Go and learn what this means, “I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.” - Matthew 9:13
What does this command mean to us who no longer live in a world of elaborate animal sacrifice that could substitute for the desires of the heart? Jesus knew that His contemporaries would live to see their Temple destroyed by Roman armies. He wanted them to know that while their worship there would end, their relationship to God was measured by something deeper, by their ability to respond to each other’s needs.
This command is challenging enough for much prayer as we seek to become the disciples Jesus needs.