina from Pomponia, the wife of Aulus Plautius, the Roman commander in Britain. This last supposition would identify (1) and (2). It should be added that in Const. Apost. vii. 46 she is mother of Linus. See also arts. Claudia and Pudens in Hastings’ D. B.

Linus is identified by Irenæus with the Linus whom SS. Peter and Paul consecrated first Bishop of Rome (Haer. iii. 3). See also art. in Hastings’ D. B.

21. before winter] ‘The motive (rather a motive) of the letter is the desire for Timothy’s presence, Haste! Come! 2 Timothy 4:9Haste to come quickly,” 2 Timothy 4:21Haste to come before winter,” 2 Timothy 4:13 “when thou comest,” 2 Timothy 1:4Yearning to see thee,” 2 Timothy 4:5 “my death is near at hand.” ’ Farrar, Message of the Books, p. 397.

Eubulus] Of him nothing is known.

Pudens … and Claudia] The identity of these two members of the Church at Rome with the Pudens and Claudia of Martial is discussed in Appendix, H.

Linus] According to general testimony bishop of Rome. Cf. Iren. iii. 3, § 3 ‘Peter and Paul, when they founded and built up the church of Rome, committed the office of its episcopate to Linus.’ Cf. also Euseb. H. E. iii. 2 ‘of the church of the Romans after the martyrdom of Paul and Peter the first to be appointed to the office of bishop was Linus, of whom Paul makes mention at the end of his letter to Timothy.’ Eusebius also gives the length of his episcopate as twelve years a.d. 68–80.

2 Timothy 4:21. Πρὸ χειμῶνος, before winter) In former times, during the actual winter, there was almost no sailing; and the martyrdom of Paul was at hand.—ἐλθεῖν, to come) He is invited by the mention of Eubulus, etc., who were with Paul, and were notwithstanding alive [therefore Timothy need not be afraid of his life in coming].—καὶ Λίνος, and Linus) He is put third in order; he was not yet a bishop.

Verse 21. - Saluteth for greeteth, A.V. Do thy diligence (σπούδασον); see ver. 9 and 2 Timothy 2:15, note. Before winter; lest, when winter storms come, it be impossible to do so. St. Paul's longing to have Timothy with him is apparent throughout. Eubulus; mentioned nowhere else. The name is not uncommon as a Greek name, and appears also in the patronymic Eubulides, and the female name Eubule. And Pudens, and Linus, and Claudia. Of these persons Linus is probably the same as is mentioned by Irenaeus and Eusebius as the first Bishop of Rome. Irenaeus (3:111, 3) says, "When the apostles, therefore, had founded the Church (of Rome) they entrusted the office (λειτουργίαν) of the episcopate to Linus, of whom Paul makes mention in his Epistles to Timothy." Eusebius ('Ecc. Hist.,' 3:2) says, "Linus was ordained the first Bishop of Rome (πρῶτος κληροῦται τὴν ἐπισκοπήν) after the martyrdom of Paul and Peter" (see, too, § 4 of the same book). Some identify him with a certain Llin in Welsh hagiography, said to be the son of Caractacus. As regards Pudens and Claudia, nothing is known about them unless the very ingenious and interesting theory of Archdeacon Williams is true, which is necessarily very uncertain. According to this theory, Claudia is the foreign lady, a Briton, whose marriage with Pudens is spoken of by Martial in two epigrams, and who also bore the cognomen of Rufina. It is supposed that she was the daughter of the British king Cogidubnus, the ally of the Romans and of the Roman governor, Aulus Plautius, whose wife Pomponia is said by Tacitus to have been impeached of the crime of embracing a "foreign superstition," which was probably Christianity. Cogidubnus appears by an ancient inscription now at Goodwood to have taken the name of the Emperor Claudius, being called Tiberius Claudius Cogidubnus, which would naturally lead to his daughter being called Claudia. And if further she was adopted by the wife of her father's ally, the name Rufina would be accounted for, as a distinguished branch of the gens Pomponia bore the name of Rufus. And Martial's epigram is addressed to "Rufus," as one interested in the marriage. Claudia may either have learnt Christianity from Pomponia, or may have conveyed the knowledge of the gospel to her. On the other hand, the name of Pudens appears on the Goodwood inscription as having given, while still a heathen, a site for a temple of Neptune and Minerva, which was built "pro salute" of the imperial family under the authority of King Cogidubnus - curiously connecting him with the British king. It is probable that Pudens and Claudia were not yet married. Thus it will be seen that, while this theory is borne out by many coincidences, it cannot by any means be adopted as certain (see Dean Alford's excussus in the 'Proleg. to 2 Timothy;' and Conybeare and Howson's 'Life of St. Paul,' vol. it. p. 501). Lewin ('Life and Epist. of St. Paul,' vol. 2, p. 392) warmly espouses the theory, but hesitates between Caractacus and Cogidubnus as the father of Claudia. Farrar rejects the whole theory "as an elaborate rope of sand" ('Life of St. Paul,' vol. 2, p. 569). If Linus was the son, and Claudia the daughter, of Caractacus, they would be brother and sister. 2 Timothy 4:21Eubulus, Pudens, Linus, Claudia


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