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What Are Praise, Worship, And Thanksgiving?

In this brief post, I will outline and define what praise, worship, and thanksgiving are. Each is a foundational component of our relationship with God and the church. While they are related and often blended in their outward expression, they differ.

The Bible says, Psalm 100:4 - Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise; be thankful to Him, and bless His name.

So what is praise? What is thanksgiving? What is worship? Here is a brief introductory look at each and their differences.

the differences between praise, worship and thanksgiving


Thanksgiving is giving thanks to God for what He has done. In thanksgiving, we speak about God’s goodness. Through thanksgiving, we make known the works of God and what He has done. This gives a visual expression of extending the hand to exalt the one being honoured. It is an attitude of humble gratitude and gratefulness for what God has done.

Psalm 69:30 - I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify Him with thanksgiving.

Psalm 107:22 - And let them offer the sacrifices of thanksgiving and declare His works with rejoicing.

As we see in Psalm 100:4, thanksgiving is a gateway or entry point into the courts of praise.


Praise is a declaration and acknowledgement of who God is. In praise, we speak about God’s greatness; we speak of His might, power, activities and what He has done. We are declaring the awesomeness of God. We are magnifying God and making known who He is.

Psalm 9:11 - Sing praises to the Lord who dwells in Zion; declare His deeds among the people.

Psalm 78:4 - We will not hide them from their children, but will tell the coming generation the praises of the Lord, and His strength, and the wonderful works that He has done.

Psalm 34:3 - Oh, magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His name together.


Words in the Bible describe worship as primarily an attitude of the body. Worship is principally an attitude of submission and surrender, recognizing the one being worshipped as superior and holy, righteous, pure and complete. Many words used to speak of worship in scripture give a picture of bowing the head, bowing the upper part of the body, and/or being prostrate on the ground.

Psalm 29:2 - Give to the Lord the glory of His name; worship the Lord in holy splendor.

Psalm 95:6 - O come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker.

Psalm 132:7 - “We will go to His dwelling place, we will worship at His footstool.”

About worship, the Bible says, Luke 4:8 -‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only shall you serve.’ Jesus said that we serve who we worship. This is why we are not to worship anyone else but God. He is superior and holy; He is above all. He is perfect. We must surrender and submit fully only to Him.


Praise, thanksgiving, and worship should be practiced daily in our Christian walk. They are not just for church on Sunday. Remember, while we have these separate words describing different things, most of the time, when we are in a place of thanksgiving, praise and worship, we flow in and out and mix them. I hope this gives a better understanding of each of these activities.

Psalm 138:2 - I will worship toward Your holy temple, and praise Your name for Your lovingkindness and for Your truth; for You have exalted Your word above all Your name.

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Jan 05
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I appreciate your encouragement.

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