Proverbs 19:1

ESV Better is a poor person who walks in his integrity than one who is crooked in speech and is a fool.
NIV Better the poor whose walk is blameless than a fool whose lips are perverse.
NASB Better is a poor person who walks in his integrity Than a person who is perverse in speech and is a fool.
CSB Better a poor person who lives with integrity than someone who has deceitful lips and is a fool.
NLT Better to be poor and honest than to be dishonest and a fool.
KJV Better is the poor that walketh in his integrity, than he that is perverse in his lips, and is a fool.

What does Proverbs 19:1 mean?

Personal integrity has no price; it is more valuable than any financial gain. References to "crooked speech" (Proverbs 4:24; 6:12) imply something manipulative, immoral, or deceptive. The book of Proverbs notes that godly wisdom gives a person a better likelihood of earthly success (Proverbs 1:7; 3:1–4; 13:21), yet it does not claim that honesty is an invincible strategy for prosperity. In a corrupt world, diligent, honest, hardworking people can sometimes fall into some combination of poverty or persecution (1 Peter 3:17; John 16:33). This proverb notes that unfortunate truth, while also indicating that wealth is never worth immorality to obtain.

Many first-century Christians were poor due to persecution, but the Lord did not forsake them. Today, too, through no fault of their own, many Christians are poor but not abandoned by the Lord. Hebrews 13:5 counsels: "Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, 'I will never leave you nor forsake you.'" The verse that follows testifies: "So we can confidently say, 'The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?'"
What is the Gospel?
Download the app: