Matthew 9:13 – Substance, Not Mechanics

Matthew 9:13
13
But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

“But go ye and learn what that meaneth.”  What’s the lesson that Jesus wants the Pharisees to learn?  That God desires “mercy, and not sacrifice”; but what does that mean and how does it affect us?  It means that God is not interested in the trappings of religion at the expense of the truth of religion.  God takes no pleasure in and gives no reward to those who simply go through the motions.  Two people can both go to church, read the Bible, put money in the offering plate and we may think that they look the same on the outside “for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7)  God is not interested in people who want to act godly, only those who want to live godly.

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