Proverbs 26:26

ESV though his hatred be covered with deception, his wickedness will be exposed in the assembly.
NIV Their malice may be concealed by deception, but their wickedness will be exposed in the assembly.
NASB Though his hatred covers itself with deception, His wickedness will be revealed in the assembly.
CSB Though his hatred is concealed by deception, his evil will be revealed in the assembly.
NLT While their hatred may be concealed by trickery, their wrongdoing will be exposed in public.
KJV Whose hatred is covered by deceit, his wickedness shall be shewed before the whole congregation.

What does Proverbs 26:26 mean?

This passage deals with deceptive people, who disguise their malice using attractive words and appearances (Proverbs 26:23–25). Here, Solomon (Proverbs 25:1) again ties this to the idea of hatred: the person who lies to give a false impression to others is showing hatred for others. Their words only cover that sin, and the cover will not last. Eventually, the liar will be found out (Proverbs 5:22).

The "assembly" in this verse refers to any group brought together for some purpose. In this case, it might mean a courtroom setting, where the guilty person is being judged. Accountability certainly applies to our relationship with God. Galatians 6:7–8 assures us that "God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh [the sin nature] will from the flesh reap corruption." Psalm 7 refers to the retribution God will execute on the wicked as a righteous judge (Psalm 7:11) The same psalm promises, "If a man does not repent, God will whet his sword; he has bent and readied his bow" (Psalm 7:12). This ends in assurance that the wicked man's "mischief returns upon his own head and on his own skull his violence descends" (Psalm 7:16).
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