The rather to do this - That is, pray for us, that, being enabled to complete the work which God has given us here to do, we may be the sooner enabled to visit you. It is evident, from this, that the people to whom this epistle was written knew well who was the author of it; nor does there appear, in any place, any design in the writer to conceal his name, and how the epistle came to lack a name it is impossible to say. I have sometimes thought that a part of the beginning might have been lost, as it not only begins without a name, but begins very abruptly.
That I may be restored to you the sooner - It is here clearly implied that the writer was deterred from visiting them by some adverse circumstances over which he had no control. This might be either by imprisonment, or sickness, or the want of a convenient opportunity of reaching them. The probability is, judging particularly from the statement in Hebrews 13:23, that he was then a prisoner, and that his detention was on that account; see Introduction, section 4 (6). The language here is such as Paul would use on the supposition that he was then a prisoner at Rome, and this is a slight circumstance going to show the probability that the Epistle was composed by him.