Proverbs 6:12

ESV A worthless person, a wicked man, goes about with crooked speech,
NIV A troublemaker and a villain, who goes about with a corrupt mouth,
NASB A worthless person, a wicked man, Is one who walks with a perverse mouth,
CSB A worthless person, a wicked man goes around speaking dishonestly,
NLT What are worthless and wicked people like? They are constant liars,
KJV A naughty person, a wicked man, walketh with a froward mouth.
NKJV A worthless person, a wicked man, Walks with a perverse mouth;

What does Proverbs 6:12 mean?

This passage describes a single type of person, starting with terms like "wicked" and "worthless." The emphasis here is on how their sins earn them those descriptions. Solomon writes that a worthless, wicked person uses deceptive speech. In other, more modern terms, we might call such a person a scoundrel or a rascal. Others might choose to call this person crooked, a con-artist, or a scammer. He purposely tries to lead people astray by lying to them.

The Devil is the ultimate deceiver. Jesus said the Devil "does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies" (John 8:44). When the Devil tempted Eve in the garden of Eden, he lied. Although God had told Adam, "Of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die" (Genesis 2:17), the Devil told Eve, "You will not surely die" (Genesis 3:4).

First Timothy 4:1–2 predicts a time when some will wander from true faith by listening to deceitful false teachers. Furthermore, Satan will be cast into the bottomless pit at the beginning of Jesus' reign on earth "so that he might not deceive the nations any longer," until Jesus' thousand-year reign ends (Revelation 20:1–3).
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