Monday, November 20, 2006

"Is Gambling a Problem for You?"

A question of church ethics: should churches run raffles/guessing competitions (a guessing competition is more or less a raffle minus the government license)? After all, the church will rightly condemn the power that gambling (lotteries, pokies, et al) holds on people, but turn into a church run guessing competition, and make the main prize a Bridge Climb rather than a QANTAS holiday, does that make it all hokey dokey?

Of course, I could be over reacting. But if it is true to say that the churches life is its mission and the churches mission is its life, than our call to be distinct from he rest of society must be taken seriously in all areas of the church - even the church fete.

"...let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven."

Is Gambling a problem for you? Call G-line (NSW counseling
service) 1800 633 635.


byron said...

Is gambling itself wrong, or is it like alcohol and cigarettes, a highly addictive (esp for some) recreation that might be acceptible in moderation? Of course, this is assuming that the level of addiction and social/medical costs of smoking and alcohol are defensible...

Moffitt the Prophet said...
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Moffitt the Prophet said...

Your more than likely right Byron :)

But in a society gripped by use/addiction of/to cigarettes and gambling, should the church be engaged in it? Particuarly with gambling, with so many peoples hopes tied to being succsful with gambling: "If only I won the Lotto".

Christian A said...

Another potential problem with the fundraising method you're talking about is that it strips Christians of the blessing of giving by throwing in an alternative motive.

When you offer a bridge climb as a potential benefit for donating, then perhaps it brings a whle new meaning (and not necessarily the correct one!) to this verse:

"Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the profit that accumulates to your account" (Philippians 4:17)

And though I haven't really read over it recently, isn't Paul pretty concerned in 2 Corinthians 7-9 about the motives for giving not just the amount? (e.g. 2 Cor 9:5)

Anonymous said...

Man, I've worked with lotto for nearly seven years and I hate it so much, I agree with Matthew, why push a dead dog I mean surely a church raffle isnt the last bastion of fund raising if it causes a brother or sister to stumble, why should christians imitate the pagans to raise funds or save souls. Seems a bit lazy, unimaginative and careless to me. I tend to worry about the source of winnings. A christian wins lotto whos empty pocket are they plundering? The single mum hoping for a break? The grandmother with nothing to leave her grandchildren? I don't think gambling is a sin in itself, but why sweat over a dead hope when so much is promised in Jesus.