Proverbs 11:6

ESV The righteousness of the upright delivers them, but the treacherous are taken captive by their lust.
NIV The righteousness of the upright delivers them, but the unfaithful are trapped by evil desires.
NASB The righteousness of the upright will rescue them, But the treacherous will be caught by their own greed.
CSB The righteousness of the upright rescues them, but the treacherous are trapped by their own desires.
NLT The godliness of good people rescues them; the ambition of treacherous people traps them.
KJV The righteousness of the upright shall deliver them: but transgressors shall be taken in their own naughtiness.

What does Proverbs 11:6 mean?

The prior verse (Proverbs 11:5) makes a very similar point, using different phrases. A righteous person escapes from trouble and death. Trouble cannot trap him or defeat him. Leading a godly life means not engaging in the crooked, deceptive sins which lead to natural consequences. Godliness also leaves others no room for criticism, making it harder for evil people to tell lies about the godly person. His pursuit of righteousness empowers him to triumph over both.

Writing to the Corinthian church, the apostle Paul promises, "No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it" (1 Corinthians 10:13).

The righteous person can trust in the Lord to supply grace to help him in time of need (Hebrews 4:16), but the sinful, self-serving one does not trust God. As a result, he is helpless when trouble and death strike him. His evil desires spin a web that traps him and he has no way of escape. James writes: "Each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death" (James 1:14–15). It is all too common for those who indulge in sin to be destroyed by the consequences of that very vice.
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