Proverbs 21:18

NET ©

The wicked become a ransom for the righteous, and the faithless are taken in the place of the upright.

NIV ©

The wicked become a ransom for the righteous, and the unfaithful for the upright.

NASB ©

The wicked is a ransom for the righteous, And the treacherous is in the place of the upright.

NLT ©

Sometimes the wicked are punished to save the godly, and the treacherous for the upright.

MSG ©

What a bad person plots against the good, boomerangs; the plotter gets it in the end.

BBE ©

The evil-doer will be given as a price for the life of the good man, and the worker of deceit in the place of the upright.

NRSV ©

The wicked is a ransom for the righteous, and the faithless for the upright.

NKJV ©

The wicked shall be a ransom for the righteous, And the unfaithful for the upright.

KJV
The wicked
<07563>
[shall be] a ransom
<03724>
for the righteous
<06662>_,
and the transgressor
<0898> (8802)
for the upright
<03477>_.
HEBREW
dgwb
<0898>
Myrsy
<03477>
txtw
<08478>
esr
<07563>
qydul
<06662>
rpk (21:18)
<03724>
LXXM
perikayarma
<4027>  
N-NSN
de
<1161>  
PRT
dikaiou
<1342>  
A-GSM
anomov
<459>  
A-NSM
NET © [draft] ITL
The wicked
<07563>
become a ransom
<03724>
for the righteous
<06662>
, and the faithless
<0898>
are taken in the place
<08478>
of the upright
<03477>
.
NET © Notes

tn The term “become” is supplied in the translation.

sn The Hebrew word translated “ransom” (כֹּפֶר, kofer) normally refers to the price paid to free a prisoner. R. N. Whybray (Proverbs [CBC], 121) gives options for the meaning of the verse: (1) If it means that the wicked obtain good things that should go to the righteous, it is then a despairing plea for justice (which would be unusual in the book of Proverbs); but if (2) it is taken to mean that the wicked suffers the evil he has prepared for the righteous, then it harmonizes with Proverbs elsewhere (e.g., 11:8). The ideal this proverb presents – and the future reality – is that in calamity the righteous escape and the wicked suffer in their place (e.g., Haman in the book of Esther).

tn Or “treacherous” (so ASV, NASB, NLT); NIV “the unfaithful.”

tn The phrase “are taken” does not appear in the Hebrew but is implied by the parallelism; it is supplied in the translation for smoothness.