Proverbs 1:16 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Proverbs 1:16, NIV: "for their feet rush into evil, they are swift to shed blood."

Proverbs 1:16, ESV: "for their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed blood."

Proverbs 1:16, KJV: "For their feet run to evil, and make haste to shed blood."

Proverbs 1:16, NASB: "For their feet run to evil, And they are quick to shed blood."

Proverbs 1:16, NLT: "They rush to commit evil deeds. They hurry to commit murder."

Proverbs 1:16, CSB: "because their feet run toward evil and they hurry to shed blood."

What does Proverbs 1:16 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

This warning is a reference back to verses 11–14. Even though the lures are tempting, the type of people who run to evil will take you down with them. There is no honor among thieves. They will do anything to get ahead, including shedding blood, even your blood. Those who persist in willful evil should be avoided at all costs. While this might seem like common sense, Solomon's warning is meant to expose how even the worst sinners will tempt others to join them.

Even when the stakes are not as high—or don't seem to be—this principle still applies. The book of Proverbs will explore this idea again (Proverbs 13:20). The New Testament gives similar advice, from the apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:33: "Bad company ruins good morals." This is why Solomon warns to not even walk a single step in that path. Every moment spent with those who are trying to tempt you to evil is another moment closer to spiritual and tangible ruin.