God delights in obedience

Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices,
as in obeying the voice of the Lord?
Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice,
and to listen than the fat of rams.—1 Samuel 15

John Piper, in a sermon, “The Pleasure of God in Obedience”, comments on 1 Samuel 15:22-

God’s delight in obedience is good news because the obedience he loves is the obedience of faith. And faith means banking our hope on the mercy of God. And mercy means that our obedience does not have to be perfect; it only has to be penitent. “If you confess your sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive your sins and cleanse you from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

God is still a mountain spring and not a watering trough. Obedience is not a bucket brigade to fill his need. Obedience is the irrepressible “public relations” efforts of those who have tasted and seen that the Lord is good.


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