Please Support the Bible Translation Work of the Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
Righteousness Serves as a Protection
Proverbs 13:6 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
6 Righteousness guards the blameless of way,
but wickedness will overthrow sin.
Righteousness guards the blameless of way: Righteous; upright; just: (צֶדֶק tsedeq) refers to one who is in a righteous standing before God, who is characterized by righteous actions and morals under God’s moral standards. What does this mean? The person adheres to God’s standards, His moral code. He does what is required according to this moral standard. (Ps 7:9) He is honest, fair, and truthful in his actions, which are correct according to God’s standards. He is not deviant in any way (Lev. 19:36). He can make a moral judgment when deciding what is right and wrong without prejudice. (Gen. 18:23-24; Deut. 16:20; Prov. 3:33; Zeph. 2:3; James 3:18.) Guards (נָצַר natsar) means to keep watch, to watch over, to protect, cause being safe from danger, suggestive of a relationship with the personification of protector, righteousness. The phrase blameless of way means one whose way of life is upright. The Hebrew adjective upright (יָשָׁר yashar) refers to a person’s behavior that harmonizes with God’s principles or standards, the sense of honesty and integrity in relations as contrasted with the violent and devious man. The upright is God’s true believers, his holy ones, who diligently seek and search to know love, obey God, and live righteously as one can within their human imperfection. – Gen. 6:5; 8:21; Jer. 17:9; Rom. 5:12.
but wickedness will overthrow sin: In the Hebrew, wickedness (רִשְׁעָה rishah) is a state of being, not a group of people. A quality, state, or condition that does not conform to God’s standard of moral excellence is wicked, inadequate, bad, evil, or worthless. (Prov. 11:5) Overthrow is the rendering of a different Hebrew word (סָלַף salaph) than what was used in 11:11 and 12:7. Here, too, sin (חַטָּאת chattath) is the translation of an abstract noun (quality, state, or condition), not a reference to sinners. Therefore, the sense is that he who is living a life of wickedness, in that he is not conforming to God’s moral standards, he will bring to ruin or destroy himself for living in sin (sinfulness).
In verse 6 of chapter 13, the wise king highlights that when one does what is right in God’s eyes (living by God’s moral standards), which is beneficial. Like an ancient stronghold fortress, righteousness serves as a protection, whereas wickedness will bring the unrighteous one to ruin like a fortress that has been breached for his living in sin (sinfulness). Thus, righteousness, living by the moral standards of God’s Word, will serve as protection because he is blameless (upright) in all his ways. Wickedness, on the other hand, will bring to ruin the man who walks (lives) in sin. For the one rushing into destruction, he believes that wickedness is actually the safest way when, in fact, it is just the opposite. The one living righteously will be protected or guarded by his walking in a blameless (upright) way, so his very righteousness will serve as protection.
 That is, guards him whose way is upright