Precious - Vine's Expository Dictionary of Old Testament Words

Usage Number: 1
Part Of Speech: Adjective
Strong's Number: H3368
Original Word: yaqar

Usage Notes: "precious; rare; excellent; weighty; noble." Although none of the 35 biblical appearances of this word occurs before First Samuel, they are scattered throughout the rest of the Bible. First, yaqar means "precious" in the sense of being rare and valuable: "And he took their king's crown from off his head, the weight whereof was a talent of gold with the precious stones: and it was set on David's head" (2 Sam. 12:30). The emphasis is on the nuance "rare" in 1 Sam. 3:1: "And the word of the Lord was precious in those days; there was no open vision."

Second, the word can focus on the value of a thing: "How excellent is thy loving-kindness, O God!" (Psa. 36:7). Third, this word means "weighty" or "noble": "A little foolishness is weightier than wisdom and honor" (Eccl. 10:1, nasb); like dead flies which make perfume stink, so a little foolishness spoils wisdom and honor, it is worth more in a negative sense (cf. Lam. 4:2).

Usage Number: 2
Part Of Speech: Verb
Strong's Number: H3365
Original Word: yaqar

Usage Notes: "to be difficult, be valued from, be valued or honored, be precious." This verb, which occurs 11 times in biblical Hebrew, has cognates in Ugaritic, Arabic, and Akkadian. The word means "to be precious" in 1 Sam. 26:21: "Then said Saul, I have sinned: return, my son David: for I will no more do thee harm, because my soul was precious in thine eyes this day…."

Usage Number: 3
Part Of Speech: Noun
Strong's Number: H3366
Original Word: yeqar

Usage Notes: "precious thing; value; price; splendor; honor." This noun, which appears 16 times in biblical Hebrew, is Aramaic in form. The word signifies "value or price" (Zech. 11:13), "splendor" (Esth. 1:4), and "honor" (Esth. 8:16). In Jer. 20:5 the word refers to "precious things": "Moreover I will deliver all the strength of this city, and all the labors thereof, and all the precious things thereof…."

Vine's Expository Dictionary of Old Testament Words