I ·want [desire; delight in] ·faithful love [mercy; lovingkindness] ·more than I want animal sacrifices [L and not sacrifice]. I want ·people to know me [the knowledge of God] more than I want burnt offerings [Lev. 1:1–17].
“What am I to do with you, Ephraim? What do I make of you, Judah? Your declarations of love last no longer than morning mist and predawn dew. That’s why I use prophets to shake you to attention, why my words cut you to the quick: To wake you up to my judgment blazing like light. I’m after love that lasts, not more religion. I want you to know God, not go to more prayer meetings. You broke the covenant—just like Adam! You broke faith with me—ungrateful wretches!
For I would mercy, and not sacrifice, and I would the knowing of God, more than burnt sacrifices. (For I desire love, and not sacrifices, yea, I desire the knowing of God, more than any burnt sacrifices.)
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