For I desire mercy and not sacrifice, and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings (Hosea 6:6).
The prophet Hosea was urging Israel to return to the LORD. Israel had been unfaithful just like Hosea’s wife had been unfaithful. “My people ask counsel from their wooden idols” (Hosea 3:12). They had rejected the knowledge of God (Hosea 3:6). They broke all restraint by swearing and lying and killing and stealing and committing adultery (Hosea 4:2). Sacrifice and burnt offerings are worthless without mercy and knowledge of God. Vain worship (Matt 15:8-9) is prevalent today because people have no knowledge of God’s laws and choose to worship their way instead of God’s way. Grow in knowledge (2 Pet 1:5-7; 3:18).