Proverbs 14:22 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Proverbs 14:22, NIV: Do not those who plot evil go astray? But those who plan what is good find love and faithfulness.

Proverbs 14:22, ESV: Do they not go astray who devise evil? Those who devise good meet steadfast love and faithfulness.

Proverbs 14:22, KJV: Do they not err that devise evil? but mercy and truth shall be to them that devise good.

Proverbs 14:22, NASB: Will they who devise evil not go astray? But kindness and truth will be to those who devise good.

Proverbs 14:22, NLT: If you plan to do evil, you will be lost; if you plan to do good, you will receive unfailing love and faithfulness.

Proverbs 14:22, CSB: Don't those who plan evil go astray? But those who plan good find loyalty and faithfulness.

What does Proverbs 14:22 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

This verse asks a rhetorical question to emphasize that those who plan to do sinful things are wandering away from truth. Scripture often points out the danger in that choice, both on earth (Psalm 7:14–16; Proverbs 5:22; 11:17) and in eternity (Proverbs 11:23; 12:7; Revelation 20:11–15). In contrast, those who follow God's goodness more often experience good in this life and have corresponding hope in the next (John 3:36).

The sinner's thinking is twisted. He thinks deceit and craftiness bring rich rewards, but such thinking is flawed. Plotting evil can bring temporary advantages (Psalm 73:2–3), but it always leads to divine judgment (Psalm 73:16–19). The civilization in Noah's time plotted evil continually but was swept away in the flood God sent as judgment (Genesis 6:5–7). Noah stood in sharp contrast to that civilization and rode out the flood in the ark God had instructed him to build (Genesis 6:8).

Following the right path, the path of goodness (Proverbs 2:20; 12:2; Psalm 119:66–68), leads to a significant reward. Those who pursue good experience the unfailing love and faithfulness of God. Jeremiah describes this in Lamentations 3:22–23. He writes: "The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness."