Definition: Recognition of the quality, worth, or significance of people and things.
1. In the Bible, the Lord often expressed His appreciation by giving people credit, praising them for their good qualities, or for making the right decisions.
Job 1:8 And the Lord said unto Satan, Hast thou considered My servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?
Acts 13:22b And [the Lord] said, I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after Mine Own heart, which shall fulfil all My will.
John 1:47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming to Him, and saith of him, Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile [deceit]!
Luke 7:9 [Referring to the faith of the centurion whose servant Jesus healed:] When Jesus heard these things, He marvelled at him, and turned Him about, and said unto the people that followed Him, I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.
Luke 16:8a [Jesus even praised the unjust steward for his wisdom:] And the Lord commended the unjust steward, because he had done wisely.
Matthew 15:22-28 [Jesus praised the Canaanite woman who did not get offended at His hard saying:] And, behold, a woman of Canaan came out of the same coasts, and cried unto Him, saying, Have mercy on me, O Lord, Thou Son of David; my daughter is grievously vexed with a devil. 23 But He answered her not a word. And His disciples came and besought Him, saying, Send her away; for she crieth after us. 24 But He answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 25 Then came she and worshipped Him, saying, Lord, help me. 26 But He answered and said, It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs. 27 And she said, truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table. 28 Then Jesus answered and said unto her, O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt. And her daughter was made whole from that very hour.
2. The Lord also commends us when we invest our talents wisely to help others and further His Kingdom.
Matthew 25:21 [In the Parable of the Talents, Jesus narrated:] His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
Luke 12:37 [Jesus said:] Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them.
Hebrews 6:10 For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward His Name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister.
3. The Lord wants us also to show appreciation to others.
Proverbs 31:30b A woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised.
Song of Solomon 6:9 My dove, my undefiled is but one; she is the only one of her mother, she is the choice one of her that bare her. The daughters saw her, and blessed her; yea, the queens and the concubines, and they praised her.
1 Samuel 15:6 [King Saul remembered to show appreciation to foreign tribes for having shown kindness to his forefathers] And Saul said unto the Kenites, Go, depart, get you down from among the Amalekites, lest I destroy you with them: for ye shewed kindness to all the children of Israel, when they came up out of Egypt. So the Kenites departed from among the Amalekites.
1 Samuel 25:32-33 And David said to Abigail, Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, which sent thee this day to meet me: 33 And blessed be thy advice, and blessed be thou, which hast kept me this day from coming to shed blood, and from avenging myself with mine own hand.
2 Samuel 10:2a Then said David, I will shew kindness unto Hanun … as his father shewed kindness unto me. And David sent to comfort him by the hand of his servants for his father.
1 King 2:7 But shew kindness unto the sons of Barzillai the Gileadite, and let them be of those that eat at thy table: for so they came to me when I fled because of Absalom thy brother.
Romans 13:7 Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
Philippians 4:8 [Everyone has some good qualities, so let’s recognize them:] Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
4. The Apostle Paul’s letters to the brethren were good samples of showing appreciation to others.
Romans 1:8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world.
Romans 16:1-2 I commend unto you Phebe our sister, which is a servant of the church which is at Cenchrea: 2 That ye receive her in the Lord, as becometh saints, and that ye assist her in whatsoever business she hath need of you: for she hath been a succourer of many, and of myself also.
1 Corinthians 16:15-18 [Paul makes mention of the family of Stephanus and his companions, who were faithful in their missionary work]
2 Corinthians 8:1-5 [Paul honors the church at Macedonia for their extreme generosity and devotion to Paul’s leadership] [See also Philippians 4:14-16]
2 Corinthians 8:16-23 [Paul commends the faithfulness of Titus and his travelling companion, who administered to the material needs of the Church]
Colossians 1:3-4 We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you, 4 Since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all the saints.
1 Thessalonians 1 [all] [Paul writes to the brethren in Thessalonica:] 3 Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father. … 7 Ye were ensamples to all that believe in Macedonia and Achaia.
