29 Bible Verses About Wickedness (With Commentary)

Have you ever noticed the prevalence of wickedness in this world? From mass shootings, to extreme poverty, to human trafficking, the human race faces a myriad of evil actions every day.

Thankfully, scripture provides many passages about wise judgment, justice, and mercy which help us to understand the effect of wickedness on society.

Today, we will look at bible verses about wickedness that serve to remind us of God’s guiding wisdom and justice.

Bible Verses About Wickedness

Proverbs 21:15

“When justice is done, it brings joy to the righteous but terror to evildoers.”

Justice brings peace and joy to those who live righteously, observing the laws and precepts. Conversely, it incites fear in the wicked, for it serves as a reminder of their impending judgement. Here, the stark contrast underscores the moral weight of our actions.

Romans 6:23

“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

This verse cogently juxtaposes the consequences of sin and righteousness. The wages, or payment, for wickedness is spiritual death. Yet, in contrast, God’s gift—unearned and freely given—is eternal life through Christ.

Psalms 34:21

“Evil will slay the wicked; the foes of the righteous will be condemned.”

A poetic reflection of karma, this verse suggests that the wicked are often undone by their own evil deeds. Simultaneously, those opposing righteousness are met with condemnation. It’s a firm call for personal and social accountability.

1 John 5:19

“We know that we are children of God, and that the whole world is under the control of the evil one.”

In this verse, John draws a line between the godly and the worldly. It implies that while believers belong to God, the world remains under the sway of evil, underscoring the spiritual battle we face.

Isaiah 13:11

“I will punish the world for its evil, the wicked for their sins. I will put an end to the arrogance of the haughty and will humble the pride of the ruthless.”

Here, Isaiah’s prophetic voice echoes God’s resolve against wickedness. The condemnation of arrogance and pride underscores the biblical admonition against self-exaltation.

Proverbs 14:16

“The wise fear the LORD and shun evil, but a fool is hotheaded and yet feels secure.”

This Proverb dichotomizes wisdom and foolishness. It reveals that the wise avoid evil out of reverence for God, whereas the foolish, in their haste and overconfidence, invite trouble.

Also Read: 25 Bible Verses About Wise Counsel (With Commentary)

Matthew 7:17

“Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.”

Through this botanical metaphor, Jesus explains the essence of character and actions. Just as a tree is known by its fruit, so too are people known by their deeds. Wicked actions, thus, are fruits of a corrupt tree.

1 Corinthians 6:9-10

“Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men, nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.”

Paul reminds the Corinthians that persistent wickedness, such as immorality and deceit, bars one from God’s Kingdom. It’s an explicit call for self-examination and repentance.

Psalm 1:6

“For the LORD watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked leads to destruction.”

The Psalmist highlights divine favor towards the righteous, while stating the inevitable downfall of the wicked. Here, the paths of righteousness and wickedness starkly diverge.

Proverbs 28:1

“The wicked flee though no one pursues, but the righteous are as bold as a lion.”

This verse is an exploration of the psychological impact of righteousness and wickedness. The wicked, ridden with guilt, live in constant fear, while the righteous, in their moral certainty, display boldness.

Proverbs 15:29

“The LORD is far from the wicked, but he hears the prayer of the righteous.”

This Proverb elucidates God’s close relationship with the righteous, underlining His attentiveness to their prayers. Conversely, it notes God’s distance from those engaged in wickedness.

Job 4:8

“As I have observed, those who plow evil and those who sow trouble reap it.”

Job presents an agricultural metaphor for the principle of retribution. By sowing wickedness, individuals are bound to harvest distress, reaping what they have sown.

Matthew 13:49-50

“This is how it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come and separate the wicked from the righteous and throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

Jesus employs a fishing metaphor, illustrating the final judgement, where the righteous will be separated from the wicked. It’s a sobering reminder of the eternal consequences of wickedness.

Proverbs 4:14-15

“Do not set foot on the path of the wicked or walk in the way of evildoers. Avoid it, do not travel on it; turn from it and go on your way.”

