Why we don't encourage gambling

The Scriptures allow the privilege of private ownership. Though we hold title to possessions under civil law, we regard all we have as the property of God entrusted to us as stewards.

Gambling contradicts faith in God who rules all the affairs of His world, not by chance but by His providential care. Gambling lacks both the dignity of wages earned and the honour of a gift. It takes substance from the pocket of a neighbour without yielding a fair exchange.

Because it excites greed, it destroys the initiative of honest toil and often results in addiction. Government sponsorship of lotteries only enlarges the problem. Because of the evils it encourages, we refrain from gambling in all its forms for conscience’ sake and as a witness to the faith we have in Christ.

While customs and community standards change, there are changeless scriptural principles that govern us as Christians in our attitudes and conduct. Whatever we buy, use or wear reflects our commitment to Christ and our witness in the world (1 Corinthians 10:31-33). We therefore avoid extravagance and apply principles of simplicity of life when we make choices as to the image that we project through our possessions.

The increase of gambling and interest in gambling, together with a growing social acceptance of it, is yet another mark of the growing influence of the powers of evil in society. It is a sign that, even in an age of new technology and plenty, there is increasing dissatisfaction across society, an aching void that needs to be filled - whatever the cost.

Christians affirm that God provides for us, both in terms of personal satisfaction and provision of our daily requirements - what need have we then to gamble?

Those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame. Psalm 34:5 

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