Adam Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

Verse 19 (Matthew 19:19)

Honour thy father and thy mother - σου thy, is omitted by almost every MS. of respectability.

Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself - Self-love, as it is generally called, has been grievously declaimed against, even by religious people, as a most pernicious and dreadful evil. But they have not understood the subject on which they spoke. They have denominated that intense propensity which unregenerate men feel to gratify their carnal appetites and vicious passions, self-love; whereas it might be more properly termed self-hatred or self-murder. If I am to love my neighbor as myself and this "love worketh no ill to its neighbor," then self-love, in the sense in which our Lord uses it, is something excellent. It is properly a disposition essential to our nature, and inseparable from our being, by which we desire to be happy, by which we seek the happiness we have not, and rejoice in it when we possess it. In a word, it is a uniform wish of the soul to avoid all evil, and to enjoy all good. Therefore, he who is wholly governed by self-love, properly and Scripturally speaking, will devote his whole soul to God, and earnestly and constantly seek all his peace, happiness, and salvation in the enjoyment of God. But self-love cannot make me happy. I am only the subject which receives the happiness, but am not the object that constitutes this happiness; for it is that object, properly speaking, that I love, and love not only for its own sake, but also for the sake of the happiness which I enjoy through it. "No man," saith the apostle, "ever hated his own flesh." But he that sinneth against God wrongeth his own soul, both of present and eternal salvation, and is so far from being governed by self-love that he is the implacable enemy of his best and dearest interests in both worlds.

- Adam Clarke's Commentary on the Bible