<<smooth talk>>

Flattery involves excessive or insincere compliments and is often used as a cover-up for perceived weakness of one’s real intentions – particularly to win favour, gain an

   What is the motive behind it?

advancement or in the hope that the giver will also receive back an exaggerated compliment. Flattery is a trap that brings ruin as, “A man is tested by the praise he receives” (Prov 26:28, 27:21, 29:5). “He who rebukes will gain more favour than by flattery” (Prov 28:23). Constructive criticism or analysis shows where improvements can be made.

Flattery often leads to pride which brings destruction while humility results in honour – thus the instruction not to think more highly of oneself than is warranted (Prov 18:12; Rom 12:3). Have a healthy self-esteem, while being realistic about your ability and achievements, besides giving honour and genuine praise to others where due (Rom 13:7). 

Our speech should be honest and sincere without trying to manipulate or praise others beyond the truth. Can it be said of us, “we never used flattery or put on a mask” because we were not looking for man’s praise (1 Thes 2:5)?

See also: motive/motivation, speech.

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