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Adelle

Apr-13-2010

Gambling and christianity

Posted by Dj priesty On July - 10 - 2012

Does the Bible Mention Gambling?

Although the words “gambling” and “gamble” do not appear in the Bible, we cannot assume that an activity is not a sin simply because it is not mentioned. Looking at pornography on the Internet and using illegal drugs are not mentioned either, but both violate God’s laws.

While casinos and lotteries promise thrills and excitement, obviously people gamble to try to win money. Scripture gives very specific instructions about what our attitude should be toward money:

Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income. This too is meaningless. (Ecclesiastes 5:10, NIV)

“No servant can serve two masters. [Jesus said.] Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” (Luke 16:13, NIV)

For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. (1 Timothy 6:10, NIV)

Gambling is a way to bypass work, but the Bible counsels us to persevere and work hard:

 

Lazy hands make a man poor, but diligent hands bring wealth. (Proverbs 10:4, NIV)

One of the key principles in the Bible is that people should be wise stewards of everything God gives them, including their time, talent and treasure. Gamblers may believe they earn their money with their own labor and may spend it as they please, yet God gives people the talent and health to carry out their jobs, and their very life is a gift from him as well. Wise stewardship of extra money calls believers to invest it in the Lord’s work or to save it for an  emergency, rather than lose it in games in which the odds are stacked against the player.

Gamblers covet more money, but they may also covet the things money can buy, such as cars, boats, houses, expensive jewelry and clothing. The Bible forbids a covetous attitude in the Tenth Commandment:

“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his manservant or maidservant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” (Exodus 20:17, NIV)

Gambling also has the potential to turn into an addiction, like drugs or alcohol. According to the National Council on Problem Gambling, 2 million U.S. adults are pathological gamblers and another 4 to 6 million are problem gamblers. This addiction can destroy the stability of the family, lead to job loss, and cause a person to lose control of their life:

…for a man is a slave to whatever has mastered him. (2 Peter 2:19)

Some argue that gambling is nothing more than entertainment, no more immoral than going to a movie or concert. People who attend movies or concerts expect only entertainment in return, however, not money. They are not tempted to keep spending until they “break even.”

Finally, gambling provides a sense of false hope. Participants place their hope in winning, often against astronomical odds, instead of placing their hope in God. Throughout the Bible, we are constantly reminded that our hope is in God alone, not money, power, or position:

 

Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him. (Psalm 62:5, NIV)

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (Romans 15:13, NIV)

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