Not Worth the Gamble
by MBC STAFF
The recent 1.5 billion dollar Powerball jackpot, won in January, saw people lining up around corners and down multiple blocks in great eagerness to spend their hard-earned money. All of this was to purchase a chance at what turned out to be a prize split three ways, equaling around 500 million dollars each.
The enticement created by such a “prize” awakens a most terrible beast within the heart of man, sadly even within the church. This is called greed. The desire for freedom from work, debt and the promise of a life of “ease” and “comfort” seems well worth the price of a lottery ticket and a chance at the big prize.
Unfortunately, we know that it doesn’t take a 500 million dollar prize for Christians to misuse God’s money. Paul’s warning to Timothy in 1 Timothy 6:9-10 is instructive,
“But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”
Misusing God’s money for carnal things, enhancing our pleasure, investing in things with no eternal value reveals that we have wrong desires and wrong loves. This is difficult to see because we live in a world where Christians scream for “prosperity” and “blessing” as signs of God’s favor upon us and His love for us. This must be discerned as error and resisted as temptation to sin.
Paul tells us that the desire for riches leads to traps and snares and into foolish and harmful lusts which ultimately submerge men and women in destruction and hellfire. Make no mistake friends, “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.” (Mt 6:24 NASB)
Brings Financial Ruin
Puts Faith in “Chance” or “Luck”
Elevates getting over giving
Seeks to gain from another’s loss
Encourages “getting rich quick”
Verses to consider: (Prov 28:22; Mt 6:19-21; Jn 10:10; Acts 20:35b;1 Cor 4:2;
Phil 2:3-4, 4:19)
To gamble (misuse money) via the lottery, casino, fantasy sports leagues, or by not tithing or giving to God, shows that we are not content in Christ. Paul again says in 1 Tim 6:6, “Now godliness with contentment is great gain.” Godliness with contentment is the key to gaining immeasurable treasure and riches in heaven. That is why Jesus commands us not to seek to enhance ourselves in this life, but in the next. He says, “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.” (Mt 6:19-21)
Godliness without contentment leads to a lukewarm life. This “form” of godliness produces a life that can never be fully committed to Christ and thus can never fully enjoy Him. For the Christian, this is a sad way to live.
Let us use our money, like we seek to use our time and our talents, to glorify God and to proclaim that we do not desire riches or love money. Rather, we love and desire Christ and we trust Him to supply all of our needs according to His riches in glory!
For His Glory,
June 21, 2016
April 06, 2016
April 06, 2016