Monday, June 16, 2014

You BET and Lose!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Beware!  Don’t be greedy for what you don’t have.  Real life is not measured by how much we own.   Luke 12:15

Today is part three of reasons why I will not participate in the lottery, or any other form of gambling....
The whole spirit enveloping the gambling mentality is expressed in the Biblical word "covetousness".  The word "covet" comes from two words that mean a hot or passionate desire.  It is a fixation on something that the heart, mind and soul craves. 
Morals do not enter into this.  It is simply the animal craving to have at all costs.  I recall watching the original "King Kong" movie.  When that big gorilla was just about to pick up the lovely Fay Wray, the hero stepped up and waved his arms, taking the overgrown monkey's attention.  And when Kong turned to look at the hero he was not happy.  There was a fire in his eyes.  He coveted having the hero in the palm of his mitt. 
Covetousness is condemned in the scripture.  Of that there can be no doubt.  Our problem is matching the Bible's ideals with what conflicts in our everyday lives. 
In this case I want to submit to you that gambling is destructive to your spirit, and to the call of the Spirit of God in you.  I base that on the fact that the underlying truth about participating in gambling lies in the carnal nature which covets. 
For the Christian who is serious about following Jesus, the coveting nature should not be catered-to, it should be combated.  If not, it is sin. 
Remember, it is sin to know what you ought to do and then not do it.  James 4:17 (NLT)
The only forms of gain that are approved by Scripture do not include gambling.  "Something for nothing" is an anti-Christian attitude. 
If you are a thief, stop stealing.  Begin using your hands for honest work, and then give generously to others in need.  Ephesians 4:28 (NLT)
Like a bird that hatches eggs she has not laid, so are those who get their wealth by unjust means. Sooner or later they will lose their riches and, at the end of their lives, will become poor old fools. Jeremiah 17:11 (NLT)
We are to work for a living, and that should be honest work. 
A question that keeps coming to mind is:  How can we teach our children that they must work honestly to provide a living, and be responsible stewards, if we demonstrate a personal attitude that says, "C'mon dice, let the good times roll"?
For the love of money is at the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.  1 Timothy 6:10 (NLT)
We can also see that our ability to worship is stunted when we are bound up in covetousness.
So they come pretending to be sincere and sit before you listening.  But they have no intention of doing what I tell them.  They express love with their mouths, but their hearts seek only after money.    Ezekiel 33:31 (NLT)
The common "Christian excuse"?  "It's only a dollar."   Well, it's amazing how small a dollar can look when you're in the grocery store, or buying a car, or adding to your IRA.  But, my how humongous, how gigantic when we are in the vicinity of the offering plate! 
Let me tell you as kindly as I am able....If the few dollars you dispose of are so small, and you wouldn't miss it, I have just the place for you to put it to work where it will mean a lot.   If you "give" only $5 a week to Mr. Lotto, try to get this thought out of your head tonight before you go to sleep.....$5 a week for the last year?  ………
You could've built a whole church building for a Latin American congregation.
The little dollar may not be missed from your pocket, but think what God could do with it.  You may remember He does things like feed 5000 people with only a boy's sack lunch!     
I cannot change everything. 
   I cannot feed all the starving people in the world or clothe all the naked or visit all the lonely...I cannot repeal all the bad legislation on the books. 
But I can be responsible for what I do daily as I follow Jesus. 
For You, Today
Two things:
1.      Lay your promise on God’s altar that you will never participate in the dragging down of yourself or your brother by participating in gambling.
2.      Contact your elected officials – exercise good stewardship over this privilege we have to be citizens who support righteous actions in our government.  Don’t sit back, or the immoral gambling bosses will have their way in our fair state.  Our children don’t need that!
A lottery was held a long time ago.  The military men gambled and cursed.  The prize was a seamless white robe.
That lottery was held at the foot of the cross. 
I was there – vicariously, because of my sinfulness, participating... 

But I don't have to do it again!

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