“Morning by morning, O Lord, you hear my voice”

Psalm 5:3

A Plague and a Blight

(Please read Luke 12:13-21)

February 1

During the Great Depression an anecdote made the rounds about a man who took a $20 bill into a store and got it changed into smaller bills, then went to the next store and exchanged the small bills for another twenty, then on to the next store to get change for a twenty, and so on. When one of his friends asked why he was doing that, the man supposedly replied, “Well, sooner or later somebody’s gonna make a mistake with that change, and it ain’t gonna be me!”

We suspect that, in today’s setting, the man would have bought lottery tickets with that $20, hoping all other lottery players would lose their money to him. Either of the two schemes, changing money or betting, would have produced exactly the same thing — zero, zilch, nothing.

When you see a big lottery winner on TV, remember that his winnings came mostly out of the pockets of poor people and compulsive gamblers, two categories unfairly affected by the lotteries. For every winner, there are many losers — the odds against winning one lottery were 136 million to one! And the so-called benefits of directing some gambling receipts to noble causes could be achieved by taxation more easily, more fairly, and at less cost.

Does the Bible condemn gambling? Well, covetousness, selfishness and greed, the driving forces behind gambling, have always been wrong, going back to the Tenth Commandment. Christians should be wary of it, abhor it and shun it.Let’s work and pray for the day when citizens of this country will banish this plague and blight from among us.

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