– 1 Samuel 15:22
I heard one old time preacher say that the road to hell is paved with good intentions, and I see what he means. Good intentions are not enough. God told King Saul to destroy everything the Amalekites had, but Saul kept back the choice livestock and then made an excuse that he was going to use it to sacrifice to God, but Samuel said, “to obey is better than sacrifice,” so as a result of Saul’s disobedience, he lost the throne of Israel (1st Sam 15).
I remember hearing a man talk about how much he gave to God and that he would donate large sums of money to worthy causes, but the Hollywood star seemed anything but Christian. His public speech, his movie roles, and his lifestyle didn’t match what he claimed to be. Would God accept gifts from a person who openly lived in sin? Not a chance.
God didn’t desire the blood of bulls and goats. He wanted ancient Israel to know how costly sin was and that sin brings death and suffering, so the priests could make all the sacrifices they wanted, but if the people (and the priests too) didn’t obey, the sacrifice was a big waste of time. God will not accept a sacrifice that doesn’t cost us something or a sacrifice made to God while we’re being disobedient. God would rather have the obedience than the sacrifice.
As you have read, good intentions are not enough because anyone can give away their wealth to help others, but without obedience, it’s pointless, and it won’t help them in the day of Jesus’ visitation. There is nothing more priceless than trusting in Christ, and no amount of sacrifice could ever achieve what He’s done for us on the cross.