2 Thessalonians 1:3,4 We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is meet, because that your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth; 4 So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure:
5. Other examples in the Bible of showing appreciation:
Genesis 41:39-41 [Pharaoh showed his appreciation to Joseph for interpreting his dream and for Joseph’s wise counsel:] And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, Forasmuch as God hath shewed thee all this, there is none so discreet and wise as thou art: 40 Thou shalt be over my house, and according unto thy word shall all my people be ruled: only in the throne will I be greater than thou. 41 And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, See, I have set thee over all the land of Egypt. [See also Genesis 41:1-43]
Exodus 2:11-21 [Reuel, the priest of Midian, scolded his daughters for not showing appreciation to Moses, who had helped them draw water:] 20 And he said unto his daughters, And where is he? Why is it that ye have left the man? Call him, that he may eat bread.
Ruth 3:10 [Boaz expressed his appreciation toRuth for her unselfish devotion:] 10 And he said, Blessed be thou of the Lord, my daughter: for thou hast shewed more kindness in the latter end than at the beginning, inasmuch as thou followedst not young men, whether poor or rich. [See all of chapter 3]
Nehemiah 7:2 I gave my brother Hanani, and Hananiah the ruler of the palace, charge over Jerusalem: for he was a faithful man, and feared God above many.
Esther 6:11b [King Ahasuerus showed his appreciation to Mordecai for unveiling the plot against the king’s life by having Mordecai dressed in royal apparel and paraded through the city:] Thus shall it be done to the man whom the king delighteth to honour. [See also Esther 6:1-11]
1 King 13:1-7 [King Jeroboam of Judah was appreciative of the young prophet who had asked the Lord to restore the repentant king’s hand:] 4 And it came to pass, when king Jeroboam heard the saying of the man of God, which had cried against the altar in Bethel, that he put forth his hand from the altar, saying, Lay hold on him. And his hand, which he put forth against him, dried up, so that he could not pull it in again to him. … 6 And the king answered and said unto the man of God, intreat now the face of the Lord thy God, and pray for me, that my hand may be restored me again. And the man of God besought the Lord, and the king’s hand was restored him again, and became as it was before. 7 And the king said unto the man of God, Come home with me, and refresh thyself, and I will give thee a reward.
2 Kings 5:15 [After Naaman was cleansed of leprosy, he showed his appreciation to the prophet Elisha by offering him a reward:] And he returned to the man of God, he and all his company, and said, Behold, now I know that there is no God in all the earth, but in Israel: now therefore, I pray thee, take a blessing of thy servant. [See also 2 Kings 5:1-19]
[See also Revelation chapters 2 and 3 for a wonderful example of how the Lord faithfully shows appreciation for good qualities, even when convicting us about our errors]
6. We should never fail to show our appreciation to the Lord by praising Him for all He has done for us.
Deuteronomy 8:10,11 [Moses exhorts:] When thou hast eaten and art full, then thou shalt bless the Lord thy God for the good land which He hath given thee. 11 Beware that thou forget not the Lord thy God, in not keeping His commandments, and His judgements, and His statutes, which I command thee this day.
Psalm 103:2 Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits. [See also Psalm 105:5]
Psalm 107:8 Oh that men would praise the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men!
Psalm 116:12-14 What shall I render unto the Lord for all His benefits toward me? 13 I will take the cup of Salvation, and call upon the Name of the Lord. 14 I will pay my vows unto the Lord now in the presence of all His people.
Luke 1:46-48 And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, 47 And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. 48 For He hath regarded the low estate of His handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. [See also verses 49-55]
Luke 17:15-19 [After Jesus healed the ten lepers, only one expressed appreciation:] And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God, 16 And fell down on his face at His feet, giving Him thanks: and he was a Samaritan, 17 And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? But where are the nine? 18 There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger. 19 And He said unto him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole.
Hebrews 13:15 By Him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to His Name.