What's Wrong With GAMBLING?


1. Casting LOTS is a Sacred Ordinance

Proverbs 16:33 says, “The lot is cast in the lap, but its every decision is from the Lord.” Casting lots is used to choose between the sacrificial goat and the scapegoat (Lev. 16). Joshua cast lots to determine the allotment of land to the various tribes (Josh. 14). Nehemiah cast lots to determine who would live inside the walls of Jerusalem (Neh. 11:1). In the New Testament we read in Luke 1:9 that, according to the custom, it fell to Zechariah by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense. In Acts 1:26 we read about the replacement for Judas. They cast lots for them, and the lot fell on Matthias. The decision came from the Lord. The Lord gave special revelation to His people via the Urim and the Tummim (Exodus 28:30). Also when the Israelites were defeated in battle against Ai, Joshua had to bring the whole congregation before the Lord and the Lord Himself pointed out who the transgressor was, who had caused the wrath of the Lord over the whole congregation. When the services of the priests in the temple had to be allotted, as we can learn from Luke 1:9 concerning Zechariah, a lot was used.

Haman cast the lot to find out when would be the best time to destroy the Jews (Esther 3:7). The people who were with Jonah cast the lot, to know on whose account the evil had come upon them (Jonah 1:7). Soldiers cast the lot for Jesus' tunic (John 19:24). Psalm 22:18 says, "They divided my garments among them, and for my raiment they cast the lot." Since the lot is a solemn appeal to God to decide a doubtful matter, it would be blasphemous to degrade the ceremony into a game of chance or an exercise in greed.

We must avoid to the love of money (1 Timothy 6:10; Hebrews 13:5). We must avoid trying to “get rich quick” (Proverbs 13:11; 23:5; Ecclesiastes 5:10). This means avoiding gambling. Some people say that the word "Luck" is derived from "Lucifer."

2. The Chances of Winning Are Infinitesimal

The chances of winning are infinitesimal, which results in many peoples’ lives being ruined since they are mostly poor people to begin with.

First Timothy 6:10 tells us, “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.” Hebrews 13:5 declares, “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.’” Matthew 6:24 proclaims, “No one can serve two masters. 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.”

Gambling, like many things in life, can become addictive. Further, it becomes a means of getting rich quick or of seeking fortune apart from constructive labor or work that is truly beneficial to society. God has given us each abilities and with training we can become productive members of society and of the body of Christ. Gambling seeks to bypass this process.

Coveting, greed, and selfishness are the base emotions that entice us to gamble. Legalized gambling becomes an institutionalized form of greed.

Gambling destroys the work ethic. Several biblical passages dealing with the work ethic are: "You reap what you sow" (Gal. 6:7). “If a man will not work, he shall not eat.” (2 Th. 3:10) and "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" (Luke 6:31). Paul says, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.” (Colossians 3:23-24).

Gambling’s get-rich-quick philosophy appears to mock capitalism’s core values of disciplined work habits, thrift, prudence, adherence to routine, and the relationship between effort and reward. These core values of the work ethic are all part of the free enterprise system and are part of the Christian life. Gambling corrupts these values and replaces them with greed and selfishness. Rather than depending upon hard work, gamblers depend instead upon luck and chance.

Gambling destroys families. Gambling is a major cause of family neglect. Many of the social costs associated with gambling come from its mindset. As people get caught up in a gambling frenzy, they begin to neglect their families. Money spent on lottery tickets or at horse tracks is frequently not risk capital but is income that should be spent on family needs. In 1 Timothy 5:8, Paul says that a person who refuses to care for his family is worse than an infidel. Parents must provide for their children (2 Corinthians 12:14) and eat the bread of their labors (2 Thessalonians 3:12). When gambling is legalized it tempts people to neglect their God-mandated responsibility to care for their families, and these families often end up on welfare.

3. Gambling is Associated With Astrology and the Number 666

The original Roulette wheels have a 360 degree circle with 36 divisions of 10 degrees each, with a blank or zero division to represent the 5 days beyond the 360 days in a year. Adding all the numbers up on a Roulette Wheel (1-36) gives the total of 666. There are 36 numbered cards in a 52 card deck. One card each represents the 52 weeks of the year with 12 face cards representing the twelve months. Four Kings, four Queens, four Jacks, and four suits represent the four seasons. Why do fortune-tellers use a deck of cards to predict the future? Because the deck of cards is derived from astrology.

4. "Easy Come, Easy Go"

Studies show that the vast majority of lottery winners are in an even worse financial situation a few years after winning a jackpot than they were before. Why is that? Proverbs 13:11 Says, "Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished: but he that gathereth by labour shall increase." Why is this so? Because "whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap." "Get rich quick" schemes breed "Get poor quick" schemes. That's why they don't work. "Easy come, easy go." The success doesn't last. Working diligently and consistently over time with savings and investment will result in increase. But Ponzi schemes, MLM programs, the lottery and gambling only give an illusion of success. This is the "prosperity of fools" (Pr. 1:32). There are many stories of lucky lotto winners whose lives were seemingly cursed after winning big. Stories have been written about this amazing paradox. How do they lose millions of dollars in five to ten years? 1. Crack addiction. 2. IRS. 3. Charity to friends. 4. Vacations. 5. Partying. 6. Donations to church. 7. Gambling. 8. Lawsuits and divorce. 9. Quit job. 10. Suicide. Provide things honest in the sight of all men by rejecting financial vanity and being a faithful and diligent worker (Rom 12:17; Eph 4:28). Both God and men will respect your character and reward your efforts.

"Man to desire felicity is inclined;
To heavenly reason both deaf and blind,
Man's desire all follies entice;
Each runs impetuously to his favorite vice."
-- Cleanthes

"Cursed is the wretch, enslaved to such a vice,
Who ventures life and soul upon the dice." -- Horace

"These have chosen their own ways, and their soul
delights in their abominations; I also will choose harsh treatment for them and bring their fears upon them,
because when I called, no one answered, when I spoke, they did not listen; but they did what was evil in my eyes
and chose that in which I did not delight.” (Isa. 66:3-4)
"He who leaves certainty and sticks to chance,
When fools pipe he may dance."

"Of those who have become possessed of property by
unjust means, you will find that the majority have met
with punishment in one form or other. Rashness and
foolhardiness in the acquisition of property are
advantageous to but few, while they are a positive
misfortune to the many." -- Phaedrus

"Among mankind, while some with steady view
One constant course of darling vice pursue,
Most others float along the changing tide,
And now to virtue, now to vice they glide." -- Horace
The world is very evil,
The times are waxing late;
Be sober and keep vigil,
The Judge is at the gate --
The Judge that comes in mercy,
The Judge that comes with might,
To terminate the evil,
To diadem the right.
-- Bernard

"The devil leads him by the nose,
Who the dice too often throws."

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