What does Proverbs 13:5 mean?
ESV: The righteous hates falsehood, but the wicked brings shame and disgrace.
NIV: The righteous hate what is false, but the wicked make themselves a stench and bring shame on themselves.
NASB: A righteous person hates a false statement, But a wicked person acts disgustingly and shamefully.
CSB: The righteous hate lying, but the wicked bring disgust and shame.
NLT: The godly hate lies; the wicked cause shame and disgrace.
KJV: A righteous man hateth lying: but a wicked man is loathsome, and cometh to shame.
NKJV: A righteous man hates lying, But a wicked man is loathsome and comes to shame.
Verse Commentary:
According to this verse, godly people have a natural distaste for lies and deception. In contrast, immoral people often deal in dishonesty, which brings consequences. This reinforces other statements about the danger of lies (Proverbs 11:3; 21:28) and the association between honesty and godly wisdom (Proverbs 10:32; 12:17, 22).

Falsehood includes more than verbal lying. Hypocrisy is a form of falsehood that Jesus condemned in the religious leaders of his day. He instructed: "And when you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces that their fasting may be seen by others" (Matthew 6:16). He warned: "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves" (Matthew 7:15). The hypocrite lies by pretending to believe one thing while doing something else.

Ananias and Sapphira brought not only shame and disgrace on themselves but also death (Acts 5:1–11). They falsely suggested they had given the full sales amount of a piece of property. Tragically, this was an unnecessary lie. They were not obligated to give anything, but they wanted to be highly regarded for their feigned generosity. The same man who pronounced their judgment, Peter, later admonishes in 1 Peter 2:1 to "put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander."
Verse Context:
Proverbs 13:4–11 observes key differences between the rich and poor, the testimony of the righteous and the dismal end of the wicked, the insolence of the wicked and the willingness of the wise to accept advice. This continues the pattern of contrast and comparison used in this section of the book.
Chapter Summary:
This chapter of Proverbs continues Solomon's wise sayings. He counsels his readers to be sensible and hardworking, as well as honest. This allows a person to be content with what they have, to enjoy life, and to bless their descendants. Laziness leads to trouble and ruin, as does a lack of discipline.
Chapter Context:
Starting in chapter 10, the book of Proverbs records a long series of wise sayings from Solomon. These continue for several chapters. Through chapter 15, a major focus is on issues such as godly living, mostly given in contrast with examples of ungodliness. This chapter emphasizes themes such as work ethic, honesty, and discipline.
Book Summary:
Proverbs is best understood in context with the books of Ecclesiastes and Job. In Proverbs, “wisdom” is given in short, simple, general terms. Ecclesiastes represents wisdom based on observation and experience. This often shows how the general principles of the book of Proverbs don’t apply in absolutely every circumstance. Job represents wisdom based on the experience of suffering and injustice. All three come to the conclusion that God does indeed know best, and the most sensible course of action is to follow His will.
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