But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me has flourished again; wherein you were also careful…
They had revived, he says, or more exactly — for the figure is taken from the beautiful burst of spring — they had, like a tree long bare and frost bound, put forth new sprouts and shoots under the genial influence of God's rain and sun shine; they had thus sprouted and germinated afresh, after a season of apparent deadness, in their care or thought for him. But no sooner has he written the word than he feels, with that quickness and delicacy of perception which is one of the great charms of his character, that the expression may seem to involve a reproach for the lateness or tardiness of their offering; and therefore he adds instantly, that he knows that they had all along been thinking and caring for him, and had only wanted the opportunity of actually showing and proving it. For this he rejoiced in the Lord. Their kindness had given him a pleasure, not as a man only, but as a Christian. And he goes on to tell them why.
Parallel VersesKJV: But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again; wherein ye were also careful, but ye lacked opportunity.