Is Gambling a Sin?

Gambling and casting lots mean the same thing:  Letting fate decide the outcome of a situation.  There are many scriptures in the bible about casting lots, and a famous one where casting lots determined who would get Jesus' clothes when he was crucified.  There is no scripture that states emphatically that gambling is a sin.  However....

Many people reading this will be surprised to learn that at one time in my life I gambled frequently and "almost" got hooked as a gambling addict.  My first husband and I were part of a group of friends that loved to gamble.  Once we got to a casino, two of the men would immediately go to the cashier and apply for a $20,000 LOC.

How did I get hooked?  Like a lot of things I do, I purchased a book on how to play Blackjack.  At the time, I didn't see anything wrong with it.  If I was going  to gamble, I needed to know how to play.  With some knowledge and a lot of luck, I went several years in which I always won, a small amount or sometimes thousands.

We traveled to Nassau and Freeport Bahamas to play in their casinos, but I took many cruises and enjoyed the casinos.  I was constantly enticed to gamble because I always won.  Why?  I had enough will-power to get up when I was winning.

So, what happened?  After several years, I started to lose no matter how well I played the game.  This began to dampen my spirit about gambling.  I have been known to sit up all night at a Blackjack table.  This happened the very last time I gambled.  

The last time I gambled, we were at the Taj Mahal Casino in Atlantic City.  During an all-night siege, I had started with $100, and I amassed many thousands of dollars, but did I quit while I was winning?  No!  Will-power was out the window.  By 7::00 AM, I was down to a $2.50 poker chip.  In other words, I had only lost $97.50.  But...this got my attention, and I quit playing Blackjack forever.  I kept this $2.50 poker chip to remind me of what could have happened to me if I had not quit gambling.

When a gambler loses, they are certain that they will recover their loses.  When they win, like me, it inspires them to continue gambling.   However, most gamblers who truly get "hooked" lose money that should be either spent on their families and loved ones, or given to a church or a charitable organization.    

Many lives have been ruined due to a gambling habit.  I had an uncle with four children who would cash his weekly paycheck and head for the casinos.  If he won, he would stay until he lost everything and go home broke.  This caused his family to literally live in poverty.  This is the sin of gambling.

God dealt with me, and I had the good sense to quit gambling before it destroyed my life.  Thank goodness!