- What does God prefer, Sacrifice or Obedience? -


Use the Holy Scriptures to answer this question.


Are you Catholic? The Catholic Church does not rely on Sacred Scripture alone to determine what God might prefer. We also have Tradition and the Magisterium. Every Catholic is required to be obedient and submissive to the Supreme Pontiff, Pope Francis and the Magisterium. We do not have a democracy.


For an understanding of both scripture and Tradition, 2 Thess 2:15
For Church authority Mt 18:17.
For what God is looking for, check Acts 2:42.


For it is mercy that I desire, not sacrifice,
and knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings Hosea 6:6


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Matt 9:13
Hosea 6:6

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I would also cite Psalm 51:16-17. God values contrition over sacrifice. How much more then would he value not sinning in the first place!

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I’d say obedience is the sacrifice God commands. Obedience, after all, is nothing more than consent to living the divine life, which is the state for which God was pleased to create us. How should we please God, except to become all that God, in His great love, intended us to be when we were created? He made us to be saints; how could God be bought off with anything else?

But the gift is not like the transgression. For if by that one person’s transgression the many died, how much more did the grace of God and the gracious gift of the one person Jesus Christ overflow for the many. And the gift is not like the result of the one person’s sinning. For after one sin there was the judgment that brought condemnation; but the gift, after many transgressions, brought acquittal. For if, by the transgression of one person, death came to reign through that one, how much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of justification come to reign in life through the one person Jesus Christ. In conclusion, just as through one transgression condemnation came upon all, so through one righteous act acquittal and life came to all. For just as through the disobedience of one person the many were made sinners, so through the obedience of one the many will be made righteous. Rom 5:15-21


Do you not know that if you present yourselves to someone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness? But thanks be to God that, although you were once slaves of sin, you have become obedient from the heart to the pattern of teaching to which you were entrusted. Freed from sin, you have become slaves of righteousness. I am speaking in human terms because of the weakness of your nature. For just as you presented the parts of your bodies as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness for lawlessness, so now present them as slaves to righteousness for sanctification. For when you were slaves of sin, you were free from righteousness. But what profit did you get then from the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. But now that you have been freed from sin and have become slaves of God, the benefit that you have leads to sanctification, and its end is eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Rom 6:16-23


They promise them freedom, though they themselves are slaves of corruption, for a person is a slave of whatever overcomes him. For if they, having escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of [our] Lord and savior Jesus Christ, again become entangled and overcome by them, their last condition is worse than their first. For it would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment handed down to them. What is expressed in the true proverb has happened to them, “The dog returns to its own vomit,” and “A bathed sow returns to wallowing in the mire.” 2 Pet 2:19-22


I say this, however, in the understanding that because obedience requires grace and grace requires trust in God, which is to say faith, there is no true obedience without faith. To attempt to be obedient without faith would be to presume that we do not need divine power to live the divine life. We have to recognize the necessity of grace and therefore we must have faith in order to be obedient.


Why the limitation to scripture?


Always great to take our questions to scripture, such great answers can be found there and I always love looking through scripture as ways to answer CAF questions. Here are some verses I have found that really get to the heart of your question, God does not want sacrifice, and prefers mercy. For the exact answer you are looking for, look at the last verse I put, 1 Samuel 15:22

You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.

  • Psalm 51:16

”For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings.”

  • Hosea 6:6

”First he said, “Sacrifices and offerings, burnt offerings and sin offerings you did not desire, nor were you pleased with them”–though they were offered in accordance with the law.”

  • Hebrews 10:8

”But Samuel replied:

“Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices
as much as in obeying the Lord?
To obey is better than sacrifice,
and to heed is better than the fat of rams.”

  • 1 Samuel 15:22

If you would like anymore verses, please just let me know and I will look to procure some more for you :slightly_smiling_face:


He prefers a ‘Beloved Son’ (“With you I AM well pleased”), a Beloved Son who does not count equality with his Father, with God, a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. (You can find that description of a person who most highly pleased our Father in Heaven in a book in the Bible called “Philippians” - a letter of an Apostle of Jesus named Paul.

He prefers that people be converted and baptized and taught and who are understanding of themselves as beloved children of Jesus’ Father, he prefers people who humble themselves like their spiritual Mother, Mary, saying, “Behold the servant of the LORD; I will conform my being and doing according to your will, and I will leave it to You to look to any needs I may have.”

John Martin

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