“Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” Matthew 6:19-21.
We cannot divide our allegiance. If our heart is double and of this world, so too will we lay up our treasures in this world. The Lottery, which is now up to $1.4 billion dollars has tempted many to drive miles and stand in line for hours for a chance to win this massive amount of money. Let me start off by saying this post is to Believers, not the unbeliever. For the unbeliever, I have another story to tell you…it is the story of Jesus Christ and Him crucified. The story I have for you is “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16. I would much rather be talking to you, the unbeliever, about Jesus but instead, today I’m going to talk to the Believer about the Lottery.
“Thou shalt not covet…” (Exodus 20:17) is the Tenth Commandment. Gambling is one of the worst forms of covetousness. The definition of covet is to “desire, yearn or have one’s heart set on”, in this case, gambling or more specifically, the Lottery. The basis of gambling is luck which has it’s roots in witchcraft, signs, omens and magic. The Word of God says “…The just shall live by faith.” Romans 1:17 – not luck. Luck and karma are led by demon spirits, not the Spirit of God.
Furthermore, anything that can lead one to addiction is of the devil. Addiction is a form of bondage that goes against the Gospel of Jesus Christ which sets the captive free. There are many who never become addicted to gambling but just to be sure, those who do not become addicted to gambling serve as bait to those who do. The alcoholic starts with their first drink and the gambler starts with their first bet.
Gambling is based on the losses of the losers and the losers are more often then not, the very ones who can least afford to gamble; those on welfare, old age pensions or work a minimum wage job. The poorest of the poor, the very ones America is suppose to protect, are the ones who are baited into the Lottery and often become addicted. For a Christian to say the poor have no business playing the lottery if they cannot handle or afford to participate is cruel. Christians are the very ones who should recognize and discern the bondage and certainly should not support that which could make their Brother stumble, we are our Brothers Keeper.
Are Christians refusing to protect the weak and helpless by supporting gambling? You see, I use to be one of those poor who was weak and helpless. You probably would have never known I had been awake all night playing poker. No one knew when I left my home at midnight to drive the hour drive to the casino to try and win money to pay that power bill the next day. I was what you call a “functioning” addict. I was both bait for others and addicted at the same time.
I am thankful to God for delivering me from that pit of darkness. It is quite revealing to me writing this and looking back now seeing the difference in the light and the darkness. At the time I couldn’t see the darkness because there was no light. No, I couldn’t afford to gamble but I couldn’t see the destruction until the Lord came and delivered this captive and all of the glory goes to Him and Him alone.
While the hype is in overdrive regarding the Lottery, if you are a Child of God, ask the Lord for guidance before partaking. Every addict begins with a first. Will you be the bait or addict…or will you be the one who comes out from among them and separates? Don’t answer…that is between you and God, but do ask yourself those questions and be ready to give an answer to the Lord when the time comes.
“Because that, when they knew God, they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, 23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. 24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: 25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.” Romans 1:21-25.
-Donna Clark Warren
- Jimmy Swaggart Bible Commentary Romans 13:3.