In Mishlei 11-03 we have seen how yashrus (fair-mindedness) encourages a person to be grateful for favors and kindnesses. Thus, its opposite is disloyalty or ingratitude. People who display it are called bogdim (traitors). Such people allow themselves free license to bring harm to others. But they themselves now suffer the consequences.
צִדְקַת יְשָׁרִים תַּצִּילֵם וּבְהַוַּת בֹּגְדִים יִלָּכֵדוּ
(6) The righteousness of the fair-minded will rescue them, but the ungrateful will be trapped in their own false schemes.
The first part of this proverb teaches that tzidkus (righteousness) rescues the yesharim from any negative consequences of holding on to their principles.
The second part contrasts the yesharim with the bogdim who suffer the consequences of their own abandonment of principle.
(6) The righteousness — צִדְקַת
of the fair-minded — יְשָׁרִים
will rescue them — תַּצִּילֵם
from any negative consequences of holding on to their principles.
But in their own schemes — וּבְהַוַּת
will the ungrateful — בֹּגְדִים
who try to take personal advantage
be trapped — יִלָּכֵדוּ
(1) The fair-minded person recognizes, appreciates, and chooses fair-mindedness (yashrus) even when it causes him trouble. He is devoted to the truth and is prepared to defend it. (רבינו יונה)
(2) The tzidkus of the yashar will save him from harm that might he come about through his choice of yashrus. (רבינו יונה)
(3) The bogdim who are supported by falsehood will be caught by the false schemes, with which they intended to harm others. (רבינו יונה, חנוך לנער)
(4) The bogdim who rely on their intelligence to choose an option that is not in conformance with the laws of the Torah will be caught in their own trap. (מצודות)
NOTE: For a PDF copy of this segment, please click on the blue title below.
This will enable you to print out the entire text of the article.