|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
22:34-40 An interpreter of the law asked our Lord a question, to try, not so much his knowledge, as his judgment. The love of God is the first and great commandment, and the sum of all the commands of the first table. Our love of God must be sincere, not in word and tongue only. All our love is too little to bestow upon him, therefore all the powers of the soul must be engaged for him, and carried out toward him. To love our neighbour as ourselves, is the second great commandment. There is a self-love which is corrupt, and the root of the greatest sins, and it must be put off and mortified; but there is a self-love which is the rule of the greatest duty: we must have a due concern for the welfare of our own souls and bodies. And we must love our neighbour as truly and sincerely as we love ourselves; in many cases we must deny ourselves for the good of others. By these two commandments let our hearts be formed as by a mould.
Verse 38. - The first and great commandment; or better, the great and first commandment; Vulgate, Hoc est maximum et primum mandatum. Here was a plain answer to the question of the scribe, which no one could gainsay (comp. Luke 10:27). They who repeated daily in their devotions, "Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord" (see Mark), could not help acknowledging that love of him whom they thus confessed was the chief duty of man - one which was superior to every other obligation.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
This is the first and great commandment. Whether the object of it is considered, who is the first and chief good; or the manner in which it is to be observed, which requires and engrosses the whole heart, soul, and mind, and all the strength and power of man; or its being the principle from whence all the duties, and actions of men should flow, and the end to which all are to be referred; and is not only a compendium of the duties of the first table of the decalogue, but of all others that can be thought to, and do, belong to God. This is the first command in order of nature, time, dignity, and causality; God being the first cause of all things, infinitely above all creatures, and love to him being the source, spring and cause of love to the neighbour; and it is the greatest in its object, nature, manner, and end. That this command, and these words our Lord cites, are so full and comprehensive, the Jews themselves cannot deny. A noted writer of their's (x) says,
"the root of "all the commandments" is, when a man loves God with all his soul, and cleaves unto him.
And, says (y) another,
"in this verse only, "thou shalt love the Lord thy God", &c,
, "the ten words, or decalogue, are comprehended".
(x) Aben Ezra in Exodus 31.18. (y) Tzeror Hammor, fol. 138. 1.
Matthew 22:38 Parallel Commentaries
Matthew 22:38 NIV
Matthew 22:38 NLT
Matthew 22:38 ESV
Matthew 22:38 NASB
Matthew 22:38 KJV
Bible Hub: Online Parallel Bible