Gambling could come in different forms, such as playing lottery, betting on games, flipping coins or entering some contests. As a Christian, you ought to know if what you are doing is right in the sight of God. Just in case you are not sure, here are 10 things the bible says about gambling.
1. The 10th commandment found in Exodus 20:17 talks about coveting which is the root of most of our problems.
2. What is one of the reasons that people gamble and play the lottery? They covet money, quick and easy. 1 Timothy 6:10 declares that “the love of money is the root of all evil.” Therefore, the enticement of gambling and playing the lottery obviously comes under these texts.
3. Matthew 6:21 quotes Christ as saying “where your treasure is there will your heart be also.” For those who engage in this traffic, money is the mutilator.
4. The Bible does not specifically condemn gambling, betting, or the lottery. The Bible does warn us, however, to stay away from the love of money. (“Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5)
5. Scripture also encourages us to stay away from attempts to “get rich quick.” (He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves wealth with his income; this also is vanity. Ecclesiastes 5:10). Gambling most definitely is focused on the love of money and undeniably tempts people with the promise of quick and easy riches.
6. Gambling is a difficult issue because if it is done in moderation and only on occasion, it is a waste of money, but it is not necessarily evil. People waste money on all sorts of activities. At the same time, the fact that money is wasted on other things does not justify gambling. Money should not be wasted. Excess money should be saved for future needs or given to the Lord’s work, not gambled away.
7. While the Bible does not explicitly mention gambling, it does mention events of “luck” or “chance.” As an example, casting lots is used in Leviticus to choose between the sacrificial goat and the scapegoat. Joshua cast lots to determine the allotment of land to the various tribes. Nehemiah cast lots to determine who would live inside the walls of Jerusalem. The apostles cast lots to determine the replacement for Judas. Proverbs 16:33 says, “The lot is cast in the lap, but its every decision is from the Lord.”
8. Can lotto/lottery proceeds please God? Many people claim to be playing the lottery or gambling so that they can give the money to the church or to some other good cause. While this may be a good motive, reality is that few use gambling winnings for godly purposes.
9. Proverbs 14:11 says, “Dishonest money dwindles away, but he who gathers money little by little makes it grow.” God is sovereign and will provide for the needs of the church through honest means. Would God be honored by receiving donated drug money or money stolen in a bank robbery? Of course not. Neither does God need or want money that was “stolen” from the poor in the temptation for riches.
10: 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.”