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A worldview is a set of claims that purport to be based on ultimate reality.

Archive for November, 2006

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Posted by ssbg on November 30, 2006

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Gambling and the Bible

Posted by ssbg on November 30, 2006

By RONALD A. RENO
Focus on the Family

Love of neighbor-Jesus commanded, “Love your neighbor as yourself” (Mark 12:31). Gambling, meanwhile, is predicated on the losses, pain, and suffering of others. For one to win at gambling, others must lose. For many, the ramifications attributable to their gambling losses are profound. Families touched by a gambling addiction are at greatly increased risk for such negative outcomes as divorce, bankruptcy, child abuse, domestic violence, crime, and suicide. More than 15 million Americans already struggle with a gambling problem, and the number continues to grow as gambling expands.

Exploiting the poor-Gambling preys on the desperation of the poor. The National Gambling Impact Study Commission found that those with incomes less than $10,000 spend more on lottery tickets than any other income group. High school dropouts spend four times as much as college graduates. Scripture exhorts us to look out for the poor and disadvantaged, and issues strong warnings against taking advantage of their plight.
See, for instance, Proverbs 14:21, 14:31, 22:16; Isaiah 3:14-15; Amos 5:11-12; Zechariah 7:10a.

Work ethic-Work has been part of God’s design for mankind from the very beginning. We are to invest our time and energies into labors that supply our needs and those of our families (Proverbs 31, 2 Thessalonians 3:10, 1 Timothy 5:8) and that allow us to share with others (Ephesians 4:28). Scripture is replete with exhortations toward industriousness and admonitions against slothfulness.

Greed-Gambling is founded on greed and undergirded by a “get-rich-quick” appeal. In a recent national poll, two-thirds of respondents stated that the reason they gamble is to win money. The Apostle Paul wrote in 1 Timothy 6:9-10a: “People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil.”

Covetousness-The 10th Commandment (Exodus 20:17) prohibits Christians from coveting another’s possessions. Gambling is precisely the attempt to obtain the resources of others without providing anything of value in return. Some have rightly described gambling as consensual theft.

Stewardship-Christians are responsible before God for how they invest the resources entrusted to them, as the parable of the talents (Matthew 25:14-30) makes clear. In many cases, money spent on gambling is money that should have gone to provide for the well-being of one’s family or the advancement of a worthy cause. In all cases, it is an unwise investment with an almost-certain negative return.

The role of government-The God-ordained purpose of government, as outlined in Romans 13:1-5, is to protect the welfare of the citizenry and to suppress evil. State-sanctioned gambling does the opposite. It victimizes many, especially the most vulnerable. It also condones-and even promotes-a vice that has historically been repressed specifically because of its inherent debilitating and corruptive nature.

Deception-Legal gambling operations are steeped in deceit. Lotteries that conceal or misstate the odds, casinos without clocks or windows to hide the passage of time, slot machines programmed for “near misses,” and “riverboat” casinos that cannot sail are but a few examples. Scripture, on the other hand, detests deceitful conduct (Psalm 5:6: “You destroy those who tell lies; bloodthirsty and deceitful men the Lord abhors.”). Indeed, Jesus describes Himself as the embodiment of truth (John 14:6) and Satan as “the father of lies” (John 8:44).

Avoiding temptation-Gambling establishments are often host to other corrupting vices, including prostitution and drunkenness. Christians are urged to avoid such environments (1 Thessalonians 5:22: “Avoid every kind of evil.”). In 1 Corinthians 15:33, Paul writes, “Do not be misled: ‘Bad company corrupts good character.'” Other Scriptures warn believers to flee temptation (1 Corinthians 6:18, 2 Timothy 2:22).

Lack of trust in God-The Bible teaches that Christians are to look to God as their provider, and that we are to be content with the material blessings we receive from His hand. To engage in gambling indicates both a lack of trust in and dissatisfaction with God’s provision. See, for instance, Matthew 6:25-34; Philippians 4:11-12, 4:19; 1 Timothy 6:6; Hebrews 13:5.