Here, the path of wickedness is portrayed as a dangerous route to be avoided. The advice is explicit and unambiguous: stay clear of evil and its allure.

Romans 1:29-32

“They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.”

Paul provides an exhaustive list of wicked acts, ranging from envy to murder, and notes the grave consequences thereof. His words serve as a mirror for self-reflection and a call for repentance.

Ezekiel 18:20

“The one who sins is the one who will die. The child will not share the guilt of the parent, nor will the parent share the guilt of the child. The righteousness of the righteous will be credited to them, and the wickedness of the wicked will be charged against them.”

This verse reveals the personal nature of sin and righteousness. It refutes the idea of collective guilt or merit, emphasizing personal responsibility for one’s actions.

Ephesians 5:11

“Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.”

Paul exhorts the Ephesians to not only avoid wickedness but also to expose it. This directive underscores the role of Christians in combating evil in society.

1 Peter 4:18

“And, ‘If it is hard for the righteous to be saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?'”

Peter poses a rhetorical question, emphasizing the difficulty of salvation and the dire fate of the wicked. It’s a potent reminder of the gravity of wickedness and the necessity of righteousness.

James 1:15

“Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.”

James provides a vivid imagery of how unchecked desires lead to sin, which eventually culminates in spiritual death. It’s a warning to guard against the enticements of wickedness.

Psalm 37:9

“For those who are evil will be destroyed, but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land.”

The Psalmist juxtaposes the fate of the wicked and the righteous. While destruction awaits the wicked, the righteous will inherit God’s blessings, emphasizing the rewards of righteousness.

Proverbs 11:18

“The wicked earn deceptive wages, but those who sow righteousness reap a sure reward.”

The Proverb connects actions with their outcomes: deceitful wages for the wicked and sure rewards for the righteous. It’s an echo of the principle that you reap what you sow.

2 Timothy 3:13

“But evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived.”

Paul warns Timothy about the degenerative trajectory of wickedness. By engaging in deceit, individuals not only mislead others, but also deceive themselves.

Matthew 25:46

“Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”

Jesus delineates the eternal consequences of wickedness and righteousness. While eternal punishment awaits the wicked, eternal life is promised to the righteous.

Psalm 73:12

“Behold, these are the wicked; always at ease, they increase in riches.”

The Psalmist highlights the seeming prosperity of the wicked, thereby questioning the morality of the world. Yet, the subsequent verses underscore their ultimate downfall.

1 Peter 3:12

“For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears are open to their prayer. But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”

Peter underscores God’s attentiveness to the righteous and His disapproval of the wicked. This verse serves as both a comfort to the righteous and a warning to evildoers.

Jude 1:15

“to judge everyone, and to convict all the ungodly of all the ungodly acts they have done in the ungodly way, and of all the harsh words ungodly sinners have spoken against him.”

Jude emphasizes God’s eventual judgement of all ungodly deeds. It’s a sobering reminder of the inevitability of divine justice and the importance of righteous living.

Galatians 5:19-21

“The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.”

In this passage, Paul catalogues the “acts of the flesh,” explicit manifestations of wickedness, and reaffirms that such behaviors are incompatible with God’s Kingdom. This presents a straightforward moral directive, warning against the peril of yielding to the flesh.

Also Read: 29 Bible Verses About Never Go to Bed Angry (With Commentary)

Proverbs 10:7

“The memory of the righteous is a blessing, but the name of the wicked will rot.”

This Proverb speaks of the enduring legacy of the righteous as opposed to the transient reputation of the wicked. While righteousness leaves a blessed memory, wickedness results in a tarnished name, suggesting the lasting impacts of our deeds.

James 4:17

“So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.”

James provides an intriguing perspective on sin, implying that it’s not only about committing evil acts, but also about the failure to do good when one can. It prompts self-reflection on our passive forms of wickedness.

Revelation 21:8

“But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.”

This apocalyptic vision from John underscores the eternal punishment that awaits various categories of sinners, making it clear that wickedness has severe, everlasting repercussions. It serves as a stern warning against such behaviors.