What Does the Bible Say About Gambling?
If you are religious and like to gamble, you are probably interested whether your love for God and money can coexist. Even though some countries have legalised gambling in certain areas, you are still wondering what the Bible has to say about it. Can one love wealth and be true to their faith at the same time? Does love of money corrupt people? Can you win money and be content, instead of feeling guilty? Do religious gamblers serve two masters? The bottom line is that you want to know whether gambling is a sin.
The fact that you began reading this text implies that all of these questions have popped into your head at least once. Let’s face it — almost everyone would like to become rich quick. However, there is an ethical dilemma that can bother you and prevent you from living free of worries. Luckily for you, I have thought about this matter as well. That is why I have decided to address all of you who wonder if they can do both — go to church and enter a casino. We will go through some Bible verses from different points of view and try to get to the bottom of this.
This verse states that one should not love the money. According to it, God will guide you, you just need to be happy with what you already have. This is a valid statement, and most people feel the same way. However, nobody really loves money. Money is an entity, and so is church. You love God, not church. A church is what you need to feel closer to him. The same goes for money. Money is just a channel that facilitates your life. You need it to live a decent life, but that does not mean you love it.
According to this passage, money is the root of evil. That is true if you steal, cheat, or kill in order to make a profit. That is also true in case you damage someone intentionally for the money. However, money is a necessity. The modern world requires you to have it so that you can support yourself and your loved ones. Think about all the times a child has lived and recovered from an illness because good people donated money. Remember the joy of poor children who receive a gift. Having money does not have to mean you have abandoned your faith and pierced your heart with grief, to reward the verse. Using it for the wrong purpose does.
As this verse says, you cannot serve two masters — God and money. That is true, but it refers to people who live to earn or win money, not the other way around. If you view money the right way, you think of it as merely a tool. That way, it serves you. There is nothing wrong with having money and using it. There is nothing wrong with winning money. At the end of the day, regardless of how much you have, if you do not let it control you, you cannot be considered a servant.
This passage clearly states that only money obtained in a fraudulent way is to be lost. If you collect money in an honest way, by earning it or buying a winning lottery ticket, you have nothing to worry about. The same goes for other forms of gambling. You make a deposit and win fair and square. The money you have won is not necessarily tainted. This part of the Bible also claims that acquiring money gradually is what makes your possessions grow. That is precisely the concept of gambling — you lay a wager, sometimes you land a prize, other times you lose.
The 10th Commandment
This part of the Bible refers to coveting as a source of all the problems humanity may experience. Let us clarify the definition of the specific term. Coveting usually has an undertone of wanting something that belongs to someone else. According to Christianity, that is wrong, but gambling does not imply taking someone else’s possession. It is an activity most people view as a pastime that can bring them profit.
As for the segment about God giving each person a talent which should not be taken lightly — if you are talented to use your thinking skills in a game, you have no reason to be ashamed of it. You ought to consider the money you may gather that way as merely a logical outcome, a reward for using your talent.
We all know that greed is a sin. However, if you gamble for the sake of fun it provides and you happen to win, that does not mean that you are greedy. There is nothing in the Bible that prohibits having fun and practising your skills in a game. As long as you have a strong work ethic, you can earn money by putting your talent to good use. The same goes for gambling — if you play fair and receive a reward in the form of money, there is nothing wrong about it. Money is a root of all kinds of evil only if you obtain it using the corrupt means or if you let it consume you. Therefore, you can both believe and gamble, as long as you gamble for fun.