Gambling and the Bible by Ron Reno, as seen on www.family.org. Copyright (c) 1999 by Focus on the Family. All rights reserved. International copyright secured. Used by permission.

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The Bible on Gambling

Posted by ssbg on November 30, 2006

I.  Get-rich-quick schemes are a hoax. 

     A.  They bring poverty, not wealth.

                  Prov 28:22 (cp. Prov 22:16)
                  “He that hastens to be rich hath
                  an evil eye, and considers not 
                  that poverty shall come upon him.”

      B.  The divinely established means of “getting ahead” is by work.

                    Gen 2:15; 3:19
                    Exo 20:9
                    2 Thes 3:10, 11
                    Eph 4:28
                    Prov 6:6; 12:11; 20:4

II. The greed (covetousness) that motivates individuals to gamble is sin.

              Ex 20:17
              Prov 11:28; 15:16; 23:4-5
              Gal 5:21
              Eph 5:3-5
              Phil 4:11-13
              Col 3:5
              1 Tim 6:6-11, 17-19

III.  Gambling is destructive.

    A. Spiritually. It affects our walk with God.

          1.  It indicates a lack of trust in God’s ability to provide.

                 Mat 6:25-34
                 Luke 12:15
                 Heb 13:5
                 1 Tim 6:6-9

           2.  True riches are spiritual and eternal.

                 Phil 4:19 “riches in glory in Christ” 
                 Jas 2:5 “rich in faith”
                 1 Tim 6:18 “rich in good deeds”
                 Eph 2:4 “rich in mercy”

           3.  We should look to God as our Source of supply: 

                  Phil 4:19
                  Eph 3:20

           4.  Gambling expressly denies God’s sovereignty and care.

                  Mat 10:30
                  Prov 3:5-6)

           5.  A form of covetousness, gambling violates the tenth commandment.

                  Exo 20:17

           6.  Christians are called to a walk of holiness (separation from the world).

                  Eph 5:3 
                  1 Thes 5:22 

           7.  Gambling destroys contentment.

                  I Tim. 6:6, 10
                  Col. 3:2
                  Jn 6:27
                  Matt. 16:26

     B.  Societally. Gambling destroys families and communities. 

           1.  Gambling robs money from the family, for which parents have a responsibility to provide.

                   2 Cor 12:14
                   2 Thes 3:12
                   1 Tim 5:9
                   Prov 15:27

           2.  Gambling distorts our love for our neighbor, exploiting the most vulnerable members of society: the poor.

                   Phil 2:3-4
                   Zech 7:9-10

           3.  Gambling is a bad example to others. 

                   1 Corin 10:31-33

            4.  Gambling encourages stealing, which increases court costs; stresses out marital relationships by burdening finances (“He who is greedy for gain troubles his own house…” Prov 15:27); and forces reliance upon public assistance, bankruptcy, etc.

     C.  Personally. Gambling is self-destructive. 

           1.  Gambling destroys our work ethic.

                    Gen 2:15; 3:19
                    Exo 20:9
                    2 Thes 3:10, 11
                    Eph 4:28
                    Prov 6:6; 12:11; 20:4

           2.  Gambling is rooted in greed, the love and craving for money, which is “the root of all evil.”

                     Mat 6:31
                     1 Tim 6:10

            3.  Gambling is addicting. God wants us to be free!

                     Rom 8:21
                     2 Corin 3:17
                     Gal 5:1, 13
                     1 Pet 2:16
                     2 Pet 2:19

 God does not need our money to fund His mission in the world. Proverbs 13:11 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 back robbery? Neither does God need or want money that was “stolen” from the poor by the temptation for riches.

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ZZZZZZZ

Posted by ssbg on November 27, 2006

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Something cool that Xerox is doing

Posted by ssbg on November 27, 2006

      If you go to this website, www.letssaythanks.com  can pick out a thank you card and Xerox will print it, and it will be sent to a soldier that is currently serving in Iraq     You can’t pick out who gets it, but it will go to some member of the armed services.
How AMAZING it would be if we could get everyone we know to send one!!!  This is a great site.  Please send a card.
It is FREE and it only takes a second. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if the soldiers received a bunch of these?

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