(Proverbs 29:5 KJV) A man that flattereth his neighbour spreadeth a net for his feet.
What is the difference between a compliment and flattery? I think that is an important distinction here. It might be the honesty factor. A complement has a genuine quality to it. Every once in awhile I run into someone who will call me “young man.” I am old enough that I know it is tongue in cheek but what if I were dressing like I was young and putting on a style that only fit youth. In that case it would be flattery. There might even be a bit of mocking in it.
When you praise someone and are not sincere it can come back to haunt you. I remember one time when I was trying to be sensitive to someone’s feelings and praised a certain bit of cuisine they had prepared. I locked myself in to eating that dish every time I was around them. I was trapped.
So? It is important to make our comments genuine. I guess the other alternative is to say nothing but that is often impossible.