Bible Question:

I read your answer to “Is gambling a sin” and found it very helpful. But I would like further explanation because I play poker with my buddies and we play for fun, each putting in maybe $20 at the most. We enjoy ourselves and I consider it no different than buying a $20 raffle ticket with 5,000 other people. The most I play with is ten people. Wouldn't a 1:5,000 chance be a higher risk than 1:10?

Bible Answer:

The previous question, “Is Gambling a sin?” provided some guidelines that would be good to review before one gambles. An additional question to ask is, “Am I being a good steward of the Lord’s money?” Losing money on a regular basis is not good stewardship. Why not use marbles, almonds, rocks, or just poker chips? Or, if you do want to play with money, return the money back to its original owner at the end of the game. It is just a game, isn’t? Or, is the thrill in actually getting some money? Solomon was correct when he wrote the following,

He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves abundance with its income. This too is vanity. Ecclesiastes 5:10 (NAS95S)

Men prepare a meal for enjoyment, and wine makes life merry, and money is the answer to everything. Ecclesiastes 10:19 (NAS95S)

Conclusion:

Since scripture does not address the issue of gambling, we must be careful not to conclude that playing poker is sin. The real issue is what is best, and not what one can get away with. God honors a man or woman who desires to give Him his or her best. Be careful that money is not the real issue in your life. Can you play poker without risking the loss of money? Would using the money for the family or giving it to the Lord be good stewardship? I would be concerned about what was truly controlling me.

Suggested Links:

Is Gambling a sin?
Peace With God