Conversations around gambling and Christianity have been on the rise the last couple of years because of the mass legalization of sports betting around the United States. Is it acceptable for Christians to gamble? Is it blatantly sinful for a Christian to bet money on anything? Is this a black and white area, or a matter of Christian discernment, wisdom, and freedom? The Bible does not get into the particulars of gambling, but it has a lot to say about casting lots, wise money management, and related topics. Below are a collection of those Bible verses.
So the men went and passed up and down in the land and wrote in a book a description of it by towns in seven divisions. Then they came to Joshua to the camp at Shiloh, and Joshua cast lots for them in Shiloh before the LORD. And there Joshua apportioned the land to the people of Israel, to each his portion.
You would even cast lots over the fatherless,
and bargain over your friend.
I can count all my bones—
they stare and gloat over me;
they divide my garments among them,
and for my clothing they cast lots.
Wealth gained hastily will dwindle,
but whoever gathers little by little will increase it.
Whoever is greedy for unjust gain troubles his own household,
but he who hates bribes will live.
The lot is cast into the lap,
but its every decision is from the LORD.
An inheritance gained hastily in the beginning
will not be blessed in the end.
The plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance,
but everyone who is hasty comes only to poverty.
Whoever oppresses the poor to increase his own wealth,
or gives to the rich, will only come to poverty.
A faithful man will abound with blessings,
but whoever hastens to be rich will not go unpunished.
A stingy man hastens after wealth
and does not know that poverty will come upon him.
He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves wealth with his income; this also is vanity.
They cast their silver into the streets, and their gold is like an unclean thing. Their silver and gold are not able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the LORD. They cannot satisfy their hunger or fill their stomachs with it. For it was the stumbling block of their iniquity.
And they said to one another, ‘Come, let us cast lots, that we may know on whose account this evil has come upon us.’ So they cast lots, and the lot fell on Jonah.
Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
No one can serve two masters, for 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 God and money.
And when they had crucified him, they divided his garments among them by casting lots.
And he said, ‘What comes out of a person is what defiles him. For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.’
For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul?
And they crucified him and divided his garments among them, casting lots for them, to decide what each should take.
And he said to them, ‘Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.’
Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
No servant can serve two masters, for 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 God and money.
And Jesus said, ‘Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.’ And they cast lots to divide his garments.
In the temple he found those who were selling oxen and sheep and pigeons, and the money-changers sitting there. And making a whip of cords, he drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and oxen. And he poured out the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables.
When the soldiers had crucified Jesus, they took his garments and divided them into four parts, one part for each soldier; also his tunic. But the tunic was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom, so they said to one another, ‘Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it to see whose it shall be.’ This was to fulfill the Scripture which says,
‘They divided my garments among them,
and for my clothing they cast lots.’
So the soldiers did these things,
And they put forward two, Joseph called Barsabbas, who was also called Justus, and Matthias. And they prayed and said, ‘You, Lord, who know the hearts of all, show which one of these two you have chosen to take the place in this ministry and apostleship from which Judas turned aside to go to his own place.’ And they cast lots for them, and the lot fell on Matthias, and he was numbered with the eleven apostles.
1 Corinthians 6:9–10
Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
2 Thessalonians 3:10
For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat.
1 Timothy 6:9–10
But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.
1 Timothy 6:17–19
As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, thus storing up treasure for themselves as a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is truly life.
by Ron Blue with Michael Blue
A step-by-step guide to financial freedom Do you know if you have enough? Do you know how much is enough? If you can’t answer these...
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