presh'-us (stands for 17 different words, chief of which are yaqar; timios):

(1) Generally in the literal sense, "of great price," "costly," "expensive," of material things (e.g. Proverbs 1:13; Jeremiah 20:5; Mark 14:3 the King James Version), especially of precious stones (2 Samuel 12:30; 2 Chronicles 3:6; 1 Corinthians 3:12 the King James Version, etc.).

(2) Sometimes "of great moral (non-material) value." "Precious in the sight of Yahweh is the death of his saints" (Psalms 116:15); "his precious and exceeding great promises" (2 Peter 1:4); compare Psalms 139:17; 2 Peter 1:1.

The literal and the moral senses are both involved in the expression, "knowing that ye were redeemed, not with corruptible things, .... but with precious blood" (1 Peter 1:18,19). "Preciousness" (time) occurs in 1 Peter 2:7 the American Standard Revised Version, the English Revised Version, for the King James Version "precious."

D. Miall Edwards

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Bibliography Information
Orr, James, M.A., D.D. General Editor. "Entry for 'PRECIOUS'". "International Standard Bible Encyclopedia". 1915.